We Tried Tide Pod Pizza and We're Still Alive
Photos by Sydney Mondry
For the past few weeks, it seems like everyone in America has been asking themselves one question: Why the hell are teens filming themselves biting into Tide Pods? Inexplicably, the poisonous laundry globs have been munched, cooked, and, because there is no God, vaped for internet fame. What started as a joke about the detergent balls being mysteriously appetizing has officially gone too far.
Luckily, one Brooklyn pizzeria has offered a solution: an edible "Pied Pod" aimed at saving the teens.
"Listen. We're concerned about the youths. They're eating laundry detergent pods. We needed to do something," Vinnie's Pizzeria in Brooklyn wrote in a since-deleted Instagram post on Thursday. "Our Pied Pods have [those] bright, alluring colors that youths crave BUT are 100 percent edible and 100 percent not poison."
As soon as we saw them, we felt the same inexplicable urge that's spurred countless teens toward bodily harm and YouTube glory. So we called up Sean Berthiaume, the co-owner of Vinnie's and inventor of the Pied Pod to try some for ourselves.
For Berthiaume, the idea to transform one of the world's most delicious memes into an actual delicacy came to him in a dream.
"It's pretty boring, actually. It was just me coming into work and figuring out to do it," he said. "So I woke up and rushed to work to actually make the Pied Pods. If I'm not at work, I'm usually thinking about work and, I guess, dreaming about it."
Unfortunately, the Pied Pod isn't a full-time member of the Vinnie's menu, but Berthiaume humored us and whipped up a few for us to try. Instead of mini pizzas, each one is a tiny calzone, boasting that signature Tide swirl. They're stuffed with pepperoni, cheese, and Italian seasonings, and topped with orange-and-blue-dyed mozzarella—and won't require you to call Poison Control after taking a bite.
"I think what makes the pods so appetizing is the swirling hypnotic colors," Berthiaume said.
While they might not have the same gooey consistency as a package of caustic chemicals, the dry, bready pockets are great dipped in marinara sauce. The highlight of eating them, though, is definitely living out your Tide Pod fantasy without suffering internal organ damage.
These little masterpieces might not be easy to get, but Berthiaume says, "If people start coming in and asking for them, then I'll put them on the menu." So if you're in the Brooklyn area, it's worth giving the place a call, especially if you want to help the "kids to get back into actual food." As Vinnie's says, "Hope, not soap!"
Follow Beckett Mufson on Twitter.