Ever since the September 2009 issue of the Ottawa Magazine published “101 Tastes to Try Before You Die”, an edible guide to Ottawa’s best dishes, I have been almost driven to enumerate the tastes I have already had, catalog them on foodiePrints, and pursue the ones outstanding.
Case in point, gravy pizza. I have long heard that one of Ottawa’s better pizzerias originated the gravy pizza when a slightly intoxicated Montrealer, homesick for poutine, wandered through its doors after a night’s indulgence. He perused the menu for fries, gravy, and cheese curds. Finding no fries, he asked for a slice of pizza and a portion of gravy. The pizzeria was House of Georgie’s (Sorento’s) on 211 Gilmour (at Elgin). The rest is history.
According to the September 2009 issue of the Ottawa Magazine, “fans drive into Ottawa from Toronto and Montreal for the delicacy.” Me, I have already had many opportunities to try House of Georgie’s pizza, enjoying some great delivery pizza, but I kept forgetting to order the side portion of gravy. Here is my first:
It had all the characteristics of a great pizza:
The tomato sauce tasted as if it were carefully simmered. It was much more than just crushed tomatoes, including spices and herbs. The toppings included some fresh mushrooms, spiced pepperoni, and crumbled bacon.
Cost: $19.20 ($17(medium 13″ Canadian), taxes, and including a free 1 L bottle of Coke).
Two weekends ago, I ordered an Extra Large 17″ Combination from House of Georgie’s to take with me to a pot luck dinner party at a neighbour’s. This time, I made sure to include a side of gravy, opting for beef instead of chicken.
To demonstrate how consistently House of Georgie’s makes great pizza, the pictures of the Medium Canadian Pizza were taken a year ago.
This time, though, with gravy:
My thoughts: The gravy added a savoury flavour to an already great pizza. It was somewhat odd to my palate with the bright tomato sauce. The gravy was also very floury. The experience, though, was definitely poutine-esque, the crust substituting for fries. And the melted mozzarella, traditional cheddar cheese curds. I can understand how gravy pizza quenched a poutine craving.
Total: $28.60 ($24(extra large 17″ combination pizza), $0.75(gravy), taxes, and including a free 1 L bottle of Coke)
Would I order it again? The pizza, definitely. The gravy pizza, only after a couple hours’ skating on the Rideau Canal during Winterlude. It rivals Dunn’s smoked meat poutine and beaver tails as signature winter foods in Ottawa.
House of Georgie
211 Gilmour Street
Tags: 101 Tastes to Try Before You Die, House of Georgie's, Ottawa Magazine, pizza, pizzeria