Giorgio’s Pizza6925 S Virginia St.
Reno, NV 89511
Quick: What comes to mind when you hear the words “Giorgio’s handspun gourmet pizza”? Mario Brother look-alikes spinning pizzas like Frisbees between sips of Nocello? Exactly—and you’re as wrong as I was.
On a Friday night, my husband and I headed to Giorgio’s, rife with all the presumptions prodded by the name. But lo, there was no quiet music and not a candle on the table. Instead, the first thing to greet us was a giant, plastic genie.
Giorgio’s is not just a non-stereotypical pizza joint. It’s attached to Magic Carpet Golf, a miniature golf course and arcade. The pizza is more of an afterthought. Off to our right as we entered were handwritten menus on various white boards. Weaving in and out of various states of visibility was a busy but friendly server/cook, who eventually took our order and directed us to the patio. I surveyed the four tables hidden behind the pizza station and opted to take his advice. During winter months, inside eating at Giorgio’s might be cramped.
But this was September, the weather was still agreeable, and the patio open. I need to point out that the tables outside could have used a hosing down—or two. After a quick wipe off with a sterile Kleenex, we sat and took stock of our surroundings. A giant water fountain perfectly drowned out the traffic from Virginia as we entered into what really is its own little world. The patio is in the middle of the golf course, and we were thus under constant surveillance by giant ants, spiders and dinosaurs. We were close enough to a medieval castle to lay siege, and in general were surrounded by various objects both fairytale and extinct. The place was quite busy that Friday, with pretty much every demographic of Reno represented. There were families with squealing children, two or three quiet couples on awkward dates and a group of teenagers, posturing for us and each other, and squabbling over who should keep score. So far everyone was having fun, including us.
Now, for the pizza. Giorgio makes a big claim on his menu: “You’ve tried the rest, now try the best.” Despite the cliché, we wondered if this might not be true. Had we fortuitously stumbled upon some hidden gem? The menu certainly looked promising. We ordered a large pizza ($19.95), half of it veggie gourmet (mushrooms, olives, bell peppers, onions, feta, garlic and artichoke hearts) and half Great White (mozzarella, spinach, provolone, olive oil, garlic, parmesan and sun-dried tomatoes).
Our pizza was served on the patio with a stack of napkins but only two paper plates. After the first slice of pizza, my plate was soaked through. We also asked for red pepper flakes and parmesan, which were quickly forthcoming but unfortunately, either they were nearly out or just forgot to refill their containers. After two slices the wells had run dry, and we settled for eating the rest without our usual spiciness. On the pizza, too, it seems they had run out of a few ingredients. Artichoke hearts and feta cheese were nowhere to be found, and the rest of the ingredients seemed stingily applied. Overall, the pizza was middling, a decent meal for a little more than a decent buck, but certainly nothing to stand up and shout about. We found it a bit dry, and the crust tasteless. Oh, it also stuck to the paper that lined the bottom of the pan, so once, before I noticed, I found myself nibbling on paper.
So, no, I cannot unequivocally recommend the pizza, but for families out golfing and enjoying the last days of summer, Giorgio’s pizza, even though not the best in town, might be a fitting finish. Perhaps Giorgio’s is at its best when the main attraction is not the food but the fun.