Sunday, July 20, 2014

Management Inspection - Pizza Hut's New, Big-ish Cookie

Ever bringing you new and compelling product reviews here at the Moonlight Motel, especially when we can eat them, here's something I discovered just yesterday! As far as I know, it's the latest dessert offering from my second favorite place to get pizza (third if you count school, though I guess they don't make that incredible, boat-shaped pizza anymore): Pizza Hut. Of course, my first favorite place remains the Alamo Drafthouse, ever since I discovered it a few years back. Anyway, this is my review of Pizza Hut's new Ultimate Hershey's Chocolate Chip Cookie.

Quick bit of background for ya. I grew up in a Pizza Hut family. It was the southernmost tip of Texas, and back in the day, Pizza Hut was a pretty cool place to go, and the best way to eat their pizza has always been in the restaurant, while it's hot and fresh. My parents always ordered a Pan Pizza (beef, pepperoni, and mushroom), which is incredible when fresh out, but not so much when cold or reheated. We'd get a pitcher of root beer, there'd be a jukebox that always had Hotel California as an option, thankfully, and the whole place was dimly lit and very red. It was a cool place. Plus, little jars of parmesan cheese on every table. I am big on parmesan cheese. Unscrew the lid big. I murder my pizza with it. Anywho, that was back in the day, and I don't recall Pizza Hut having desserts back then, just a salad bar. They didn't have wings, and they didn't have these little quick stop restaurants meant only for pick up and delivery orders. It was a different time.

Anywho, I roll with the flow since I have no choice. The other day, I strolled into one of those little Pizza Hut quickie places, as I was jonesin' for the Pizza Hut pizza I have been exclusively hooked on for years, the original stuffed crust. Sometimes, I get my usual beef, pepperoni, and mushroom, which I was raised on, but this time I opted for just pepperoni. Might actually prefer stuffed crust that way, in fact. Well, while heading in to place my order with a very sweet girl behind the counter (this was here in North Austin; I forget the street, but maybe Braker or Rundberg; it was just off I-35 and near my day-job), when I saw the add you see posted above. Well, it looked good, I'm sort of a cookie monster, and it was one less thing I'd have to pick up at H.E.B. on the way home while my pizza was getting cold (still had to get parmesan, root beer, and milk). So, I decided, sure, I'll take one of these Ultimate Cookies too.

And, there you have it, in its box, sitting atop my large stuffed crust pizza box in the photo above. As you can see, the ad is a bit tricky. I thought this cookie was going to be bigger. Not Great American Cookie Co. big cookie big, but a bit closer to the pizza size than that...

Now, I have to give them credit. It must be a new policy or something, but this place opened the boxes to get my approval on both my pizza and my "ultimate cookie" before I left the Hut. But, as you can see, the disappointingly not-all-that-big cookie above was actually burned on the edges. Being waaay too nice though, I pretended not to think much of that. I also thought the cookie would be pre-sliced, like the pizza, but no luck. Now, it WAS served-up hot, but of course, by the time I got it home and finished eating my portion of pizza, it was no longer warm. Of course, that's nobody's fault but science...

Well, the pizza was great, though my pit stop for root beer, parmesan and milk did mean I had to nuke it very briefly, but that's fine with stuffed crust, especially since it was still pretty fresh. Oh, I also ordered a couple of sides of marinara sauce. They are like 50 cents there and great for dipping stuffed crust, and Pizza Hut has the best marinara. But, getting back to the cookie. As you see above, after my pizza, I cut myself a slice. I nuked it briefly too, and my assessment... Well, honestly, it was better than I thought it'd be! However, that's not saying it's Great American Cookie Co. big cookie good. No, this tasted A LOT like if I'd bought a roll of chocolate chip cookie dough at the grocery store and baked some cookies. Delicious, and for some reason even those burned edges didn't taste burned (don't know how that worked), but in all honestly, for 4.99 (pizza purchase required), well, I think I'd get more cookies out of a roll of cookie dough from H.E.B. for a buck less. So, when you come down to it, it's all about the convenience of getting it right there at the Pizza Hut and not having to bake it yourself, though you still might have to heat it up anyway. It was delicious though, both warmed up and cold from the fridge. I just think I might have been better off picking up a Tollhouse roll and saving a buck since I was going to the store anyway. Had I not been making that pit-stop, then this would have been fine, if not the better bargain. The size was a little disappointing though, ha. Maybe that makes me a greedy pig, but I LOVE pizza and cookies A LOT.

The last thing I'll say about this new item, is that it seems to mean the loss of the Hershey's Chocolate Dunkers option, at least from what I've been able to tell. Now, while those just looked like breadsticks with chocolate on top and a dunking sauce, a tactic I've never been a fan of for pizzeria desserts, the fact is that they tasted phenomenal! Really! No joke! I definitely shed a tear for their loss! It seems like everyone is just offering cookies these days, actually. KFC didn't have their hot apple pies, last time I checked, and Chik-Fil-A got rid of their famous brownies! What's up with that! I mean, I love chocolate chip cookies, but if I want them, I'm going to get them at the store where I can get a whole roll or bag rather than buy them one cookie at a time (I'll only do that at the Great American Cookie Co., or I guess they're just called Great American Cookies now; my bad). Well, at least Pizza the Hut is offering a semi-big one, but I miss those other desserts that were more unique to their sources. Overall though, as I said, this is a delicious item that is fine for convenience, even if not the most bang for your buck. If you are going to the store anyway, just get your cookies for dessert there. If not, yeah, I can softly recommend this.

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