Il Primo Pizza and Wings, Phoenix, Arizona Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Il Primo Pizza and Wings, Phoenix, Arizona

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Unlike most places advertising 'Pizza and Wings', Il Primo serves only these two treats. For Arizona pizza, it is very good, and their mild buffalo wings are phenomenal.

Il Primo makes its home in northern Phoenix, AZ at the intersection of Bell and Cave Creek roads. They have three locations, all in the Phoenix area; this is just one of them. The restaurant may not look as fancy as other eateries further west on Bell Road (such as Olive Garden, IHOP, Outback Steakhouse, and Boston Market), but the food is good and reasonably priced.

Walking in, there are a few gaming machines to the right and a sparsely-furnished dine-in area. A gigantic TV on one wall is usually showing the latest Arizona football game. Each table and booth has a rack for holding a pizza surrounded by a napkin dispenser - nice for conserving table space. One counter for placing orders, a PA system for order-calling, and bathrooms behind the back exit sign complete the fundamentals of this medium-sized restaurant.

Drink choices are draft beer or fountain Coca-Cola products with free refills (Sprite, Mr Pibb, Barq's, Hi-C, Coke and Diet Coke), but the real reason why people come here is the food.

Il Primo serves three sizes of pizza with 18 possible topping choices (including such rarities as beef, broccoli, and zucchini). They also have four speciality pizzas; one of their most popular, the Il Primo Special, has pepperoni, mushrooms, sausage, onions, bell peppers, and olives. They serve a Bacon Cheeseburger pizza piled high with beef while the Hot Tamale includes pepperoni and tons of jalapeno peppers. There's also a pizza for the vegetarians among us which is topped with broccoli, onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, zucchini, olives, fresh tomato, and extra cheese.

Il Primo makes good pizza - the only possibly lacking ingredient is the sauce (it is a very basic tomato). There are no differing crust sizes (ie, thin/medium/deep dish) as there are in Chicago-style restaurants1, but the crust is a nice thickness and bakes up tall. Should it matter, there is cornstarch along its edges.

There are five different styles of buffalo wings (mild, medium, hot, suicide, and BBQ) with dipping sauces of blue cheese or ranch dressing. The mild wings have a fantastic, unique flavour, but the spicier ones are flavoured somewhat more commonly. Their wings come in sizes of 10, 20, 40, or 80, ranging from $4.49 to $24.992. Also, they do not offer any celery sticks with the wings, although the combination of spicy wings and cool celery is a long-time tradition in the buffalo wing world.

Il Primo also sells pizza and wings together in combos, a nifty idea that combines a certain number of wings and pizzas for a lower price. Because of this, it's cheaper to buy a combo of 40 wings and an extra large pizza than to buy 40 wings and two mini pizzas, plus there is more food in the combo. Definitely nice for one’s wallet.

The atmosphere at Il Primo is rather non-existent, but the quality of the food items that they offer rivals that of the larger chain restaurants nearby. If you’re in the area, Il Primo makes a great meal!

1It is generally agreed that Chicago contains the epitome of American pizza.2Prices, etc, true as of December 2001.

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