It seems when it comes to pizza, you often are faced with several choices, such as New York Thin Crust style verses Chicago Deep Dish style. Then it’s often between mom and pop locations and the “chain” places. And even within the “chains” you get a choice between the cheap and mediocre places, like Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Domino’s, and Little Caesar’s which are to pizza what McDonald’s is to hamburgers. And there are even more premium chain places like Round Table Pizza, California Pizza Kitchen, Sammy’s Woodfired Pizzas, and Chicago UNO, that offer better pizza experiences. Joining the foray of the premium style chains, one of Canada’s most popular pizza chains, Boston Pizza, are expanding into the United States branding these locations as “Boston’s Gourmet Pizza” and positioning themselves as a restaurant and sports bar offering two experiences under one roof.
You may be asking, if Boston’s Gourmet Pizza originates from Canada, why do they call themselves “Boston’s” instead of some city in Canada? Well the answer to that lies in its history, as Boston Pizza was started by a Greek Immigrant to Canada in 1964. When he was looking for a name for his pizza place that he was starting in Edmonton, Alberta, he felt with The Boston Bruins, The Boston Red Sox, The Boston Celtics, and even Boston Creme Pie, the name Boston was recognizable and established. In the words of founder, Gus Agioritis, Boston meant “Big Leagues.” The company grew quickly through franchising quickly and today has over 325 locations throughout Canada and over 50 in the US since the company first expanded into the US in 1998.
While Pizza is the primary product on the menu, it’s far from the only type of food found there. The menu is actually quite reflective of a casual dining restaurant offering appetizers, salads, gourmet pastas, sandwiches, healthy selections, hamburgers, and desserts plus a full service bar and outdoor patio in the sports bar section of the restaurant in addition to their gourmet pizza offerings. Boston Pizza in Canada is known for its signature crispy crust and they’ve brought that along into their American Franchise locations.
The location in Encinitas is located of El Camino Real and Via Montoro in what used to be the Red Robin for those familiar with the area. The food is good, and the staff are very friendly bringing a very Canadian touch of hospitality. I’ve been to the restaurant twice now, once with friends in March, and the second time with a former roommate earlier this week. My former roommate and I opted to split a Tropical Chicken Pizza, which has an Alfredo sauce base, pineapple, smoked bacon, spicy chicken, topped with Mozzarella and Cheddar cheese. I thought the pizza was really good and a unique spin on a Hawaiian pizza by changing out the sauce and swapping chicken for the ham. Hawaiian pizza is also on the menu.
The menu has quite a bit of variety on it to satisfy just about any tastes, so even if its not pizza that you crave, they have an appetizer or lunch or dinner item perfect for what you’re in the mood for. In fact the full menu can be viewed by clicking here. Be sure to check out the website for Boston’s Gourmet Pizza by clicking here, and if you’re interested, check out their Canadian website by clicking here.