According to the folks at NationalDayCalendar.com, it is National Pizza Day. Some quick stats:

  • 17% of all U.S. restaurants are pizza places.
  • Pepperoni is the most popular pizza. 36% of all pies ordered are Pepperoni.
  • More than 3 billion pizzas are sold annually in the U.S.
  • On average, Americans consume 23 pounds of pizza per person each year.

The Quad Cities can claim to be the site of the origin of two pizza staples.

The first is the unique Quad Cities-style pizza created at Harris Pizza on 14th Avenue in Rock Island. QC-style is distinguished by its malt-flavored crust, pork sausage and scissor-strip cut (but its a pie! cut it like a pie!)  Quad Cities-style pizza is available in several U.S. cities now as Quad Citians have moved around the country, and taken the recipe with them.

Taco pizza was also invented in the Quad Cities. 'Happy Joe' Whitty first crumbled taco shells, added tomatoes, lettuce, refried beans and lightly spiced taco meat to a pizza in 1974. Now it's a common national favorite.

Celebrate National Pizza Day by savoring one, or both Quad Cities originals, or try one of these places ranked as best for Quad Cities-style pizza.

- Craig