Papa Dave’s Pizza
820 20th St
New Westminster, BC
[To begin this particular post, let me first note that I was fumbling around with one of my cameras and my cell phone, and ate some of my meal in the restaurant itself as well I took the leftovers home. Hence, the “variation” in the images below.]
In a tiny commercial building that houses a Vietnamese restaurant (to be written up in a future post), a sandwich shop and a Filipino grocery, a fourth business claims residence as a pizzeria. With a less than unique namesake (I guess “John” was already taken), Papa Dave’s churns out pizzas, lasagnas and other easy fast food meals in this part of town bordering the edge of southeast Burnaby and the western side of New West. Well, make that rather a very enthusiastic and friendly three-generation, East Indian family that is in charge of the actual cooking.
Hoping to just grab a slice or two for a quick meal, I discovered that there were no hot, ready-made pizzas/slices sitting in some warming display case, as is found in many a pizza joint in town. Alas, I asked how long it would take for them to make me a full pie instead, and since there was no wait I smacked down some cash for what turned out to be an eight-piecer. The 12″ pizza was from the “top of the line’ section of their menu, and was a shrimp pizza loaded with mushrooms, onions, green peppers, tomatoes, pineapple and what was dubbed “Papa Dave’s three cheese blend”. Yes, a unique mixture. And when it comes to weird eats, I’m often game.
Getting back to the proprietor, led by an outgoing woman who boasted about how great their food is, and seemingly was interested in knowing more about me, suggesting I come in for home cooked meals since it looked like I lived alone. 🙂 A very motherly-attitude, which I played along with trying to find out why she thought their pizza and pastas were so wonderful. I guess I should have just looked at the takeaway boxes lying around, as I swear I heard her list off many of the adjectives on it when she spoke to me.
The funny thing was that it didn’t end there. Her young daughter who couldn’t have been more than 12 years old, who seemed to be on a school break and who delivered the pizza to my table, went off on a similar promo pitch. Well trained, I thought. No worries about succession planning here.
And finally, the pizza. As I dug in, the woman appeared again from the back asking me how it was. I can’t imagine why I was getting all this attention, as I hadn’t pulled out my camera at all in their view or made an overtures towards me being a pizza aficionado. So it leads me to believe they do this for everyone who walks into their used car lot, err I mean pizza shop. Confidently proclaiming that they have mastered the art of not overcooking shrimp on pizza, in actuality I thought it was a touch underdone. Either that, or the mini-shrimp were really moist to begin with.
The assortment of toppings overwhelmed the top of the crust. My preference for pizza falls at both ends of the spectrum, depending on the mood I am in. Either heavily overloaded like this one or really basic (e.g. Margarita). I found the contrast between the salty cheese and shrimp and pineapple an interesting proposition.
The crust while in and of itself was nothing extraordinarily different from most other pizzas out there, it was fortunately not dried out and brittle like cardboard. Which made eating it all possible, without having to discard the edge or scrape of the toppings just to salvage the meal. I had a two pieces and took the rest to go.
But not before the grandmother then came out to see me and give me one final sales call. I guess they really want me to come back…