Let's just get one thing out of the way; I think deep dish pizza is overrated. I know this might be of unpopular opinion, but nothing really excites me about thick crust, loaded cheeses and larger than life meats and vegetables. Because of this feeling toward deep dish, I decided to try my luck at Pizza Man--known for its thin and pan crust pizzas, before I headed back home to Illinois, the same place where deep dish reigns supreme,
Located in on 2597 N Downer Ave on Milwaukee's east side, Pizza Man sits quietly across from Cafe Hollander and has modern appeal with old school eats. (They have a location in Wauwatosa too) Pizza man offers what some pizza places don't, a place to sit, dine and enjoy pizza with family, friends and loved ones. Upon my arrival, I truly felt like I was walking into a home with large, wooden rustic doors, larger glass windows providing views of Milwaukee and a chandelier made of colored glass wine bottles, to name a few features.
My party and I decided to eat outside, and we were taken upstairs like we were at a friend's house about to relax and grab a bite to eat-something we were about to do. The patio was refreshing and also provided me with more perspective on Pizza Man's upscale and warm ambiance. Once we settled in, we started to scan the menu and tried to lock in on a few options. Pizza Man offers their own specialty pizzas that mitigate the process of creating your own master pie, but living on the edge for food is an adventure in itself so we created a pizza that included chicken, mozzarella, spinach and mushrooms, all sitting atop a garlic sauce base. Pizza Man also has extensive drink menu, but wine was not high on my priority list during this food visit. (Not like it ever is) The waitress forgot to give us our silverware and cloth napkins until we received our appetizers, but apologized and displayed a sweet and sincere attitude when doing so.
I would recommend creating your own pizza because it adds to the experience and puts you in control. Our waitress also walked us through what ingredients work well with the tomato, garlic and other bases so this was very helpful. I should mention that the prices here are not the cheapest, as their 14" pie runs around 22 bucks for the ingredients mentioned above. That said, you always get what you pay for, and splitting a 14" pizza is common for a party of two.
Potato skins doused in three year cheeses, (whatever that means) and chives with a side of sour cream gave me an opportunity to try an item on their menu that did not run similar to the pizza itself, and I was impressed with how fresh everything tasted. As for my pizza, the garlic sauce was a great decision and worked well with the chicken and other vegetables. The pizza did not taste like it came from a box or premade, my gripe I have with national chains, but instead tasted like it was made from scratch and prepared with care and carefulness. Overall, my experience with Pizza Man's food was up to par and met my standards for food that are higher than most.
Having been to Ian's, Pizza Shuttle, Sals, Transfer Pizza, I can confidently say that Pizza Man offers an opportunity to embrace rich and savory pizza like none other. The environment alone makes it all worthwhile, and their pizza simply seals the deal. Although Pizza Man might not deliver to homes like other pizza joints around Milwaukee, it is safe to say they do when walking inside their homey venue on Milwaukee's east side.