By Talia Dennis and Taylor Markey

This is the last Taste-T review for the spring semester, but we’ll try not to make it too cheesy. Speaking of cheese, we went to &pizza because nothing says celebration like pizza.

We have a lot to celebrate. We are nearly done with our first year of college, Taylor is turning 19 in less than a week, and the weather is getting nicer.

&pizza has several locations in the Washington, D.C. area, and has expanded to Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania. We went to the Columbia Heights location because it’s only a couple blocks from the Metro station.

The inside of the restaurant is very spacious and has an edgy feel. There are “graffiti” accents throughout the restaurant, such as on the napkin holders and bathroom walls.

It was hard to hear the person making our pizza due to how loud the music was, but it was a quick and somewhat easy ordering process. Most people took their pizza to-go, but we chose to eat it there.

Our pizzas were not cold, but we felt they could have been warmer.

The prices are not listed for “The Hits,” which are their already-designed pizzas. When it is time to pay, the total comes as a surprise due to this lack of clarity. The website notes that prices and availability may change depending on the location.

The Moonstruck pizza is $10.25. (Taylor Markey/Bloc Reporter)

Taylor: I ordered the Moonstruck pizza ($10.25), which is supposed to have “mushroom truffle, garlic ricotta, mozzarella, mushroom, grilled onion, goat cheese, [and] fig balsamic.” However, they ran out of the garlic ricotta and could only use the mushroom truffle sauce.

The pizza tasted sweet because of the balsamic, and everything blended together perfectly. It was also very filling; I was full after eating half of the pizza (four slices). The crust was soft and tasted fresh.

I don’t really like tomato sauce, so I was very happy with the fact that mine did not have any on it. The sauce was not used in an overpowering way, either.

I also got a Mango + Passion Fruit Housemade Craft Soda ($2.50). They had a soda fountain machine set up in the restaurant that had multiple options. Before the ordering station, there is a section with bottles of water and different flavors of &tea.

My soda was very refreshing. It reminded me of a Chubby drink I used to have when I was younger. It was a nice change from my usual go-to of either Pepsi or Mountain Dew.

Craft Your Own Pizza and a bottle of water is $12.25. (Talia Dennis/Bloc Reporter)

Talia: When I normally get pizza, I’m a Plain Jane — cheese, please. Sometimes I do shake things up, like this time. I got the Craft Your Own Pizza ($9.32), which is literally the best idea ever for picky people like me.

I had three options for dough. I chose the traditional one and classic tomato sauce. For my toppings, I had mozzarella cheese, broccoli and tomatoes. I wanted to add chicken, but they were out after being open for about an hour.

After my pizza came out of the oven, I had parmesan cheese sprinkled over it. The dough, sauce and mozzarella were all cooked together, so the tomatoes, broccoli and parmesan were harder to keep on the pizza. However, every bite was delicious and full of flavor.

The dough was cooked through, but definitely lightly. While I was eating my pizza, the word “light” kept coming to mind, especially after I had a bite of Taylor’s pizza.

The size of my pizza was perfect. I felt full after eating it, but not an uncomfortable full. I was also very content with the price. I could have as many toppings as I wanted for the same price.

Final Thoughts: Overall, this is a great place to go for lunch (& pizza). The Columbia Heights location is perfect because there are many shops to go into before and/or after eating.

The pricing is reasonable. It is not the typical “movie and PJs” pizza, but rather an “out and about” weekend treat. Regardless, we are excited to return and try some new pizza, or possibly the same ones we got this time.

Featured Photo Credit: The &pizza shop located in Colombia Heights. (Talia Dennis/Bloc Reporter)

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