A note: I am reviewing Courtside as a food place, not as a nightspot. Its bar reputation is a separate issue entirely.
Most students at Ohio University know Courtside Pizza mainly as a bar. Indeed, most of the shop is dominated by two large bar counters, and the sizable indoor area and outdoor patio are routinely packed on weekends with bar goers. The rear of Courtside, however, also features a pizza kitchen, which has gathered something of a following of its own. Courtside has a walk-up pizza counter, which is best known for Wednesday: “slice night.” At 5 pm hundreds of college kids line up to grab the cheapest meal that will probably ever find.
Basically, slice night is a deal where Courtside sells two slices of stripped-down pizza at incredible prices. Cheese pizza is only a dollar, and pepperoni adds a quarter. The line is routinely out the door on this night as college kids come looking for a cheap meal. If you’re anything but a college kid, though, steer absolutely clear. The long wait in line is not worth it whatsoever unless you’re pinching pennies. Slice night’s pizza is floppy thin crusted cardboard covered in cheese and grease. It gives me a stomach ache unless I take a napkin to it before ingesting. Astoundingly, droves of students keep coming back every Wednesday. When you’re strapped for cash, cheap actually has a flavor, and that flavor is GOOD.
The regular pizza options aren’t so bad. There’s a wider assortment of toppings but there is no less grease, and it’s nothing special. The pizza options outside of slice night are far less popular and the walk-up traffic indicates it’s more convenience than choice for students living nearby. However, Courtside seems to have built a business model on curing the hangover hurt; the greasy pizza will settle a stomach aching from alcohol perfectly. I suspect this is on purpose, so the bar becomes a go-to place for partying as well as the next day.
Courtside has a successful business model with its bar; it does not need to perfect its pizza recipes. That doesn’t stop them from adding extra nickels and dimes to the food here and there. Courtside is college food, and if you are a college kid it’s hard not to like the place. The environment and service are great and cater very much to a younger taste. If you’re anyone else, though, think fancier. You just won’t find anything about this bar all that impressive.
- “Slice night” runs Wednesdays starting at 5 pm. Two slices of bare-bones cheese pizza sell for $1.00. Add pepperonis to them for another quarter. It’s Courtside’s biggest food attraction.
- Greasy as it is, Courtside’s other pizzas will settle a stomach reeling from a night of heavy drinking. That seems to be the very strategy that keeps people coming back.
- The popularity of the bar and abundance of televisions make Courtside a great place to go with friends to watch a game.