If you attended Arlington Heights High School in the ’90s as I did, you were probably a regular at one of two Westside restaurants: the now-defunct Under the Tower and Mama’s Pizza, the latter of which hosted an all-you-can-eat lunch special, the Yellow Jacket Country Club. (Just $3.99 with your student I.D.!) Since lunches were only 45 minutes long, the second story of Mama’s original Camp Bowie location (which was eventually razed and replaced with a bank) was brimming with often-stoned pizza-lusting teens cramming slices of pie into their faces like feral animals. It was less a social hour and more the stuff of a NatGeo documentary.
Mama’s is one of those eateries I can never judge objectively – I’ve affectionately dubbed them Mother’s Milk restaurants. The place set my palate for pizza, and while this town has seen a sharp rise of kitchens purveying gourmet, crafty, organic pie loaded with precious toppings like truffle oil and caramelized whatever, there’s still a special place in my heart for Mama’s and its ilk.
Just a few weeks ago, Mama’s turned 50. Mama’s franchises are all over, including West Berry Street (the oldest), North Fielder Road, Cityview, Mansfield, North Richland Hills, and an upcoming spot in Hudson Oaks. The owner of the Camp Bowie locale (and a few others) for the last 15 years has been Jordan Scott, another former AHHS student. Naturally.