July 12, 2010 by wcobserver
By Susan McCarthy
This weekend’s break in the heat and Ozark Folkways “First Friday” reception was inspiration enough for us to head to Mt. Gaylor for a picnic. I italicized picnic because we headed to Mt. Gaylor with only a tablecloth and some watermelon. But we left West Fork with a plan; we were intent on sampling the carry-out pizza at Sky-Vue Lodge.
I felt the stress of the week melt away as we traveled 12 miles from West Fork along scenic Hwy. The road winds past the turn-off for Winslow and up the hill that tops-out on Mt. Gaylor and certainly is the reason that so many call this road “scenic”.
Glenn and Janice Jorgenson have owned and operated Sky-Vue Lodge, a bed and breakfast since 1994. Ironically, the couple has connections to the Sky-Vue’s long-time owner Colonel Buttolph; Janice’s brother is married to a Buttolph family member. But on Friday and Saturday nights, the couple also cranks out pizza for the south part of Washington County.
We arrived at about 6 p.m. and quickly realized that all of the seasoned pizza orderers had called their order in ahead of time; a good tip for our next visit!
“I don’t go anywhere else to get pizza,” said Carolyn Henson of Winslow who calls her order in for a half supreme and half cheese pizza most Fridays.
“We make ‘em like you like to eat them,” said Glenn as our indecisive group of six tried to decide how many pizzas to order and which ingredients to add. We took Glenn up on his recommendation to try both the thin and regular crust pizzas. Both were crispy, but the regular pizza featured a thicker rolled edge, which personally was my favorite.
In the end, we knew Glenn was serious about his offer to make them anyway we wanted them. We ordered two large pizzas and asked for different toppings on all four halves; supreme, pepperoni, Canadian bacon and pineapple and cheese.
After ordering, we were given a privileged tour of the Sky-Vue kitchen where Glenn’s wife Janice was sliding pizzas out of the oven and into boxes so quickly that we had a hard time photographing her “flick of the wrist”. We also got to meet Rebekah Barnett and Jo Ellen Kelso who work part-time for the Jorgenson’s and were busy applying sauce and ingredients to pizzas.
If you’re like us and didn’t’ order ahead, you can pass the time waiting for your pizza in a couple of pleasant ways. There is a small deck off the back of the dining room where guests usually have their breakfast that provides a stunning Ozark Mountain view. We sat at a table to take in the view and I made a mental note to come back to tour the bed and breakfast. Inside, there are also large comfy couches and chairs where you can wait. Or you can shop. The Jorgenson’s have assembled a collection of crafts; there is also a cooler with drinks and ice cream to complete any picnic ideas.
When our pizzas arrived, we headed across the street to Ozark Folkways and enjoyed our pizzas under large shade trees on the picnic table nearest to Hwy 170. The crowd pleaser was definitely the supreme pizza; it was loaded with eight fresh and flavorful ingredients that hung together with just the right amount of mozzarella cheese. A supreme includes pepperoni, Italian sausage, Canadian Bacon, beef, green peppers, onions, mushrooms and black olives; we had it on the regular crust. The Canadian bacon and pineapple pizza on the thin crust was also a hit; both pizzas had us wishing we’d ordered whole pizzas of each. Don’t get me wrong, the other halves were good, but how can a slice of cheese pizza compete with a supreme?
We had strayed from Glenn’s recommendation to order a medium and large. We weren’t really sure if two large pizzas would feed six, including a bottomless pitted teen, but we had about a half a pizza to take home! A large supreme pizza costs $13.79. Sky-Vue Lodge also offers a Pizza Club punch card; after twelve visits, you earn a 12” supreme pizza, a $10 value.
Pizzas are served Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. every Friday of the year except two, the weekend following Thanksgiving and the weekend closest to Christmas. If you have a group of 12 or more, you can call the Jorgenson’s ahead to make arrangements to dine-in. The Jorgenson’s will also let you join them and their guests for breakfast if you call ahead, but that’s another story!