Thursday, March 26, 2009

Reviewing C'ville's Finest - A Culinary Adventure: Part II - The Gang Goes to CiCi's


For the second article in what promises to be a very long and profitable series, I decided to review Cici’s Pizza, this time accompanied by just T-Pain and Justincredible. (Find the first installment here). Cici’s Pizza is an all-you-can eat pizza buffet located up 29 in the Seminole Square Shopping Center. It also has all-you-can eat salad and pasta, but the main attraction is definitely the pizza. You can tell this by reading its name. Let’s get going.

Ambiance
Surprisingly dull. Team member-customer interaction exclusively happens while paying at the counter for your meal and drink. You’re responsible for the rest of your needs – you get your own pizza, you refill your own drink, and in the bathroom, you wash your own hands. Chris the Manager would yell out the name of the pizza coming off the conveyor belt oven. I assume that’s what he was saying, because, while audible, the words meant very little to my ear. He probably intended to mimic the voice tone of an auctioneer, but it sounded more like random noise – perhaps something like the sound coming from an old AM/FM radio when you’re fiddling with the tuner. The other customers were mostly parents with young children, including one adorable little girl sitting behind us, or obese people looking forward to cashing in on Obama’s universal health care. Approximately fifteen sk8erbois took turns describing, alternatively, sweet sk8er moves they could do and girls they would hook up if said girls knew they existed.
Grade: B

T-Pain's remarks in italics [and edited for language and grammar]:
First of all, Chris is my man. He yells out [stuff] like "BEEE-HOLD, THE POW-WUURRR OF CHEEEESE!!!" when he places pizzas on the buffet, and he does it without a hint of self consciousness. Second, you will never hear T-Pain complain about an establishment filled with young mothers; [they're] my favorite [people]. Also, Cici's has these [awesome] bug light sconces that serve a dual purpose - they kill bugs [...] and they also look nice, providing a bug free, attractive environment. Finally, those dudes in the back were members of the top hybrid paintball/D&D club in C'ville. The closest they've been to a skateboard since the 5th grade was the time they totally kicked skater [butt] outside of the Seminole 4.
Grade: A+

Service
None. See above.
Grade: NA

Two quick points: the dirty plate cleanup was mad quick. Also, the register worker was very clear and polite in explaining why the buffet cost so [darn] much. Big ups.
Grade: Satisfactory

Décor
Below average. The walls lacked decoration, absent a massive print above the buffet extolling Cici’s fine and delicious ingredients. Two televisions protruded from the wall – one could pick between watching CSNBS and the Cartoon Channel. Eye gouge! The most interesting décor was the arcade in the back of the restaurant. Cici’s offered several choices for the gaming thrill seeker, including “Put in a dollar, win 4 quarters”, “The Fast and the Furious”, “Big Game Hunter”, and one especially evil machine called the "Build Brick Prize Machine." For only $0.75, one purchases the opportunity to win one of three prizes: (1) nothing, (2) a “minor prize” – some plastic shit, including a crappy looking wristband, a top, and a Stretch Armstrong playdoh thing, or (3) a “major prize” – a Zune or an iPod or a digital camera. Blocks move back and forth and the player has to press the button at the right time to stack up the blocks. The pace of the back and forth increases as the height of the stack increases. Stack ten levels and you win a “minor prize.” Stack sixteen levels and you win a “major prize.” After considering the disparity between the minor and major prizes, plus the fact that all the major prizes appeared to have come out a couple years ago, T-Pain opined that it was likely a near-impossibility for someone to win the “major prize” or was actually an impossibility and therefore fraudulent. All present concurred. By the way, I finished 5th in a street-race in Chinatown playing The Fast and the Furious – Justincredible urged me to pick the 1995 Toyota Supra, but I was too intrigued with the top speed of the 1967 Pontiac GTO.
Grade: B-

Cici needs to hire a decorator or some[thing].

Food
Outstanding. Here’s where Cici’s shines. As mentioned above, Cici’s has salad and pasta. We all declined both offerings so we can’t tell you how the fare was. Sorry, but if you want a salad bar, go to a farm or HT or some boring place like that. Now that I’ve cleared that up, I can report that the pizza was delicious. While largely tasting the same regardless of topping, some pizzas stood out for their scrumtrelescence. I loved the “BBQ” and the “chicken with hot sauce” pizzas most especially, although I admit that cubed chicken is a little weird. The onion and sausage pizza also delighted my pallet with its deep, succulent flavors of …. wait for it …. onion and sausage. Stay away from the macaroni and cheese pizza – Justincredible lamented the extreme carbs of this pizza, as he is actually a woman, while T-Pain and I agreed that the value-add of the “pizza” part of the macaroni and cheese pizza was zero. The cheese bread was excellent, if a bit greasy – make sure you get a bowl of the red sauce for dipping. The dessert portion of the buffet is fantastic. The brownies are extra gooey and the apple crisp pizza is unreal delicious. At the end of our feast, I almost couldn’t breath because I had eaten so much, but I made sure to sample the desserts. (Notice the sacrifice I make for you readers).
Grade: A

They got [sic] ranch dressing and bowls to dip food in. Nice. A++

Price
$8.50 including the bigger to-go drink and tax (price same for lunch and dinner) ($17 when T-Pain forgets his wallet - jerk)
Price - Free: big up to my man J-Crew. Thanks dog. I'll get you back, I just need to wait a couple weeks til my [check] clears.

Overall grade: B
Overall grade: A dog. A. Don't hate.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

This blog just jumped the shark. Cicis? REALLY..? Will there be a review of Pizza Hut next?

Mike said...

A Cici's vs. Pizza Hut post would be high quality bloggin'

Rule 12 (f) said...

So if it jumped the shark does that mean it was cool in the first place?

J. Crew Model said...

Perhaps you would prefer reviews of the Downtown Grille or Mas? EITE, Cici's is way more relevant for law students.

Tell you what, 11:49. I'll review the Boar's Head Inn breakfast buffet for the final installment of the school year. Prestigious, no?

Anonymous said...

Cici's is ballin' dude

Anonymous said...

This post is relevant to my interests.

Anonymous said...

agree with #1

Fred said...

8:16 = 11:49