Floridians Love California Pizza Kitchen
California Pizza Kitchen is a casual eatery that has its roots in Beverly Hills, California. In 1985, when I was just three years old, former federal prosecuters Rick Rosenfield and Larry Flax created the open kitchen style restaurant known as California Pizza Kitchen. Now, New York, Chicago, and California have their own rendition of pizza. California Pizza Kitchen is in over 250 locations in more than 30 states and 11 countries. They are also located in stadiums, airports, and on college campuses. They have definitely set their mark on the world in the last twenty years.
I have personally only been to three California Pizza Kitchen locations in Florida, even though I am quite sure that they have spread their wings further through our beautiful sunshine state. The three locations (Pembroke Pines, Sunrise, and Ft. Lauderdale) that I have been to are all very consistent with the brand and will be included in this review.
Since, I am originally from New York, I am very bias when it comes to pizza, so I don't think that California Pizza Kitchen will be stealing the pizza crown for the country anytime soon. However, their pizza dough is unique because it has less calories and sugars than most pizzas. Also, my husband and nephews love the pizza at California Pizza Kitchen.
For me, I like the open kitchen premise, casual dining atmosphere, and friendly customer service. The drinks are fruity and innovative. Also, the quality of the food is good and the price is reasonable.
I love to take a peek in every kitchen that I eat at and California Pizza Kitchen offers a lot more than a glimpse of your meal. The chefs share the entire experience. A transparent restaurant makes me feel like they are proud of their ingredients and the process they go through to get the food to the table.
California Pizza Kitchen is a great place to go with the family because they have a great kids menu and puzzles to keep the kiddies busy. The customer service is really good and the staff seems so genuine.
I love that they have a non-alchoholic menu for the non-drinkers that still want a fun and flirty drink. They serve great lemonades, frozen drinks, and ice teas in addition to their carbonated beverages. My husband usually orders the "Sangria Flight," which is three 3 oz glasses of different types of sangria offered at the restaurant. We usually try to rank the Sangria in order of our preference, but it is quite difficult because they are all so good!
For my appetizer, I have had the soups before and they are very tasty. They have an option to get two soups in one bowl separated by the consistency of the soup. It's pretty cool, unless the two soups don't taste well together when you get to the soup median.
For our main entree, most of the dishes are amazing. However, my personal favorites are the "Fire-Grilled Ribeye" and the "Chicken Milanese." The ribeye is 12 oz and it's topped with a bleu cheese butter! Yum! It is served with fingerling potatoes and wild arugula salad. The Chicken Milanese is a panko-crusted chicken breast topped with wild arugula and a house sauce.
Would I recommend it: Yes, California Pizza Kitchen is a great place for a casual lunch or dinner for a family or couple.