Keene: Athens Pizza & Family Restaurant

The skinny: It seems as though when you ask people from Keene or those who went to Keene State College about pizza, one name comes up: Athens. Sometimes, it’s the only name. One little boy, walking in with his family after a soccer game, said to his family, “When you said we were having pizza, I knew we were coming here!”

Athens Pizza & Family Restaurant KeeneAthens, as you may have guessed by now, does Greek pizza — as well as plenty of other Greek dishes. Its pizza offerings are pretty standard, and it doesn’t offer any of those Hawaiian/barbecue/carnivore’s delight pies the other places do.

You can get pizzas in three sizes: small, large and family size, starting at $7,45, $10.95 and $14, respectively. (All prices include tax.) Adding a topping brings the prices up to $8.20/$12.70/$15.50, and toppings are standard — no specialty pies here.

Review: At Athens, we went straight for the topping we are pretty sure we’ve never seen anywhere else: kielbasa ($12.70 on a large). Besides, it totally makes sense to order the Polish topping at the Greek restaurant, right?

Athens has a great Greek pizza. The crust is a winner. It’s really light and not dry at all. While the bottom crust can get really greasy, the end crust doesn’t, which leads to much cleaner eating.

The top of the pizza is pretty greasy, too, and that probably wasn’t helped by choosing kielbasa as a topping. We actually needed to double up on our paper plates because of the grease. We realize pizza is a greasy food, and the amount it had wasn’t enough to turn us off from it, though it wouldn’t surprise us to see other diners wipe it off a little.

The cheese was ooey-gooey, the kind where you try to bring the slice onto your plate, but half the cheese gets left with the rest of the pizza. It’s really a strategic move to get the entire slice where you want it.

The sauce is sweet and very thin. The sweetness got a little too close to clashing with the flavor of the kielbasa, but it worked. On plain pizzas we’ve ordered from here in the past, it was much better.

This really wasn’t one of the better cold pizzas Andrew has tried. Like a trouper, though, he went through with it. A few hours in the fridge removed all the appeal of the pizza, as the kielbasa grease had congealed in the little curled-up pieces and formed a layer on top of the cheese. While the crust remained pretty good, the rest tasted dry and pretty flavorless.

Rating: Deidre: 3.5 / Andrew: 3.5 = 7/10 slices

Athens Pizza & Family Restaurant
133 Main St., Keene

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