Friday, September 28, 2007
Cracker Crust Pizza & Armadillo Eggs at Main Street Pizza in El Dorado.
But there's a treasure you might not know about -- just because you can't see it from the town square. And if you don't know about it, that's a real shame.
Well, a momentary shame -- because you're about to learn about this place. Read on.
It's not something that will take you back to oil boom times, but it's still a bit of a time machine -- bringing you back to the days when cracker crust pizza was the rage.
Main Street Pizza is a bright spot on dark evenings, a place to bring the family or a date for good food in a clean fun atmosphere. Here you'll find tables and booths just itching to take you back to yesterday.
The menu is full of good ideas... plenty of salads, lots of sandwich options (including what is purported to be South Arkansas' best Reuben sandwich), and of course the pizzas. You can order large and extra large pizzas, either one of the specials or a "build your own" buffet of choices, rivaled only by Central Arkansas' U.S. Pizza Company. Unlike that particular chain, Main Street Pizza still has green olives as a selection -- a real blast from the past.
My traveling companion and I decided to go for individual pizzas this particular Sunday. The restaurant, which had been half empty when we walked in just before noon, quickly filled with families in their Sunday best. The waitress was wonderfully polite, bringing us iced tea right away along with our bucket of peanuts, before taking our order to the kitchen.
It took less than a minute for our pizzas to be taken from the oven on paddles, shuffled off onto serving plates, passed across the counter and rolled under our noses. Honestly, we couldn't resist. I had planned to take a picture of our divine pies before we ate, but the aroma was just too much, and we dug right in.
The restaurant sure doesn't skimp on toppings, either. And the prices were more than reasonable. For our individual pies, the price started at $2.49 for cheese and a quarter for each additional topping. With our drinks, we had a great lunch for under $10.
While knoshing, I looked over and noticed one of the house specialties being pulled from the oven. I just had to get a shot.
These are armadillo eggs.
Well, no, not eggs from real, living armadillos. These unusual treats are very popular here -- in fact, in the short time we were in the store, several baskets went out.
These started life as jalapeno peppers -- they were stuffed with cheese, just like all good stuffed peppers are stuffed. But Main Street Pizza goes off the beaten path after that. Instead of a traditional breading, the peppers are wrapped in sausage, then wrapped again in biscuit dough. These would be the Arkansas equivalent of Scotch Eggs, and they are mighty popular.
You'll find Main Street Pizza on the corner of Main and Jackson, about a block off the square in El Dorado. For more information, call the restaurant at (870) 863-0505.
UPDATE 8/24/17: After all this time, Main Street Pizza is still around. But today, there's a lot more going on in El Dorado. Check out these other stories from El Dorado:
South Arkansas Arboretum
The Last Minute Man Restaurant
El Dorado Creamery
Union Square Guest Quarters