What's New On The Sticky Beak Blog

South Normanton, Derbyshire
01773 811555
View The Full Profile
A Recent Dining In Review

Sunday Lunch At The Tickled Trout In Barlow
This Review | All Reviews

Sticky Beaks' Hot Wings Award

Like Us On Facebook

Follow Us On Twitter

Dinner at Pizza Express, South Normanton

Published On Friday 19 Jun 2015 by Sticky Beak
See Recent Dining Out Reviews | See All Recent Reviews

As you know dear reader, my little flock are rather fond of Pizza, and have been to several places around our glorious county to sample them. However, we haven’t reviewed a chain yet so when Pizza Express opened a restaurant at the Designer Outlet and invited us to go along and try it we flew over pretty smartish.

The premises themselves are a bit like Dr Who’s Tardis, deceptively spacious inside compared to the exterior view. The decor is very neutral with wood and brick and metal bars suspending the lighting, yet it manages to be inviting despite its open plan layout. We were greeted with a cheery smile and taken to our booth table and introduced to our server for the evening, Mollie. Menus were placed before us and our drinks order taken, and we settled back to take in the atmosphere.

It was very busy for a midweek evening, even considering it being located in a shopping area. However, the background music was at a pleasing level so that the hum of conversation could be detected without it intruding on your own conversation. Another thing I liked was the fact that you couldn’t distinguish neighbouring table’s conversations and you didn’t need to raise your own voice to be heard yourself.

For starters my Chick had the Pizza Express Dough Balls, whilst the Man and I shared the Classic Italian Antipasto. Typically, the dough balls didn’t even touch the side of Chickadees Beak (her excuse was that shopping is hungry work!), so she ended up pilfering a few bits off our plate too!

The Antipasti was a glorious platter of Cured meats and Sausage, Olives, Roast tomatoes, Marinated Aubergine, Mozzarella, Peppadew peppers and dough baked with Gran Milano cheese and Black Pepper. There was also Pea and Mint Pesto and Pestorissa to dip into. Our taste buds had gone into overdrive with such variety; it really was what I would consider to be a proper Antipasti selection with its many constituents. We had it for the two of us, but in truth it would easily feed 3 or 4 people as an intro and considering it was priced at under £13 is excellent value.

I decided to have the La Regina Pizza for my main. The combination of Smoked Ham Hock, Chestnut Mushroom, Mozzarella, Garlic Oil and Black Pepper on a Bechamel base then garnished with Fresh Parsley and Truffle oil just appealed to me. The Ham Hock was out of this world, really tasty meat that was just bliss on the thin base with the sauce and I was extremely happy with my choice. My Chick had the Carbonara Pizza with its classic Pancetta, Mozzarella, Garlic Oil and Gran Milano cheese combo on a Bechamel sauce base and a free range egg in its centre and garnished with fresh Parsley. She said it was a really nicely made Pizza, and soon made light work of it ,not leaving a single crumb behind. 

Now as you know, the Boy likes a bit of spice in his life so he opted for the American Hottest pizza. This little beauty had Pepperoni, Hot Green and Roquito Peppers, Fresh red Chilli, Spicy ‘Nduja sausage, Tomato and Mozzarella on it with fresh Parsley and Chilli Oil to finish it. It had been billed as a bit of a fiery monster, and so it proved to be. It lulled the Boy into a false sense of security though, as it takes a little while for the true spiciness to be appreciated by the taste buds; but when the action starts....... suffice to say that he had to have a little rest before the final slice was eaten.

All the pizzas had a generous amount of toppings on them and they weren’t drowned by ridiculous amount s of sauce either, so they didn’t have any sogginess to them. The bases were lovely and thin and crispy just as they should be.

After a brief interlude we had a look at the dessert menu and it will come as no surprise that we did indulge in a sweet treat , purely for completeness of the review you understand (not through our gluttony at all J). Our Chick had her favourite, Chocolate Fudge Cake, and had it with pouring cream, I had the Vanilla Cheesecake and had Mascarpone with it, and His Nibs had Eton Mess Cheesecake with Ice Cream.

Again, all three desserts were superb and a really pleasing portion size too. To round things off we ordered 2 Lattes and a Hot Chocolate, which looked the most chocolatey Hot Chocolate I’ve ever seen. Chickadee said it was amazing, really rich and yummy.

Throughout the evening Mollie did a check-back on each course to make sure we were enjoying our meal, and was really polite and super-attentive. In fact, I have to say that every single member of staff was exemplary in their attentiveness to each of their allocated tables and this was reflected in the smiles and laughter coming from all quarters of the restaurant.

The three gents making the pizzas never stopped all evening but were such a well run team that they just seemed to dance around each other in their confined work space as if they knew what each member needed without being asked. It was a joy to behold such seamless teamwork between all staff; you don’t often see such a high level being maintained on such a busy service period. All the tables were kept spotlessly clean throughout the evening as well, and any debris on the floor cleared away promptly.

If you haven’t been here before, or indeed if you haven’t eaten a Pizza Express Pizza before, then I highly recommend you pay these guys a visit. The added bonus is that until the end of June 2015 you can go to The Sticky Beak website and print off a voucher that gives you 30% discount there J

All that remains to be said is our familiar victory cry of “Hot Wings” ahoy to team Pizza Express -  with a special mention for our server Mollie who was a complete superstar, and also to one of the pizzaiolos Shane who I had the pleasure of working with a few years ago (I didn’t know he worked at Pizza Express until I saw him, so it was a lovely surprise to see him again).

Some form of incentive was provided to visit this venue read more

Read Some Of Our Recent Reviews

Out For Dinner At The Spirit Vaults In Melbourne
Out For Dinner At The Spirit Vaults In Melbourne The town of Melbourne, in South Derbyshire, is a really picturesque place, and it's also where you'll find The Spirit Vaults. Originally built in the 1700's, the building began selling alcohol, named as Read The Article

Out For Dinner To Celebrate Olive Restaurant's 8th Birthday
Out For Dinner To Celebrate Olive Restaurant's 8th Birthday Fashionably late was taken to a WHOLE new level by this flock! We were supposed to be bringing in the new year with a family meal at Olive Moroccan restaurant in Belper Read The Article

Dinner At The Recently Opened Lagan Indian Tapas In Nottingham
Dinner At The Recently Opened Lagan Indian Tapas In Nottingham The restaurant formerly known as Paris closed at the back end of 2023, but new owners took over in November and opened as Lagan, an Indian Tapas dining offering. The Man Read The Article

Sunday Lunch At The Galleon Steakhouse In Chesterfield
Sunday Lunch At The Galleon Steakhouse In Chesterfield What with one thing and another, His Nibs and I found ourselves booking a table for two for Sunday Lunch - a very rare occurrence! We've visited the Galleon Steakhouse Read The Article

Lunch At The Oakfield Farm Shop Restaurant In Stanley Common
Lunch At The Oakfield Farm Shop Restaurant In Stanley Common The early bird gets the worm they say, don't they? Well, this bird was getting the early Christmas worm by getting The Man to take her out for lunch on a cheeky days Read The Article

Sunday Lunch At The Tickled Trout In Barlow
Sunday Lunch At The Tickled Trout In Barlow Another Sunday, another jaunt out for a Flock roast lunch! Mind you, it was somewhere fab to see out 2023: The Tickled Trout (TT) in Barlow. The Man Bird and I had recently been here Read The Article

Breakfast At The Edensor Tea Cottage, Edensor
Breakfast At The Edensor Tea Cottage, Edensor The last day of our short break with friends had arrived and we were all loathe to say farewell. In order to eke out those last few glorious hours together, we'd booked a table for a late, lazy Read The Article

A Return Visit To The Shalimar Indian Restaurant In Darley Dale
A Return Visit To The Shalimar Indian Restaurant In Darley Dale After such a rip-roaringly successful visit to Shalimar last year with friends, we decided to do it again as we all convened at Landal Darwin Forest for our get-together. Read The Article

Back At The Fishpond In Matlock Bath For Their Sunday Carvery
Back At The Fishpond In Matlock Bath For Their Sunday Carvery I don't know about you, but when I'm away for a short break, the last thing I want to do is cook - especially on Sunday! Our flock was enjoying a long weekend at Landal Darwin Read The Article

A Pre-Theatre Dinner At Son Of Steak, Nottingham
A Pre-Theatre Dinner At Son Of Steak, Nottingham His Nibs and I were off out out to the theatre in Nottingham recently, and decided to make a night of it by going for pre-show dinner - get us being all grown-up!! Now Read The Article

Read More

This Website Is Using Cookies
Read Our Cookie Policy
I Understand