Restaurant Review: Punch Pizza

Angelina Wandzel, Features Writer

Punch Pizza in Eagan is a new restaurant that specializes in Neapolitan style pizza. This type of pizza is baked in a wood-burning brick oven and is typically made with crushed tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and olive oil. Their newest restaurant, located on Central Park Village Drive, is one of 11 locations. It opened on September 18, 2017 and has had a large number of customers since that time so I decided to try it for myself.

The first thing I noticed when I walked into Punch Pizza in Eagan was the lighting. They had light bulbs strung from the ceiling and large windows which lit up the restaurant perfectly. Along with that, no matter how many people were inside, it didn’t seem too crowded or too empty. They had plenty of seating that could fit large families or parties, and in my opinion, it was a nice arrangement. I thought it was nice that they made sure there was enough room for people to stand in line, walk past tables, seat themselves, and go where they needed to. There was plenty of space but small details around the restaurant such as paintings and pictures made the place feel cozy and welcoming.

As for the staff, they all seemed happy to be there. No one looked upset or unhappy with what they were doing. The cooks seemed to be focused on making pizzas and checked with me multiple times to make sure that they were making what I wanted as I was ordering extra toppings. The cashier greeted me with a smile and was polite and very patient. Every staff member at Punch Pizza seemed to have a friendly attitude and good manners. From the cooks to the people bringing pizzas to tables, they were all quick and worked well.

There were many ingredients to choose from but I wanted to stay simple. I decided to order a margarita pizza with pepperoni and black olives. The pizza was a bit soggier than most pizzas that I’ve had in the past and it was hard for me to hold it in my hands so I recommend eating these pizzas with a knife and fork. After all, that’s how Neapolitan pizzas are supposed to be due to the fact that they’re almost always made with crushed tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and olive oil. There wasn’t much sauce on my pizza but there was still a good balance between sauce, olive oil, and the ingredients that I ordered. Speaking of ingredients, I noticed chunks of basil on my pizza. The chunks weren’t really expected but I could barely taste them so it didn’t make much of a difference. Lastly, the pepperoni was a little salty but the olives still made it taste really good. Aside from the pepperoni, the pizza had a light flavor. When I got to the crust on my pizza, I noticed it wasn’t as crisp as I thought it’d be. It tasted good, but it was a bit chewy and I had never eaten pizza like that before so that’s really what made this one original.

I was kind of sad that I had to leave. Punch Pizza was filled with customers, the area was very welcoming, they had nice staff, and their pizza had a very unique flavor. That’s why, overall, my experience at Punch Pizza in Eagan was very good! I’d recommend Punch Pizza to anyone that likes or wants to try Neapolitan style pizza. Personally, I loved how unique their pizza looked and tasted. This was my first time at Punch Pizza but I’m still eager to eat there again and try something new.