Monday, April 9, 2012

Tavern Pie Confidential: Westwoods Lodge

Not every good pizza comes from a pizzeria or Italian restaurant.  Occasionally you can find a tasty cheese and tomato sauce topped crust at your local drinking+food haunt.  This type of establishment has an inherent advantage over a place that doesn't serve beer because I believe absolutely that there is not a better compliment for good pizza than an ice cold brew.  On this night we chose one of my favorite spots on the west side, Westwoods Lodge.

Where They're Located:
2406 W. Jefferson
Springfield, IL

Call 'Em:
(217) 698-9256

The Pizza:  Bacon, Green Olive and Tomato

The Crust:  Thin

The Dish:
Westwoods Lodge is a one of a kind place in Springfield.  It reminds me of a Canadian hunting lodge with lots of unfinished wood, a long friendly bar and the hard work of a busy taxidermist all over the place.  Stuffed deer, a coyote, turkey, cougar and of course over the fireplace is a moose head.
It's a great place to get a cold drink just about anytime but the food is also well worth making the trip out to West Jefferson.  The menu is diverse and has everything from steaks and wings to horseshoes and of course pizza.  They really pack them in at Westwoods and almost everytime I eat there I run into someone I know.
On this visit I was accompanied by my in-laws, a niece and my trusty assistant.  I was the only one who opted for pizza  and I enjoyed a cold PBR and conversation with the wife's folks while we waited for our order.

How'd It Eat?
I felt like it took fairly long for the food to arrive but I think more than anything I was just really hungry and impatient.  The pizza was well prepared and cut into slices instead of squares.  The crust was brown on the edges and crispy and firm.  I noticed some saltiness in it but it wasn't overwhelming.  I enjoyed the mixture of  the bacon and fresh chopped tomato and the green olives added an interesting element to the flavor profile of this pie.  I wasn't overly impressed with the cheese and sauce but taste-wise they didn't do anything to make the pizza any worse.  I would have preferred just a bit less cheese but in the end I'd rather have a little too much than not enough.  There was plenty of cold PBR to wash this pie down and honestly Westwoods really hits the spot.
All in all, you're getting a solid pizza in a friendly, unique atmosphere and for me that's more than enough to keep me coming back.  Anytime you're down for cold beer and a hot pizza with plenty of other option on the menu taking your hunting party out to Westwoods and sample some quality tavern style pie.

SPP Ranking:  7.3

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