Good to go is a column where our food writers explore Dallas' restaurant scene through takeout orders, delivery boxes and reheated leftovers.
Old Hag’s Pizza & Pasta in Oak Cliff wants to be clear about something. And you’ll absolutely be clear about it by the time you sign your receipt. For certain. Just wait.
After calling in an order recently, I knew I wanted the North OC pizza, because I like to eat like the locals. But then I asked the person on the other end of the line, "What's your favorite pasta dish?"
He paused, but only because he was thrown off by the question, not because he didn’t have a favorite.
“The fettuccine formaggio,” he said with a bit of romance laced through his words.
Naturally, I ordered one to go. I’ve never had a bad experience leaving my order to those who know the menu and kitchen best. Yes, even at Sonic.
I paid for my order over the phone and was told they’d have it ready in about 25 minutes, enough time to swing by a local brewery for a couple of beers to go.
Old Hag’s is affectionately named after the owner’s mom. The spot is known for being open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Co-owner Michael Lindsey has set the delivery zone far and wide (such as to Grand Prairie), perhaps to capitalize on slightly impaired late-night decision-making. He charges accordingly for the drive because when you're the only pizza game open at 5 a.m., people pay.
I asked him through Facebook Messenger if post-midnight delivery was still buzzing as much as it was when they first introduced it last year.
My phone dinged at 2:23 a.m.
"Yes! It's just funny how crazy the orders fly in between midnight and five in the morning," Lindsey replied.
Back to the staff favorite fettuccine formaggio. The amount of cheese in this dish is one fettuccine noodle short of scandalous. A thick layer of mozzarella, feta, provolone and romano are baked atop pasta that is swimming in alfredo sauce. And on top of all that? Fat meatballs. Oof.
A dish this substantial is like a sporty older brother to any other item on the menu; others simply don't stand a chance.
So while the pizza is really good, it’s going to need to move out and establish its own identity before anyone will give it the attention it deserves. (Except for the late-night delivery audience.) With that said, the North OC comes with pepperoni, bacon, a bit of onions, a generous amount of fresh basil and mozzarella. The crust is thin and crispy, just a wee bit chewy.
Together the pizza and pasta fed the better part of four people. Plus some left over.
Now here’s the thing: If you call in an order, you will have to sit through a somewhat long message. Then when you walk up to pick up your order, you’ll notice a sign taped to the window with the same message, highlighted in yellow.
The message? Old Hag's Pizza now has an automatic 18% service fee added to every order. They want to make sure customers are aware of the charge.
“The service fee has allowed us to not only not lay people off with the pandemic, but make sure we are able to pay all employees, front and back of the house, a really competitive wage and offer health benefits, while also absorbing the really high food and supply price increases happening over last few months, all without sacrificing our employees' payroll,” Lindsey wrote us. “We pay our team members well, so you do not have to tip.”
Lindsey is also working on an expansion; he's hired the staff from Taco Hut, which closed after a substantial drop in business since March. He had a grill top installed last week, and the new menu with Mexican food and breakfast tacos will be introduced soon.
Old Hag's Pizza and Pasta, 1315 W. Davis St. (North Oak Cliff). Open 24 hours a day. 214-941-8080.
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