Casey's has a 'pizza' the pie
Casey's General Store has perfected their pizza.
ROCHESTER — It's not like there's a shortage of pizza places in our area — grocery stores, restaurants and national chains are here to feed that craving.
There is however one place you may not suspect that has dedicated following: Casey's General Store.
Here is a convenience store that sells gasoline, but has also been a favorite for pizza for a very long time.
While some might hesitate buying pizza from a gas station, it pays to know that the brand is the fifth-most popular pizza chain in the country, according to Katie Petru, communications director of the company.
You can fill up your car as well as yourself.
Pizza has been part of their food offerings for at least 40 years, giving them plenty of time to perfect it, and they have.
Their secret? The ingredients.
The dough for the crust is made fresh from scratch every morning at every store by their specially trained kitchen staff.
That recipe has never changed, their thinking being why mess with success?
The cheese is a whole-milk mozzarella, the vegetables are hand-cut and the meats come from select vendors.
The sauce is a nice balance between sweet and spicy, good for midwestern palates.
The options you can order are both classic and creative. There are the basics such as pepperoni and sausage, but then there is taco, a Meat Galore, Hawaiian, barbecue chicken, and bacon cheeseburger, to name a few.
There also is a vegetarian and of course you can put your own together.
Unique is the breakfast pizza, a big seller and clear favorite. It starts with either a cheese sauce or sausage gravy base, and then is topped with cheese, scrambled eggs and a choice of meat and vegetables.
One customer told me she stops every morning on her way to work and picks one up.
Occasionally, Casey's offers specialty limited ddition pizzas. Recent ones were macaroni and cheese, pepperoni and meatball, spinach, artichoke and chicken, and a Philly cheese steak Pizza.
The overall best seller comes as no surprise: pepperoni.
Casey's tends to be more of a presence in rural and midsized communities, although there are three in Rochester. The current number of Casey's in a 16-state area is 2,400, making it the third-largest convenience store retailer in the country.
The number of pizzas they sell is also impressive: 40 million whole pizzas and 62 million single slices.
If you question the quality and their boast of "restaurant quality food," Food and Wine Magazine, a leader in the field, ranked Casey's sixth out of 22 in a ranking of convenience stores serving the best food.
This is National Pizza Week, a perfect excuse to give Casey's a try if you haven't already.
Casey's in Rochester
1600 Eastwood Road SE
1907 Seventh St. NW
4500 18th Ave. NW
For more information, go to www.caseys.com
Post Bulletin food writer Holly Ebel knows what’s cookin’. Send comments or story tips to firstname.lastname@example.org .