TripAdvisor recently named the best pizzeria in every state and Pizza Pedal’r, situated at the base of Winter Park Resort was crowned as the best pizzeria in Colorado.
Known to locals as just ‘The Pedal’r’, they’re famous for doing things a little differently (have you ever had ranch dressing or sweet potato fries on a pizza?). And although the award came as a bit of a shock to owner Rick Marion, he told the Sky-Hi Daily News he is honored:
“It’s incredible, I mean we didn’t believe it at first,” Rick said. “There’s a lot of great pizza places, but it’s a great honor to be identified as that.”
In 2010 Rick saw an opportunity at the resort. They had a brand new purpose built village at the base of the mountain that had bars, Mexican, a soup place, a creperie, and a Starbucks. What they didn’t have was a pizza place. Pizza Pedal’r (so called in recognition of the huge summer mountain bike scene at the resort) opened in November of that year and has gone from strength to strength, with many people returning to the resort just to visit Pizza Pedal’r. It currently has a 4.5 out of five rating with almost 300 reviews on TripAdvisor and they added a second venue in downtown Denver a few years ago.
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TripAdvisor based its rankings on the ratio and quality of diners’ reviews in the year. In order to be considered a top pizzeria in each state, the restaurants were required to have at least 100 reviews and at least a four out of five rating, with less than 10 locations as of September of this year.
All pizzas, available in 3 sizes, or by the (huge) slice, are made fresh to order, and from the freshest ingredients. The dough is made daily in-house using their own secret high-altitude recipe, and the pizza hand-tossed right in front of your eyes (the kids love this!). This might mean your slice takes a little longer, but once you take that first bite, it was totally worth the wait. Many of the reviews for Pizza Pedal’r on TripAdvisor praised the service and quality of the pizzas, including the fact that there aren’t any pizzas sitting out and waiting for customers.
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Rick added he believed it was the combination of good food, good service and a unique atmosphere that contributed to the positive reviews. What could be better after pounding the famous Mary Jane moguls all-day, or lapping the backcountry terrain of the Cirque, than a freshly made slice of pie and an ice cold local micro-brew?
“We have just a really fun, cool vibe of the restaurant, great employees that make it an enjoyable place, so not just the pizza is great, but the whole experience is what’s fun,” he said. “Everything that we do is from scratch from the beginning to the end of the pizza essentially, including slices.”
Marion said the customizable slices are a big draw for the restaurant, especially being at the resort (happy hour is a huge slice and a PBR – the unofficial diet of the skibum), but he also said the Hardtail pizza is one of the most popular menu items and his personal favorite.
“It’s great because (the cream cheese) kind of cuts the heat from the jalapeños and it’s just dollops of cream cheese so it’s not overbearing, it’s just enough to cool it down so it’s a neat combination,” he explained.
For me, the Yardsale; a combination of ranch dressing, mozzarella cheese, buffalo chicken, bacon, red onion, and topped with sweet potato fries is the bomb. Or maybe it’s the Bunnyhop; BBQ sauce, mozzarella cheese, BBQ chicken, red onion, roasted red peppers, topped with cheddar cheese. No wait, it could be the Trackstand. Or the Kicker…