Photo: Erik R. Trinidad
You might have noticed that most "new" items at fast-food chains are just rearrangements of the ingredients found in their usual fare, and Pizza Hut is no stranger to this concept. Their latest offering is the Big Dipper -- made from their staple ingredients of crust, tomato sauce, cheese, and toppings. It's the presentation that's new: This pie is sliced to share three or four ways on Super Bowl Sunday.
The Claim: The Big Dipper is a rectangular pizza (about 24"x9"), served with one or more toppings. It is cut into 24 pieces, each about 2" x 4.5", and served with four 3-oz cups of marinara sauce, presumably so that four individuals can have his/her own.
My full review after the jump...
The Price: $12 with one topping, $2 additional for more toppings.
The Verdict: Grade B+. At a glance, The Big Dipper appears to be a cross between Pizza Hut's pizza and their breadsticks, and at an existential level it is: It's a pizza, this time with the right angles of a Sicilian, and cut into little "sticks." The twist is, everything is on top of the crust except for the tomato sauce, which is served on the side as a something to dip in.
We sampled it with pepperoni as well as with the toppings of a Supreme Pizza (pepperoni, beef, pork sausage, white mushrooms, red peppers, and green peppers). The toppings are baked into the crust with mozzarella, sans marinara, but there is enough sauce on the side for generous dips for every bite (without double dipping). Overall, Pizza Hut's signature taste is still there, just with the added step of dipping, and it is good, but nothing inventive.
All makes it sound like The Big Dipper is merely a rectangular pizza that requires a little sauce interaction, but the texture of crust is actually what sets it apart from Pizza Hut's other items -- and in a good way.
It's a lot lighter, flakier, and crispier than what I recall in their breadsticks or regular pizza crusts, with less dough density. Perhaps it's because the dough is rolled out two feet long, or the fact that it feels more delicate in your mouth because you're only chewing a two-inch width at a time, but it makes a difference...not that you'll care too much about that when you're shoving it down your mouth and drowning it with beer during the big game on February 6th.
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