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'They don't make boxes big enough for our pizza': Edmonton restaurants supersize menu items

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Several Edmonton restaurants are going to extremes with their menu items.

Lore Pizza offers what it calls 'the biggest pizza in town' to customers.

"When I bring the pizza down to people, it’s a lot of speechlessness," said employee Reese Simoneau.

The pizza is 24 inches wide, has three-and-a-half pounds of dough, plus the toppings.

"They don’t make boxes big enough for our pizza and it’s for good reason," said Simoneau. "If you tried to put a 24-inch pizza box in most car doors you can’t really do it without tilting so we have our pizzas cut in halves to send out just because of the size of them, makes it more manageable," he added.

Lore Pizza cuts its 24-inch wide pizza in half to fit in takeout boxes. (Galen McDougall/CTV News Edmonton)

He said the most popular 24-inch pizza is pepperoni which costs $48.

"I’ve had it before, it’s probably my favourite pizza in Edmonton," said customer Nathen Van Den Biggelaar. "I highly recommend it."

"I was quite surprised at how big they were," said another customer, Melissa Mcneil. "Like a hugs worth of pizza," she laughed. Mcneil ordered a whole 24-inch pizza for herself.

"I’m a big fan of leftovers so each slice is almost like lunch and dinner on its own, so if I don’t finish it, I have some for a few days," she said.

Giant croissants at Ayco Cafe in Edmonton. (Matt Marshall/CTV News Edmonton)

Ayco Cafe, known as a favourite photo spot for Instagram users, has also upsized a menu item. They offer a giant croissant, an idea that came from a social media post in Europe.

"We always pay attention to everything that goes viral on social media," said Alessandro Pinna, baker and co-owner at Ayco Cafe. "So we noticed that nobody has them in Canada or in Edmonton so we started making really huge croissants."

He said the dough weighs one and a half kilograms and a pound of butter is used.

"For the sweet ones, we use almost a full piping bag of filling. And at the same time, we have more decoration on the top, so we use buttercream at the top," Pinna said.

They also use things like fresh fruit, gold leaf and rose petals to decorate each one.

Pinna said one croissant is designed to feed 10 to 12 people.

"It’s not easy to finish it by yourself," he said, but added it's not impossible. "We’ve had customers dining in, they almost finished it all."

The price for a giant croissant starts at $45.

Six pound pho bowl at XO Bistro Bar. (Evan Kenny/CTV News Edmonton)

XO Bistro Bar also has a giant offering – a six-pound bowl of pho.

"It's two pounds of meat, two pounds of broth and two pounds of noodles," said Brenda Huynh, XO Bistro Bar operating manager. "I can't finish it. I can barely finish a large bowl," she laughed.

Since opening in 2017, Huynh said they've had the 'UnPHOgettable Challenge'.

Anyone who can finish the $75, six-pound bowl in one hour will get their meal free and a t-shirt.

"Then also a $100 gift card to the restaurant," said Huynh.

She said there's only been four or five people who have completed the challenge.

Mini-macrons made by Sucre M. (Galen McDougall/CTV News Edmonton)

From giant to mini, another local business has found success by altering a customer favourite.

After the COVID-19 pandemic, Sucre M wanted to attract customers by providing free samples.

"We started cutting up macarons and we just found that they looked not as appealing to the eye so we were like 'Why don’t we make mini versions of them?'" said Sucre M's Hanna Nguen.

Those samples were a hit with customers who kept asking to buy mini-macarons.

"I think we only did the three flavours to start and they sold out that weekend," said Nguen. "It just kind of grew from there," she added.

Mini-macrons made by Sucre M. (Galen McDougall/CTV News Edmonton)

A mother and daughter said the mini-macarons are the reason they decided to shop at Sucre M for the first time.

"She sent them to me from Instagram so she’s like 'Mom, we have to go here and buy these,' so that’s why we’re here," said Natalia with a laugh.

Nguen said the minis are more tedious and time-consuming to make but added the bite-sized treat also means less guilt.

"Customers but they always joke like ah, it’s less calories, you could just pop it in your mouth and not think twice," said Nguen.

  

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