Remember the old days when grabbing some Counter Service Pizza in Disney World typically resulted in receiving a big pillow of not-super-great crust taking over half of the pie and not allowing for much in the way of toppings? Well, if you reeaaallly want to, you can still get plenty of that in spots like PizzeRizzo in Hollywood Studios.
But guests looking for something different from Counter Service pizza options could — and still can — rely on Wolfgang Puck Express, which serves pizza among lots of other popular menu items. But those were the old days. And now, we have two counter service spots that specialize in pizza: Blaze Pizza and the brand new Pizza Ponte.
What they share in common is location, with both in Disney Springs, not too far from each other at all. And they are both Counter Service joints (you don’t need an Advance Dining Reservation to grab some pizza at either place).
But today we’re going to compare the differences in case you are wondering which spot to choose.
To Customize or Not to Customize?
At the new Pizza Ponte, service is cafeteria-style: you walk down the line to check out all the ready-made pizza options and choose a slice of whichever you prefer.
At Blaze Pizza, on the other hand, service happens in an assembly-line fashion. You get to select exactly the toppings you want on your personal pie with the Build Your Own option from a huge array of choices for your sauce, cheese, veggies, and meats.
Guests following special diets may find this highly customizable pizza preferable, as gluten-free crust and vegan options (like vegan cheese) are always available.
For these reasons — as you can probably guess — the line moves rather quickly at Pizza Ponte, whereas the line at Blaze Pizza is often seen outside the entrance.
Whole Pie or By the Slice
A visit to Blaze will result in receiving your own personal pizza pie. And though “personal size” typically implies “mini,” that’s not the case at Blaze. You could even get away with sharing a pie if your group has lots of things you all want to try in Disney Springs.
At Pizza Ponte, it’s Sicilian pizza served by the slice. So you’re walking away with one slice rather than a whole pie. That said, these slices are pretty darn substantial. I was quite hungry when I entered Pizza Ponte on my first visit, but my huge single slice of Porchetta Pizza definitely did the trick.
This is probably a good spot to do a cost comparison: each slice at Pizza Ponte is a flat $7, no matter which kind you choose. A “Simple Pie” at Blaze is $7.25; however, the more popular Build Your Own Pizza option where you can choose any toppings is nearly $10. But you are getting a little more food with the entire pie, so the cost ends up being almost a wash.
Thick or Thin Crust
It really is all about the crust with any pizza, isn’t it? And while you can choose the High-rise dough (for an additional charge) at Blaze, the spot is better known for its signature thin crust.
It’s thick crust all the way at Pizza Ponte — with the exception being the daily Big Roman option — and that crust is made with flour imported from Italy (the water used for the crust is imported as well).
So, are you a thin or thick crust fan? Because in this case, it really comes down to personal preference.
Springs Specific versus Chain
Now, this may or may not matter to you, but something you might want to consider is if you have access to Blaze Pizza at home. As a growing franchise, Blaze Pizza can now be enjoyed in many areas across the country.
Meanwhile, Pizza Ponte can only be found in Disney Springs. So if you prefer to enjoy food you can only have in Disney World during your vacation, Pizza Ponte is your spot.
If you like having some tastes of home while you travel, if you live near a Blaze, then have at it!
Taste and Quality
Similar to the style of crust, taste is a highly subjective category. So something you’ll obviously want to think about are the flavors that most appeal to you. Of course, both Blaze and Pizza Ponte offer crowd-friendly options like pepperoni and mozzarella cheese. And Blaze offers over 40 different toppings, so you can definitely find unique options such as garlic pesto sauce, gorgonzola cheese, and crumbled meatballs.
But Pizza Ponte serves up slices topped with things you may not have as easy access to in other pizza spots, such as the pancetta you can enjoy on the Porchetta pizza. And — bonus!! — these creations are made under the guidance of Pizza Ponte’s Chef from Italy.
As far as quality goes… honestly, both Blaze Pizza and Pizza Ponte offer pizza that is far above and beyond what we’ve been able to have in Disney World counter service spots over the years, and we enjoyed both additions.
So Who’s the Winner? Blaze Pizza or Pizza Ponte?
That said, Blaze has been lauded by locals and tourists alike for a year now — and the long lines show that it’s still a huge favorite among Disney guests. However, with Pizza Ponte being open just a few days, we’re hearing VERY mixed reviews. So if you want almost a sure-fire winner (based on empirical data), go with Blaze.
We hope this side-by-side comparison helps you pick your pizza in Disney Springs!
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Which Counter Service pizza place in Disney Springs gets your top vote? Please let us know with a comment!