This one is the "Freschetta PizzAmore' Hand Tossed Style Crust Pepperoni Duo Pizza".
This is a Schwan pizza brand, and Schwan generally has good crusts, sauce, and pepperoni, but tends to be a bit weak on the cheese. So how does this one turn out?
The pizza slid out of the box in a little black cardboard tray. The directions say to put the tray into the oven with the pizza on it. I usually cook pizzas on a pizza stone nowadays because it provides a much more even temperature, but I was okay with skipping that for the purpose of this exercise. Looking at the pizza, it seemed a bit scant on the pepperoni, but seemed to have plenty of cheese. So I put it in the preheated oven and waited for it to be done.
Upon sliding it out, there was a pool of grease in the middle of the pizza. Apparently I underestimated how much pepperoni was on the pizza, I guess there was some hiding under the cheese. So the first thing I did was sop up some of the grease with paper towels. And the verdict is...
First off, the pepperoni and sauce are typically peppy Schwan. The cheese on this pizza would be rather lackadaisical, except for one thing: Schwan has put some parmesan cheese into the mix. It adds a pep that works well with the pep of the sauce and pepperoni. I think a smoother cheese would have made for a better balanced pizza, but if you like a peppy pizza, you'll like this.
The only real downer is the crust. It's not a *bad* crust, but it doesn't rise up above the pedestrian. The peppy nature of the toppings really call for a bready crust with a hint of sweetness to balance out the peppy toppings. This crust, however, is a fairly neutral crust that keeps the toppings off the bottom of the oven but otherwise doesn't contribute much to the pizza. The only good thing about it is that the texture is better than I expected given the thin cardboard "baking pan" that it was cooked in. Still, it could have been better.
So my final verdict is that this thing is one star short of excellent. I rate it four out of five -- if you see it on sale at your local grocer, get it. But it definitely will not surpass any good home-made pizza with a nicely bready home-made crust - though it's certainly better than the soggy atrocities you get delivered.
-- Badtux the Pizza Penguin