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Report on the Pizza-Vending Machine in Rome

A CNN correspondent has tried out Mr. Go, the 3-minute pizza-vending machine in Rome. The verdict is that it's a cross between pizza and piadina, not a substitute for a well-made, wood-fired pizza, but certainly not awful. It's made fresh (the crust starts as flour and water). Its great virtue is that it operates 24 hours a day, so if you have the midnight munchies, it will be available. The article notes that this pizza is aligned to Romans' (rather than Neapolitans') taste, having a relatively crispy crust. That is not my preference, but I think this is something I'm going to need to try out on my next trip to Rome.

The machine is at Via Catania 2, about 3/4 mile west of Tiburtina Station and just under 1-1/2 miles northeast of Termini Station. Google says public transit can get you from Termini to the vending machine in about 15 minutes. The area is described as residential and located between a university and a hospital, both providing a lot of potential late-night customers.

https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/rome-pizza-vending-machine-review/index.html

Posted by
5191 posts

Interesting! Will a 24-hour gelato scooping machine be next?

Posted by
5457 posts

We will be there in a week, tried to get the wife to head that way and try one, but she seems cool to the idea.

I probably would get off on the process, it actually mixes and kneads dough from scratch, spreads the sauce, and applies toppings, within view. Fascinating, and yes, probably, can get a better pizza, cheaper, many places, probably still better than the average US pizza.

Posted by
19375 posts

That's one of the things I'm curious about, Paul--how it compares to a US pizza.

Posted by
944 posts

probably still better than the average US pizza.

Well, that is a pretty low bar, Paul. :-)

Posted by
26353 posts

if it makes the crust from scratch, applies the sauce and toppings and cooks it in 3 minutes I would be very sceptical. Pizza dough is yeast based. No time to work the gluten, no time to rise.

Posted by
19375 posts

The article says there's minimal rising. That was apparently thought necessary to prevent slippage of toppings off the pizza and a mess inside the machine (plus a health issue).

Posted by
12 posts

My BIL likes to say that his gas station pizza in Italy was better than any in the US. 😂 Guessing he’d say the same about the vending machine. Wouldn’t go out of our way but if we find ourselves nearby, I’ll definitely try it out.

We fly out tomorrow and with all the obstacles we’ve dealt with the last few weeks, I won’t exhale until we’re over the Atlantic.

Posted by
255 posts

Not being snobbish but I'll take NYC pizza over Rome vending machine pizza. The story says it was meant to provide pizza to late night crowd. So I'm thinking convenience pizza Italy style, which I'll take over convenience pizza American style, but would probably not go out of my way to try it.

Posted by
6160 posts

You critics probably haven't been late-night hungry in a long time. Not everything has to be a gourmet experience 😏.

Posted by
255 posts

Agreed Stan, nothing wrong with convenience pizza after a late night out.

Posted by
5191 posts

It sounds like a novel experience, €6 notwithstanding. I have to give them credit for not including pineapple/Canadian bacon as a topping option, although mushrooms and/or olives would be a nice addition. The goofy pictures on the machine of the guy with a slice hanging out of his mouth are questionable, but maybe that’s his target audience.

If the planned Rome trip 7 weeks from now happens, this may be a thing to add to the agenda. I’ll be able to post a report, if so. Wonder whether the full machine experience is best late at night, rather than during daytime?