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Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013

Screamin’ Sicilian Pizza

Making noise in the frozen food aisle

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In recent years we have seen more options and higher quality in the food we can buy in stores. You may have to pay a little more, but often the improved quality will be worth it. About a year ago, a new brand of frozen pizza was introduced that went above and beyond what was expected: Screamin’ Sicilian. The result hit store freezers in August. Mike Pytlinski, director of marketing for Screamin’ Sicilian, says, “It’s been flying off the shelves ever since.”

When you see a Screamin’ Sicilian pizza you can tell right away what sets it apart from other frozen pizzas. The packaging is creative, featuring a giant moustache over a mouth-shaped “window” that allows you to actually see what the toppings look like. Pytlinski calls it a “craft pizza that is overtopped with premium ingredients.”

“Overtopped” is right. The five varieties that have been rolled out are loaded with cheese, meat and veggies that look good even when frozen. “The majority of the ingredients are sourced from within 200 miles of our facility,” says Pytlinski. “We use real Wisconsin cheese, locally made sausage and pepperoni, and real garlic—not garlic powder. The tomatoes for the sauce aren’t grown here because the season is short, but we use real tomatoes—not tomato paste.”

The quality of the toppings is noticeable in the eating of the pizza too. The Screamin’ Sicilian team sampled more than 40 different types of sausage before choosing their favorite, going with “gargantuan boulders” which stay juicy when cooked. The pepperoni is rough chopped so it can cover more of the pizza. Huge pieces of mozzarella balls make the cheese pizza extra special. Veggies on the supreme pizza have great texture and color. Pytlinski notes, “We wanted to make sure we were giving people not only the best ingredients, but giving them lots of them too.”

In line with the fresh approach in food quality and packaging, the marketing team has created a “Pizza Timer Game” available for free from the Apple app store. “We are trying to appeal to pizza lovers who want to have fun,” says Pytlinski. The game looks like the mouth from the Screamin’ Sicilian packaging. You have to yell at it to open and close its mouth while food and non-food items fly at it. The game sass talks the players, generating a fair bit of hilarity. It’s a great way to kill time while you are waiting for your pizza to cook. Plus, Pytlinski adds, “It’s a timer at its core, but it does it in a very unique way and with a healthy degree of attitude.”

The pizzas retail for $8.99 and are available in many local grocery stores in the Milwaukee area.

For more information or to find a store near you, visit screaminsicilian.com.