Delivery dilemma

Barry Piser
ANNE RAUP / Anchorage Daily News

The snow and the temperature are falling fast and so is your motivation.

To move. To drive. To cook.

The cupboard and fridge aren't stocked to your liking, so you're in a true rock-and-hard-place situation.

What to do? Pull on all your winter gear, clear the car off and warm it up? Nah.

In a "cabin fever" state, you come to the only logical solution. Delivery!

But whom to call?

As a bachelor/glutton/ex-server/humble restaurant critic, I eat out a lot but rarely pick up the phone to order in, so I consulted friends, Facebook and Urbanspoon to research the top options to have your dinner delivered to your door.

I decided to order five meals over the course of a week and rate each on the merits of the service: price, delivery minimum/charge, delivery time and, or course, the food itself.

What follows is my week of eating out of Styrofoam ...

Winky's Wings

Phone: 279-4647

Location: 9191 Old Seward Highway


Urbanspoon: 81% (240 votes)

Minimum: Depends on location

Charge: $2

Order: 50-piece original wings ($34.95)

Time quoted: 1 hour, 30 min.

On time: Yes (10 min. early)

Packaging and extras: A

Breakdown: This was a Sunday football feast. Straight Out of Philly doesn't open until 3 p.m. on Sundays, so the boys and I opted for Winky's on a whim. The wings arrived warm but not hot and a bit on the dry side. We tackled the spicy and flavorful flats and drummettes like an old-school NFL defense, bones tossed aside like a quarterback with poor protection.

Order again: Maybe

Serrano's Mexican Grill

Phone: 744-1555

Location: 640 W. 36th Ave.

Urbanspoon: 91% (342 votes)

Minimum: $20

Order: Serrano's burrito ($8.25), fajita burrito ($8.95), churros ($3.25) and a horchata ($2.45)

Time quoted: 1 hour

On time: Yes

Packaging and extras: A+

Breakdown: The delivery minimum had me scrambling until my roommate happened to come home hungry for lunch, and his burrito pushed us over $20. Both burritos, with rice and beans on the side, were ample in size and a perfect mélange of Mexican piquancy when paired with the soothing horchata. The fajita burrito was a bit on the cool side, temperature-wise. The churros were fresh, cinnamon-sweet and gone faster than Speedy Gonzalez.

Order again: Si!

Milano's Pizzeria and Philly Steaks

Phone: 569-6000

Location: 1207 W. 36th Ave.

Urbanspoon: 91% (262 votes)

Minimum: $10

Order: "Philadelphia" and "Philly Cheesesteak" (all 10 varieties of Phillys $9.95)

Time quoted: 40 min.

On time: Yes (10 min. early)

Packaging and extras: B

Breakdown: I had heard good things about Milano's cheesesteaks, so I was excited to try them out. Roommate No. 2 was around and asked to get in on the action. The sandwiches showed up piping hot, accompanied by unremarkable crinkle cut fries. Both of us were satisfied with the flavors. The roomie was happy they nailed his "no onions" demand, and I was equally pleased to see mozzarella subbed for Swiss. We were full but we might go "double meat" for $2 more on our next order.

Order again: Likely

Fiori D'Italia

Phone: 243-9990

Location: 2502 McCrae Road


Urbanspoon: 86% (383 votes)

Minimum: $15

Order: Pollo alla fettuccini ($18.95) with side salad and garlic bread.

Time quoted: 1 hour

On time: Yes (20 min. early)

Packaging and extras: B

Breakdown: I didn't know they delivered until a Facebook friend suggested it. The sizable portion of pasta (enough for two people) was inundated with a cloying cream sauce and plenty of tender chicken chunks; it was helped by a hefty dose of pepper. It was fittingly accompanied by nearly half a baguette of not-so-garlicky garlic bread and a sad side salad of iceberg lettuce, one tomato slice and two cucumber slices.

Order again: Possibly

Thai Town

Phone: 644-4433

Location: 3311 Spenard Road


Urbanspoon: 84% (172 votes)

Minimum: $30

Charge: $5

Order: Stir-fry basil chicken ($12), Thai fresh rolls ($8), fry spring rolls ($8), side of rice ($1) and a soda ($1.50).

Time quoted: 1 hour

On time: Yes (10 min. early)

Packaging and extras: B

Breakdown: I was at work and failed a few attempts at other places, so I try Thai Town and reach a friendly female voice. During the call, I find out the minimum and begrudgingly suck it up and order some extra food. Next, I hear "$5 delivery charge," but I'm too busy and tired to abort. I tell her my location. "Oh no, we don't deliver that far away." But she can sense the defeat in my voice and tells me she'll make an exception. She delivers it early and with a smile.

The basil chicken was a bit salty but that was nothing the desk-top Sriracha and the side of rice couldn't fix. The fry rolls, hot and crispy, were delicious but not recommended if you want to keep a clean keyboard. The fresh rolls kept until the next day and made a perfect after-bar snack.

Order again: Probably not

More options

Taco/Burrito King

Phone: 771-6000

Location: Multiple


Urbanspoon: 86% (755 votes combined)

Minimum: $18

Charge: $2

Straight Out of Philly

Phone: 569-1515

Location: 210 E. Fireweed Lane


Urbanspoon: 86% (120 votes)

Minimum: $12 (Midtown) or $20

Charge: $2

Wings 'n Things

Phone: 277-9464

Location: 701 W. Spenard Ave. Unit A-7

Urbanspoon: 71% (641 votes)

Minimum: $15

Charge: $3-$5

Sparta Pizza

Phone: 561-6000

Location: 1005 E. Dimond Blvd. No. 4

Urbanspoon: 90% (167 votes)

Minimum: $10

Sweet Pink Pepper

Phone: 276-0709

Location: 1553 S. Bragaw St.

Urbanspoon: 82% (219 votes)

Minimum: $20

Peppercini's Deli House

Phone: 279-3354

Location: 3901 Old Seward Highway Suite. 18 (order online)

Urbanspoon: 81% (154 votes)

Minimum: $25 (Midtown) or $50

Monster Pizza

Phone: 561-9999

Location: 343 Benson Blvd.

Urbanspoon: 86% (116 votes)

Minimum: $15

Lily's Family Restaurant

Phone: 561-3805

Location: 1440 E. Tudor Road

Urbanspoon: 44% (50 votes)

Minimum: $15

Northern China

Phone: 337-1912

Location: 353 Muldoon Road

Urbanspoon: 80% (61 votes)

Minimum: $20

China Garden

Phone: 272-2626

Location: Multiple

Urbanspoon: 81% (240 votes)

Minimum: $17

Anchorage Daily News