Food Test: Pizza at Cosi

My day at work was pretty cramped with all kind of important projects despite the fact that in theory it should be quieter because of the upcoming holiday weekend. So I was glad to go to the Y for my workout and take my thoughts off of work. It wasn’t particularly busy at the Y either, so I got through my routine fairly fast.

After that I was really hungry and with the weather being as nice as it was, the only choice was to look for a place in Westfield where I could sit outside, work a bit on my computer (like writing this blog entry) and maybe meet a few friends.

I was in the mood for pizza and hadn’t tried the one at Cosi before. So the decision was made without hesitation. (Now, this does not mean that Cosi has the best pizza in Westfield. Comparing the different pizza places in Westfield would be an interesting exercise)

Cosi is a Sandwich, Salad and Pizza place that started in Westfield several months ago at a location where over the last few years several other restaurants had failed. The ones that failed were both individual place and chain restaurants. I hope it works out for them as I feel it is a nice addition to the Westfield Restaurant landscape. And it being there will ensure that Panera doesn’t loose its focus on the customer. Competition is good for the customer.

I ordered the meat lovers pizza with pepperoni, sausage and bacon. The pizza arrives in a timely manner and fresh and hot from the oven. But for my typical pizza preferences it is a bit disappointing. The taste is actually good. The different ingredients combine quite nicely. But the dough is a bit too thick and chewy. I didn’t expect a thin-crust pizza, but a little less dough would have helped. And for the price ($13.95) it was actually a bit small. The diameter was a bit larger than what you would call an “individual pizza” but not that much larger. It was certainly significantly smaller than the pizza you would get at the neighboring Cosimo (not related to Cosi at all). It is enough for a hungry individual like me but for a couple even with reasonable craving it is not sufficient at all. So if two people have to order two of these pizzas, it actually gets a bit expensive and a full service restaurant becomes a better deal.

Otherwise, the service is friendly and efficient. The seating area inside is nice and stylish (albeit not actually cozy). Outside seating is what it typically is in Westfield: Chairs and tables on the sidewalk, but that is perfectly OK.

Another drawback of Cosi: They don’t have wireless Internet access. I’m sure they thought about it (as other Cosi do have it and the competitor on the other side is marketing it). I guess they dismissed is. Why would they do that as it is a fairly low-cost item. My theory: As the seating area is a bit small, they probably don’t want to encourage people to hang out during the peak times. That may be one of the reasons why they decided against it. Otherwise they may end up with several individual people sitting there with a computer for hours sipping the free-refill coffee while the tables are not available for higher turnover customers.

Although, I like Cosi in general quite a bit (a review of sandwich and salad will follow), not having wireless Internet, is probably at least on reason for me to get back to Panera also.

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