Like many families, we eat a lot of pizza in our house. It’s fast, fairly cheap and easily adapted to everyone’s tastes. Usually, we order from pizza places near home. But there is one pizza joint that I think is worth driving to: Jockamo Upper Crust Pizza in Indy’s east-side Irvington neighborhood.
As a family, we go to Jockamo when one of my kids has a basketball game at Our Lady of Lourdes, also located in Irvington. Occasionally my co-workers and I will make the drive to the tasty restaurant for lunch.
You really can’t beat Jockamo for lunch. Where else can you get a hot, tasty, home-made $5 lunch? Diners have three choices for the $5 lunch:
- 1 slice of pizza (pepperoni, cheese, or pizza of the day), tossed salad and drink
- Health Nut Salad (my favorite!), two breadsticks and drink
- Soup, salad and breadsticks
The Health Nut Salad is a lettuce-free salad consisting of small-chopped cucumber, tomatoes, red onion and broccoli, with some pine nuts mixed in. The cruciferous concoction is served with house-made creamy garlic dressing on the side. All of the dressings at Jockamo are house-made, with the exception of the lite ranch and lite French, because, as the menu reveals, “we don’t know how to make anything with fewer calories than God intended.” Every time I order the Health Nut, I think “I should make this at home.” But I never do, so it’s always a treat to order at Jockamo.
Most people go to Jockamo for the pizza. The crust is flecked with seasonings and cooked until just crispy without being cracker-thin. The sauce features some small bits of tomato and a flavor that I can only think to describe as “bright.”
Pizza lovers can choose from specialty pizzas including the Slaughterhouse Five, which is named for acclaimed Indianapolis author Kurt Vonnegut and features pepperoni, ham, sausage, bacon and Italian beef, and the Jockamo Special, a vegetarian pie that is loaded with pesto, artichoke, tomato, 3-cheese blend and balsamic reduction. Or build your own pie. Jockamo is happy to make half-and-half pizzas on 12-inch or 16-inch crust.
This neighborhood favorite is also committed to being a good neighbor — many of its dessert offerings come from local bakeries, which are identified on the menu so you can find that sinfully delicious White Chocolate Bread Pudding again later. Like any good neighborhood eatery, Jockamo also welcomes signs and posters promoting local art shows, theatrical events and music concerts.
Parking for Jockamo Upper Crust Pizza is available along West Washington Street and in two lots behind the building.
In addition to the original Irvington location, Jockamo has a second location in Greenwood, Indiana.