HOUSTON, TX – Pi Pizza Truck owner Anthony Calleo could scarcely believe what he was reading. Stuck in traffic on Monday night, he pulled out his phone to glance at Facebook. When he saw a Thrillist headline that made him angry: “Prepare Your Munchies for Papa John’s Fritos Chili Pizza.”
“I had to read it twice. I was like, ‘What?! What?!? Motherfucker.'”
Since 2011, every Pi menu has featured the pie topped with chili-cheese Fritos over housemade Grizzly barbecue sauce and a lot of cheese.
The article explains that pizza mega chain Papa John’s has a new item called the “Frito Chili Pizza” that “features a base of chili sauce, along with ground beef, Roma tomatoes, cheddar, mozzarella, onions, and a generous helping of Fritos on top.” Author Adam Lapetina ends with the following tag: “Adam Lapetina is a Food/Drink staff writer for Thrillist, and can’t believe he didn’t think to put chips on top of pizza before.”
While Lapetina may not be much of a creative force when it comes to pizza toppings, any Houston pizza fan knows that Calleo did think of that exact thing. The signature item on his popular food truck is the 420 slice. Since 2011, every Pi menu has featured the pie topped with chili-cheese Fritos over housemade Grizzly barbecue sauce and a lot of cheese.
Calleo admits that he regularly reads menus to find inspiration for pizzas and knows that he can’t trademark a recipe. Still, seeing a national chain serving one of his signature items and getting credit for it as though it’s an original idea upsets him.
Find the entire article at culturemap.com <here>