- 2613 Ingersoll Ave., Des Moines, IA, 50312
- Overall User Rating:
- (29 ratings)
- 11 a.m.-3 a.m.
October 30, 2008
Need a quick cure for the epidemic of forced cheerfulness and scripted delivery that can make eating at some restaurants so annoying? Well, the antidote is dispensed right here, at Big Tomato Pizza Co.
The tacky neon sign that spells out, "Lousy Service"? That sign is not a joke. This venue operates recklessly, but successfully, with what is likely the worst service in our fair city. It is so bad that "service" is not even the right word for it. "Abuse" is a more apt descriptor.
Big Tomato revels in being the antithesis of the slick suburban scene. The servers, if one must call them that, have more holes in their bodies than a golf course. Their skin is a canvas for the tattoo trade, their clothing looks harvested from the bottom of the hamper, and they make no secret that they couldn't care less about you and your needs.
The place, not much larger than its oven, is incinerator hot. A deep whiff of its blast-furnace air may detect an herb that doesn't go in pizza. "Please" and "thank you" are absent from the vocabulary and the place is devastatingly devoid of speed and efficiency. Deliveries may take an hour and a half. Or they may not come at all.
Big Tomato operates in that sweet spot in which "bad" becomes "funny," blatant obliviousness morphs to entertainment and wretched incompetence creates comedy.
Picking up a pie is like walking into Quentin Tarantino's imagination. But it's one of Des Moines' greatest treasures, home to some of the best pizza in the Midwest, and it's the only place I know where one can order a pie topped with Spam, Doritos or chili dogs. Ya gotta love this place.