Me -n – Ed’s Pizza: Fresno Loves To Hate It But Totally Would Miss It If It Was Gone

ontap

Wanna get a room fired up? Tell everyone “Me-N-Ed’s Pizza is the best pizza in Fresno!” Now let the pineapple bits and canned mushrooms fly!

To be straight with you, I don’t think Me-N-Ed’s is the best pizza in town. That would be Mike’s (West & Shields). Or maybe Mama Mia’s. Popolo’s gets a vote too. But Me-N-Ed’s is still in the mix for me.

I might go as so far as to say I love Me-N-Ed’s. And yes, I get the CANNED mushrooms!

But not everybody feels the same way about our local pizza empire. Some people hate the hell out of it. Think it’s terrible. Never miss an opportunity to bash it. Are disappointed by it.

Yet others can’t get enough. Sometimes, native Fresnans come home for the Holidays or whatever and make a point to have a Me-N-Ed’s pizza before they leave town. They miss it.

I understand missing Me-N-Ed’s. There was a time when I lived in Los Angeles. Lakewood, to be exact. One day, to my surprise and delight, I stumbled upon a Me-N-Ed’s. Whaaaaaa? All the way down in Lakewood? It was like having a Fresno embassy in my new foreign town.

Why Do Fresnans Hate On It So Much?

Is it because you have to pay for ranch? Ranch has become the most valuable commodity in Fresno, thanks to Me-N-Ed’s. It’s true. Even more valuable than Bobby Salazar salsa.

ranch

Do people hate the crust bubbles? You know those bubbles. No other kind of pizza has crust bubbles like Me-N-Ed’s.

Maybe it’s because this “Me” character is so secretive? We know this Ed guy – well, at least we have a name. But who is “Me”? What does he stand for? What are his thoughts on the Fulton Mall? Will he ride the BRT? Could he have stopped rust from getting into NE Fresno water?

WE DON’T KNOW BECAUSE HE ONLY REFERS TO HIMSELF AS “ME”! Show yourself, Me, if that is your real name. Really though, have you seen the glare he sends out? Something is going on there:

  

We Must Accept This Pizza

Like it or not, Me-N-Ed’s is the pizza of Fresno. Of the Valley. It is a unique style. Dare I say “Central Valley style” pizza. It is like us; filled with crust bubbles, canned products and served with a condiment you have to pay for.

Did that make any sense? No? Well, fuck it. It’s just pizza. Eat it. Love it or hate it. Me-N-Ed’s is our cross to bear. Or cross to eat with a couple sides of ranch.

Follow Up: A Visit To The New Popolo’s Pizza

New Popolo's Inside

Of course we waited for a table. It’s new and this is Fresno, dammit! Even if it’s an old-new place, we are packing it. The re-birthed place that we (and a lot of Fresnans) waited for is Popolo’s Pizza.

Hey, I know I know, I just reviewed another old-new pizza and beer place in Fresno, but we cried when the old Pops closed so I had to follow up and bring everything full pizza circle.

The Walk In

They still have the box car. There are booths! They seem to have transferred some of the wood paneling from the old place. The paneling looks a bit out-of-place if you had never been in the old one, but it felt good seeing as a veteran of the Blackstone one.

Also like that they kept the arcade going and the food hasn’t changed nor the prices. Welllll, the salad bar is different but more on that in a second.

This Is The New Stuff

Popolo's Pizza Bar

A bar! There’s a bar! You can see the taps now (they were hidden at the old place). Plus more beer! There is also much more seating! And an outside patio! I have not been on the patio yet but it looks cool and I hear it is dog friendly.

Salad Bar Disappointment

Popolo's new salad bar

It just does not measure up to the old one, does it? Nope. Sad little trays instead of pretty bowls amongst ice. BUT WAIT! A quote from Popolo’s themselves (on The Fresnan’s Instagram page) about the salad bar:

“The salad bar is ‘under construction’ still at the moment. Keep an eye out for the improvement one it. It won’t disappoint.”

YES! Somebody listens to bloggers in this town.

Let The Mourning Begin

I was surprised to feel something after going to the new Pops. I felt a sense of loss. The closing of the old place finally hit me.  It’s never coming back. I will never set foot in there again.

No matter how nice and cool they make the new one. No matter how many nods to the original and no matter how smart a move it was (and I can’t blame them a bit for it), I miss the old place and always will.

Thank you Popolo’s for keeping the place alive, even in another form. And thank you old Popolo’s for giving me all the tube TV, icy salads, beer, big booths and pizza feels for all those years.

This Popolo’s Pizza problem needs to get sorted out, Fresno

popolo's pizza front

UPDATE: Consider this sorted out; statement from Popolo’s:

We’re excited to announce, that Popolo’s Pizza & More! will be relocating to 7835 N. Palm Ave. #106, off of Palm & Nees in Fresno!

As saddened as we are leaving our Blackstone & Herndon location that we have occupied for almost 31 years, we feel that the matters we’ve been faced with these last couple of months, has forced us as a family to make this decision.

Our new location will have a large banquet room, patio, arcade and a beer & wine bar. With relocating to Park Place, we will be able to keep our existing delivery area & expand it, and also still be close to our previous location where our customers who live or/and work close to the area or travel from across town can find us a short drive up the street.

We want to say “THANK YOU!” to all of our amazing family, friends and customers for all of your support & patience during this difficult time. We will keep everyone updated as much as possible for all of the new & exciting things to come!

Thank you,
The Greene Family!
Popolo’s Pizza & More!
New location coming June 2016!!!!!!!!!!

[ORIGINAL POST]:
You are not going to take this lying down in your soft, sinking booth, are you, Fresnans? Popolo’s Pizza┬áis temporarily closed. My breadstick craving gizzard is weeping. No salad bar. No pizza. No tube televisions to watch. No booth dividers to remove. Checking the taps in the waiting area is pointless. POINTLESS! *drops to knees* WHY, GOD, WHY!?!

It apparently has something to do with the building’s foundation. The floor of Popolo’s currently looks like this:

Popolo's Pizza floor

Did you see that!? The gap between the floor and earth? What is there like a hidden creek running beneath Pop’s? There is not supposed to be a crawl space in that building. So yeah, I can see why it might not be wise to be open with that lurking underneath.

Luckily they don’t own the building so it’s not on them to fix it. But they are not making any money right now and I’m am sitting around waiting to give them mine in exchange for a Van Ness Extension (hold the peppers).

This. This is serious guys. Oh these sad lonely booths:

empty popolo's pizza booth

I would look damn good sitting in one of them. Proudly making a plate of potato skins disappear and ordering another Tioga Sequoia XPA #DrinkLocalBro.

So what’s the update on the place? Let’s get this figured out, dammit! Well I got this from Popolo’s Pizza themselves:
Continue reading “This Popolo’s Pizza problem needs to get sorted out, Fresno”