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Harbor Country/SW Michigan - Stop 50 Wood Fired Pizzeria

Harbor Country/SW Michigan - Stop 50 Wood Fired Pizzeria
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  • Post #121 - September 7th, 2011, 10:17 am
    Post #121 - September 7th, 2011, 10:17 am Post #121 - September 7th, 2011, 10:17 am
    I've been here several times but we had a pizza here in late-August that absolutely blew us away: sliced heirlooms, rosemary, gorgonzola, red onion, walnuts, grated parm and red balsamic. It was so complex and the crust was just phenomenal. I would agree with everyone else that this is among the very best pizzas I've ever had. (I'd take this over Sally's aPizza or Frank Pepe's anyday!)

    Talked to Chris extensively about his methodology and he's such a cool guy. There's just nothing bad to say about this place.
  • Post #122 - September 7th, 2011, 2:40 pm
    Post #122 - September 7th, 2011, 2:40 pm Post #122 - September 7th, 2011, 2:40 pm
    I've been here several times and walked away unimpressed each time. Pizza was soggy in the middle and virtually flavorless. While I wasn't expecting what I've had in Italy, I expected a lot better than this. Haven't been to Sally's, but I've been to Frank Pepe's on business trips many times and Stop 50 doesn't come close. Given that there are few good places around Michigan City, Stop 50 stands out for its effort, but not much more than that. I really want to like it, but it's just underwhelming.
  • Post #123 - September 7th, 2011, 10:40 pm
    Post #123 - September 7th, 2011, 10:40 pm Post #123 - September 7th, 2011, 10:40 pm
    saps wrote:Pizza was soggy in the middle...

    This isn't a bug, it's a feature! :-)

    (I shouldn't speak... I haven't been yet... but I'll stand up for the soggy center until the day I die.)
    Dominic Armato
    Dining Critic
    The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com
  • Post #124 - September 8th, 2011, 12:17 pm
    Post #124 - September 8th, 2011, 12:17 pm Post #124 - September 8th, 2011, 12:17 pm
    saps wrote:virtually flavorless

    Seriously? After the above description:
    "rosemary, gorgonzola, red onion, walnuts, grated parm and red balsamic"
    Unless you are somehow going out of your way to design the most Spartan pie possible, flavor is available at every turn. You, sir, have lost all credibility (and quite possibly your sense of taste)!
  • Post #125 - October 3rd, 2011, 11:01 am
    Post #125 - October 3rd, 2011, 11:01 am Post #125 - October 3rd, 2011, 11:01 am
    The Chow Poodle and I took and impromptu trip to Michigan last weekend, topped off with early dinner at Stop 50 on Sunday on our way back to town. If anything, Stop 50 has improved with age. Chris was telling me about trying to source more and more of their produce from local farmers and how he is actively visiting neighboring farms to build up relationships. The care they take in sourcing is evident in everything they serve.

    We started off with a simple mixed greens salad. Everything was very fresh and tasty, and the salad was plenty for the two of us to share.

    Stop 50 Local Mixed Greens Salad
    Image

    We also ordered a couple of pizzas; the seasonal pear and gorgonzola, which will be available for at least another couple of weeks, and a sausage.

    Stop 50 Pear & Gorgonzola Pizza
    Image

    Stop 50 Sausage Pizza
    Image

    Both were perfectly cooked and delicious. We thought we'd eat a little bit of both and take the rest home, but when it came time to leave, there were only a couple of slices left. We couldn't resist.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #126 - October 13th, 2011, 1:01 pm
    Post #126 - October 13th, 2011, 1:01 pm Post #126 - October 13th, 2011, 1:01 pm
    My wife and I took our 8 year old niece to Stop 50 this past weekend. Great pizza as usual. What I find so interesting is that for an 8 year old who questions every waitress with "How do you make your macaroni and cheese?" she always looks forward to the pizza, desserts, and other items we order at Stop 50. She always eats her share when she is normally a pretty picky eater. Regarding the M & C question what she wants to know is whether its Kraft or not. If its not Kraft she won't order it. :lol:
    Bruce
    Plenipotentiary
    bruce@bdbbq.com

    Raw meat should NOT have an ingredients list!!
  • Post #127 - April 15th, 2012, 3:03 pm
    Post #127 - April 15th, 2012, 3:03 pm Post #127 - April 15th, 2012, 3:03 pm
    Thank goodness they're open again for the 2012 season. They added a new pizza special that's just wonderful. Roasted Pepper & Ramp Pizza - roasted red & yellow peppers, walnuts, Gorgonzola, red onions finished with fresh ramps, chives & basil. Unfortunately I think this is the last weekend for this special pizza, but I can't wait to see what they come up with next! And I think fresh asparagus is coming soon.
  • Post #128 - June 4th, 2012, 5:59 am
    Post #128 - June 4th, 2012, 5:59 am Post #128 - June 4th, 2012, 5:59 am
    We made a quick trip to Michigan over the Memorial Day weekend. It started with a stop for a late lunch at Stop 50 on our way to Spartanland. We started with a caprese-like salad consisting of some hothouse heirloom tomatoes, homemade mozzarella and basil topped by some high quality balsamic. I was blown away by this salad which tasted as if we had been transported in time to mid-August; prime tomato season.

    Stop 50 Seasonal Salad
    Image

    We followed that up with a seasonal pizza that had prosciutto, fresh picked asparagus, onions and cheese. This was a great springtime pizza and we enjoyed every bite.

    Stop 50 Seasonal Pizza
    Image

    Image

    Everyting was as good as ever. Stop 50 is now open on its summer schecule; 11 - 10 on Thursday - Saturday and 11 - 8 on Sunday & Monday (Closed Tues. & Wed.).
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #129 - June 4th, 2012, 7:30 am
    Post #129 - June 4th, 2012, 7:30 am Post #129 - June 4th, 2012, 7:30 am
    stevez wrote:We started with a caprese-like salad consisting of some hothouse heirloom tomatoes, homemade mozzarella and basil topped by some high quality balsamic. I was blown away by this salad which tasted as if we had been transported in time to mid-August; prime tomato season.


    They're not some hothouse tomatoes, they're from nearby McWethy Farms, a hydroponic grower. McWethy has devised a system to utilize as much sunlight as possible to ripen the tomatoes, and as they're grown nearby, they stay on the vine as long as possible. They are very good for commercially grown, off-season tomatoes.
  • Post #130 - June 4th, 2012, 8:21 am
    Post #130 - June 4th, 2012, 8:21 am Post #130 - June 4th, 2012, 8:21 am
    aschie30 wrote:They are very good for commercially grown, off-season tomatoes.


    Yes they are. I almost didn't order this because of the time of year, but Chris assured me I wouldn't be disappointed. He was right!
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #131 - June 14th, 2012, 10:11 am
    Post #131 - June 14th, 2012, 10:11 am Post #131 - June 14th, 2012, 10:11 am
    ImageImage
    A really good pizza, but would have loved
    to have the added asparagus and prosciutto
    like in the one above.
  • Post #132 - June 29th, 2013, 6:35 pm
    Post #132 - June 29th, 2013, 6:35 pm Post #132 - June 29th, 2013, 6:35 pm
    such a shame I don't get to MI for business as much as I used to, Stop 50 was a regular for me.

    However coming back on the Indiana Toll Road from OH, I saw the exit for Michigan City & knew I had to detour to make a stop for dinner.

    Being a Thurs night during summertime, it was busy when I showed up at 7pm. Thankfully the weather had been iffy so all other customers were inside or had reservations for inside.

    After a quick wipedown of an outside table, I was seated & shortly after had my order in (excellent customer service here, as usual).

    I had the special pizza of the day, a thick sliced bacon & blue cheese pizza with walnuts & a bit of arugula. There was none to take home :)

    Although she has never been, Mrs Sweet Willie is a big fan of Stop 50 as I always order a whole red pie to go (unsliced). I'll then finish it off on the grill or oven with our own toppings the following day, she is a fan !

    Thanks again Stop 50, you guys are terrific.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #133 - August 10th, 2013, 12:20 pm
    Post #133 - August 10th, 2013, 12:20 pm Post #133 - August 10th, 2013, 12:20 pm
    Quick lunch stop today with the featured summer harvest pizza
    image.jpg
  • Post #134 - August 19th, 2013, 7:40 am
    Post #134 - August 19th, 2013, 7:40 am Post #134 - August 19th, 2013, 7:40 am
    A week later, the summer harvest pizza has been replaced by one with peach, prosciutto, red onion and walnut. SueF isn't a peach fan, so we went with the (ordinary) prosciutto and pistachio, which was fantastic. Others at the table had the peach one, and a simple margarita. With a salad and the stuffed peppers, a very nice lunch. Only note is that decent tomatoes must be hard to come by: the salad had pale wan crisp things that I don't consider tomatoes in August.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #135 - October 12th, 2014, 7:13 pm
    Post #135 - October 12th, 2014, 7:13 pm Post #135 - October 12th, 2014, 7:13 pm
    Stopped in on the way back from Ann Arbor and happy to report that the pizza is a good as ever.
  • Post #136 - April 3rd, 2015, 4:32 pm
    Post #136 - April 3rd, 2015, 4:32 pm Post #136 - April 3rd, 2015, 4:32 pm
    Pizza is in my blood and I eat even more of it with a six-year-old boy in tow (or towing me to gym birthday parties): in town at restaurants including V&N, D'amato's, Nella, Coalfire and Forno Rosso, while traveling in good pizza towns like Minneapolis and New York and Florence every few years, at special events including Floriole pizza Friday and Gaetano's experiements and demos at Eataly, in my recurring dreams of Great Lake and the Villa Park Aurelio's of the 80s. Styles I enjoy include even ridiculously overstuffed, Quad Cities Wheat Thins, St. Louis processed, and California Hawaiian. Basic ingredients yield complex and interesting harmonies over varying geographic, temperature, and time distances. It's all good. (except when execution is bad. Worst pizza ever: Kinderhook Tap barbecue chicken. Every. single. thing. wrong.)

    I don't think pizza gets better than Stop 50. I've probably said this before, but every time I'm back there I'm more impressed. A gorgonzola, walnut, local sausage, garden oregano - just a pinch or slice of each ingredient on each wedge of perfect charred bread-candy, melting on the palate - is a transcendent thing. Not because it necessarily has to be thin or homegrown or fussy, but because it takes deliciousness to an artistically balanced level. It pleases every sense for a foodie and a kiddo. There are about five interesting things that happen just to your teeth as you bite through it.

    I could be just as potentially happy with something from Wells Brothers or Art of Pizza or Freddy's in Cicero or VPN in the Boot, but somehow Stop 50 has found the extra magic. This is before getting into what wood-fired broccoli with charred lemon and garlic taste like in late March, or the quality of the grated parmigiano on the appetizer plate snowing in the fiery sausage-stuffed peppers, or what an order of the s'mores being run through the restaurant does to the face of every kid or kid at heart in the house. This is truly a special place in a region of special places, and a pinnacle pie in a blessed greater Chicagoland of diversely excellent pizza.
  • Post #137 - August 8th, 2020, 8:58 am
    Post #137 - August 8th, 2020, 8:58 am Post #137 - August 8th, 2020, 8:58 am
    Still slinging them out quite nicely with perfect crusts. They were a little slow (they said they got slammed with some big carry out orders), but we were in no rush on a beautiful evening. Lots of outdoor tables.

    The firecracker appetizer (spicy tomato sauce with goat cheese, skinny slices of pizza crust) is wonderful. The wild mushroom pizza was very tasty but could have used a little something more (red onion? More herbs?). Biga doughnut is more pizza crust with Nutella and powdered sugar, a perfect topper.
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang

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