When I was in Jr. High (Eastmoor & Johnson Park) THE place to go after a dance or football game was Rubino's. I moved from Columbus to St. Louis in 1964, but returned for the first time after 42 years to attend the 40 year reunion of the class I would have graduated with had I remained in Ohio. It was great to see friends after all that time, but I have to admit that dinner at Rubino's was the highlight of the trip. I was sure my memories of the atmosphere and especially the pizza had been blown out of proportion after all that time of dreaming about them, but when I walked through the door it was like stepping into the early 60's. EVERYTHING was the same. Well, okay, they did have an updated Coke machine. The one I remember was a big chest and when you lifted the lid all the different brands of soda (pop) were there for the taking. However many Cokes you drank was determined by the honor system so I'm sure they lost money on it. And the boothes had been re-upholstered, but other than that it was EXACTLY as I remembered. Even the smell was the same. Imagine my anticipation when my large pepperoni pizza was set before me as I sat in the exact same booth I had eaten my last Rubino's pizza in over 40 years ago. I closed my eyes and savored the aroma. With eyes still closed I took my first bite. Apparently I hadn't learned anything in the ensuing 40 years because I immediately burned the roof of my mouth just like I always did back then. My memories had not exagerated a thing. The taste was exactly the same as I remembered it. I found myself almost crying over a pizza. I know how silly it sounds for a man who is almost 60 years old to get that emotional over a pizza, but Rubino's is THAT good. In my 60 years I have lived all over the country and traveled to foreign lands, but I have NEVER eaten better pizza than I've had at that tiny little shop that is still stuck in time. Rubino's was, is, and always will be the BEST pizza in the world.
Pros: Inexpensive, comfortable family atmosphere, what a pizza parlor used to be like (and still should)
Cons: Most young people today think only Pizza Hut and Domino's make real pizza and because of that they might not like Rubino's. That's their loss...