Sunday, November 23, 2014

Foodie Post: Lilly's Pizza in Durham

I had a great Saturday morning out with my four year old.  We ventured out to the Life & Science Museum in Durham, North Carolina.  Lots of cool stuff there, especially the dinosaur trail.  The trail is about a half mile walk and features different dinosaurs along the way.  I walked the trail about four times yesterday with my son in between trips to the museum's butterfly house, looking at wolves and bears, the barnyard, and a ride on the miniature train.

After walking around looking at dinosaurs for a few hours we ventured into downtown Durham for some pizza.  Last summer I had done my first foodie post on the pizza in Missouri.  Pizza in North Carolina is a little bit different.  There are not a ton of great stand alone pizza places in the area, not to say there are none, but there is definitely limited selection of truly good pizza places.  Yesterday my son and I ventured out to Lilly's Pizza in Durham after our time walking the dinosaur trail at the Life & Science Museum.  

There are actually two Lilly's pizza locations in the Raleigh-Durham area.  The original Lilly's Pizza is off of Wade Avenue not too far away from NC State.  My wife introduced me to the restaurant sometime in 2006 or 2007.  I am not sure when Durham got a Lilly's Pizza, but it is in the downtown area and convenient to the Durham Bulls Athletic Park, Duke U, or most of the other attractions in the area.  Both locations offer the same great pies made from delicious organic ingredients.

The best items to order at Lilly's are the speciality pizzas.  Lots of good choices.  They also come in all different sizes.  Since my son is strictly a cheese or sausage pizza guy I ordered a small pizza, which is still a generous portion, along with a house salad.  The salads are also incredible.  Yesterday I ordered one of my favorite specialty pies called The Sir Walter which is a mushroom and prosciutto pizza with gouda and mozzarella cheese.  The Sir Walter has a great kick of garlic which I love.  Lilly's Pizza also has great crust.  It's soft and chewy.  If it were a menu item I would order it.   Some of my other favorite pizza at Lilly's include The Gus, The Tobacco Stacker, and my wife (she a way bigger foodie than me) loves the barbecued chicken pizza Dante's Inferno.  My pizza are always olive or mushroom heavy.

If you want something simpler Lilly's also sells pizza by the slice.  The slices are generous and the toppings are really good.  My son did a slice of sausage pizza.  Really great ingredients and the same chewy, soft crust as their full sized pies.  He was a big fan of pizza.

Just to give you an idea of how big the single slices are at Lilly's, his one slice of sausage pizza was not much smaller than my small pizza.  Same sized tray.  Overall, this is one of the real pizza gems in North Carolina.  If you live in Raleigh, Durham, or somewhere nearby and have not been to a Lilly's Pizza you are missing out on a good meal.  If you ever happen to visit the area and want a good meal this is one must visit restaurant.  

FYI- Lilly's makes for some great leftovers too.  Maybe I am weird, probably, but I love leftover pizza.  One of the measuring sticks for a great pizza is eating it for the next meal or the next day after it has sat in the fridge for awhile.  Lilly's is delicious cold or reheated.  Overall, again, a great pizza place.

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