Following a discussion which began on the T.O.P.S. Pizza thread I decided to check out Reno’s Pizza in Rosemount to see if the claims that it wasn’t as good as people have claimed it to be were true. Following a blown visit on Tuesday due to their ovens not being ready, we returned on Thursday evening to try again and took a seat inside the very empty restaurant for dinner.
Reno’s website provides a cute little history about the place saying that it was founded 33+ years ago in East St. Paul before being moved to Rosemount in 1980. Up until 2010 it was run by the original owner before being passed down to their grandson who currently handles the day-to-day operations of the place.
While the website notes that some renovations were done, Reno’s is a major dive. There is still a lot of work to be done and The Wife noted she’s pretty certain the owner is single as it definitely needs a woman’s touch to make it a little more attractive to dine-in. Being that in the 45 minutes we were there all but one person did takeout, we guessed that it was mostly a delivery and take-out spot even though there were numerous tables and booths available.
Reno’s menu is simple and includes a couple of appetizers, some pasta entrees and a few sandwiches but is mostly dominated by pizzas coming in 10, 12, and 14″ sizes. While their plain, one and two topping pizzas appeared reasonably priced to me ($13.10 for a one-topping large) a lot of people online complain that the prices are just too high. Most of the specialty pizzas, such as the Reno’s specials ran close to $20 for a large which I must admit is a bit much for my tastes.
We ordered a 14″ mushroom, a half-order appetizer of jalapeno cheese bread, and two Sprites. After only a few minutes both our jalapeno cheese bread and our pizza arrived at the same time. Cut in squares, loaded with cheese, and oozing tomato sauce, this was a very typical Midwestern style pizza presentation in each and every way. Even so, we apparently received a pizza very similar to what reader sparksals did when they commented that the pizza was burned on the edges and doughy in the middle. While ours was not doughy in the middle, the edges were definitely burned and cooked closer to proper in the middle. I didn’t mind it as much as sparksals did but certainly could see where it could be viewed as something that should not have left the kitchen.
The pizza itself was fine. A lot of sauce which tasted a little tart, a lot of cheese, but not enough mushrooms. I wasn’t impressed enough to make this a regular pizza joint for me and while I cannot fathom why anyone likes the Midwestern-style pizza genre, it wasn’t any better or worse than 99% of the other Midwestern style pizza places I have visited in Minnesota. The jalapeno cheese bread wasn’t anymore exciting than the pizza. French bread with mozzarella, jarred jalapenos (although they were a bit spicy!), and a side of marinara dipping sauce it was enjoyable but definitely something which anyone with a toaster oven could make at home in less time and just as good.
The owner, Mike, was on site both on Tuesday (when he informed us the ovens weren’t up and running) as well as last night and he had one other employee working who did most of the order taking and table service. Both were attentive and the owner later checked up on us to see how we thought everything was. Nice guy working hard to keep a family business running for another 30+ years. I have to admit that while the food was average at best, I have a lot of respect for someone willing to keep a family business alive which many people in Rosemount believe is some of the best pizza in town.
Overall while I definitely won’t go out of my way to visit Reno’s again, if I were in Rosemount I’d rather stop there than Fireside, TOPS, or Carbone’s. Have you ever had Reno’s Pizza in Rosemount? If so what did you think about it? What is your favorite thing to order there? Have you ever dined-in? Whatever you have to say about Reno’s go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.
14555 S Robert Trl
Rosemount, MN 55068
Sunday – Thursday: 4 PM – 10 PM
Friday – Saturday: 4 PM – 11 PM
See all the pictures from Reno’s Pizza in Rosemount on Flickr here.