Mystery Diner in Geneva: Doughocracy grants patrons creative pizza powers

Third Street in downtown Geneva is home to a vibrant dining scene that we still haven’t explored completely. Case in point is Doughocracy, a fast-casual spot for pizza, salads and craft beer that turned out to be a happy find.

The bright, Fulton Street corner location, with outdoor seating available, sports an interior accented with wood elements and a comfortable, relaxed dining area.

Patrons order at one end of a counter stretching to the back of the restaurant. All along the expanse are containers filled with a colorful array of vegetables, cheeses, and meats for pizzas and salads. The pizzas are prepared with hand-stretched dough and baked in a high-heat conveyor oven that pops them out with a crisp crust that’s lightly browned and delicious after a cooking process that lasts a little over three minutes.

My dining companion went online before our visit to study the range of signature pizza recipes and the build-your-own menu option at Doughocracy, which lets you vote for your own choices of sauce, cheeses, meat and more than a dozen veggies.

The sauces range from traditional tomato sauce to pesto, barbecue and extra-virgin olive oil. You’ll even find a spaghetti and meatball pizza, which sounds improbable but is likely good.

My fellow diner jumped on the Wine & Dine, which features roasted red peppers, artichokes, roasted garlic, Italian sausage, fresh mozzarella, pecorino Romano and tomato sauce.

“Delightfully satisfying,” he said between bites.

I stole a slice and loved the crust’s taste and texture.

I chose the roasted vegetable salad, and received a generous bowl of flavorful mixed greens jam-packed with roasted red peppers, zucchini, eggplant, cherry tomatoes and crumbled gorgonzola so tangy and good I didn’t even need the balsamic vinaigrette dressing I requested on the side.

As the friendly team prepared the dish, I was told I could have it served atop pizza crust, but I went old school. Because they momentarily were roasting a fresh batch of onion, I was given another choice of ingredient and added some wonderful mushrooms to the mix. There’s plenty of salad for sharing.

A blackboard near the beer taps lists the craft beer offerings. And for those with a sweet tooth for dessert, Doughocracy offers a Gooey Butter Cake or a Nutella Bomb, in which the fresh dough is an ingredient.

This is a quick spot to satisfy those pizza cravings with a well-prepared, 12-inch pie.

As for the restaurant’s name, the establishment’s motto is: Life, liberty and the pursuit of pizza. We throw our votes Doughocracy’s way and have added the eatery to our list of interesting pizza places well worth a return.

• The Mystery Diner is a newsroom employee at the Kane County Chronicle. The diner’s identity is not revealed to restaurant staff when ordering or picking up the food. If the Mystery Diner cannot recommend the establishment, we will not publish a review.


WHAT: Doughocracy

WHERE: 407 S. Third St., Geneva

WHEN: 4 to 8 p.m. Monday and Tuesday; noon to 8 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday

PHONE: 630-208-1135