Compared to some, Akron in Ohio is a relatively new city as it wasn't founded until well into the 1800s. It didn't waste any time in catching up with more established cities of the founding era and when town planners excavated a canal which connected it to Beaver in Pennsylvania, it was well and truly on the map. With the new transport route for merchandise in operation, Akron entered into a period of industrialization and many new factories producing a wide range of products were opened. Akron's industrialization didn't come to a halt, but continued to grow at a rapid pace when several rubber companies relocated there. Akron became known as the Rubber Capital of The World and it's a position it hasn't relinquished even now that most companies produce goods made from polymer rather than rubber. While many of the original Italian migrants who resettled in Akron were employed by the big manufacturing companies, it didn't take them long to save up enough funds to open the city's first pizzeria and they've been serving them ever since.
It would be simple enough to say that Akron is known for thick crust pizza and leave it at that, but it wouldn't be quite right. Yes, Akron is known for thick crust pizzas, but on the pizzeria menus of this Ohio city you'll find every type of thick crust pie under the sun so take the previous statement as nothing more than what it is- a generalization. Everyone knows that thick crust pizza is the original type of pizza that has been baked in Italy for hundreds of years if not millennia. What most people fail to realize, though, is how traditional thick crust is actually prepared varies from region to region of the country. Some of those variations like Sicilian, Roman, and Neapolitan are served in pizzerias all over America, but there are many more that haven't yet crossed the Atlantic. If someone tells you they've invented a new type of pie, forget it. It's probably one that's been made in Italy for years.
There's a pizzeria on Goodyear Boulevard called the Italian Garden and they make the best delivery pizza in Akron. There's no particular reason why it's called the Italian Garden as a patch of flower beds is one thing they are definitely short of, although they do water the plants in the window boxes regularly. This pizzeria's premises looks more like a fast food burger joint than it does an Italian trattoria, with garden or without, and fast is what they concentrate on, especially when getting pizzas delivered. They certainly don't hang about when they're pounding out the dough. The Italian Garden sends out some great delivery pizzas from their converted container and they are pizzas of quality too. You'll be more than satisfied by what arrives at your door in a box if you choose a pie like their Balboa or Nacho Cheese Crunch, which they top to their own creative and very original recipe.
If you've just left Canal Park in Downtown Akron after watching the Rubber Ducks lose yet another game of baseball and need a take-out pizza to staunch the misery, you won't have far to go to pick up the best take-out pizza in Akron. Davinci's Pizza is less than two minutes walk away on Main Street and they bake the best take-out pizza in the city. DaVinci's occupies the lower floor of a smart-looking brownstone and has a tidy entrance greatly enhanced by the two park benches placed outside for their customers to sit on. The interior décor is a nod to the Italian flag and done in shades of red, white, and green. These guy's pies are as artistic as their décor and a real eye-pleasing treat to eat. When you're there, check out the Whole Shebang and you're bound to agree.
There are several different directions you can go to escape Akron for a while. Take the I-76 eastbound and drive for about half an hour and you'll come to Ravenna. While unlike its namesake city in Italy, there's nothing much of note there, it is bordered by the West Branch State Park. In the five thousand acres the park encompasses there's a lake for boating, fishing or swimming as well as over forty miles of trails for hiking or cycling. It's a great spot for winter sports too. If you don't feel up to lighting a barbecue and having dinner under the stars, head back into Ravenna for a pizza at Gionino's Pizzeria on East Main Street.
Head south from Akron down the Main Street for around five miles and you'll notice a distinct change in the landscape as you approach Portage Lakes. In Portage Lakes the buildings are not surrounded by gardens but bordered by kettle lakes which makes for some interesting scenery. There's not a lot of anything else to look at so carry on a little further until you come to the Portage Lakes State Park. In the park you can not only look at the water but hike the portage trail between the lakes. It's a peaceful way to spend an afternoon before going for a meal at Da Guild Pizza on Manchester Road.
Probably the main reason anyone would want to make the twenty-minute drive west cross country between Akron and Wadsworth is to replenish their wine supply. Wadsworth is a community with city classification, but Google it and you'll soon discover its main attraction is listed as the local dog park. If you're not traveling with your pooch it's a good idea to skip going there and head for either the Silver Run Vineyard and Winery or The Winery at Wolf Creek. You'll find the visits there a lot more interesting once you get stuck into a sampling session. Before you drive back to Akron stop off at Pizzazio's on Broad for a pizza.
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best veggie pizza in Akron?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best calzone pizza in Akron?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best New York-style pizza in Akron?
Q: 🍕What restaurant has the best gourmet pizza in Akron?