Brett Kavanaugh brings pizza to the Supreme Court and it is not good

Just call him the ‘pizza justice.’ No really, he doesn’t mind

Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh, possibly thinking about pizza. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Supreme Court Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh, possibly thinking about pizza. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Posted January 14, 2020 at 4:34pm

The crust is slightly burnt around the edges where the cheese bubbles. The pepperonis are large, oily and plentiful, so no complaints there.

Brett Kavanaugh has already left his mark on the Supreme Court, and it is pizza.

“When I arrived, I noticed the cafeteria did not serve pizza,” the justice said in November. “I thought, ‘What an outrage.’ My legacy is secure. It’s fine by me if I’m ever known as the ‘pizza justice.’”

He may have been joking as he addressed the conservative Federalist Society, but as the most junior member of the court, it is Kavanaugh’s very real duty to help oversee the cafeteria — an assignment Ruth Bader Ginsburg once called “truly disheartening.”

The pizza he championed is now on the menu. Is it good enough to define an entire legacy?

No, it isn’t.

Kavanaugh has been on the bench since October 2018, following the most contentious confirmation battle since Clarence Thomas’ in 1991. The hearings included an impassioned defense of teen drinking and allegations of sexual assault, which the nominee denied. It’s hard to imagine a pizza topping that moment in Senate history.

But I wanted to taste for myself, so I headed to the Supreme Court cafeteria, a grim and ill-lit space open to the public, to try Kavanaugh’s za.

Brett Kavanaugh's pizza. (Clyde McGrady / CQ Roll Call)
Kavanaugh’s pizza. (Clyde McGrady/CQ Roll Call)

My visit coincided with oral arguments involving the New Jersey “Bridgegate” scandal. But even that traffic jam paled in comparison to the one causing me to wait almost half an hour for mediocre pizza.

Since there were four people in front of me, I had to wait 25 minutes for a thin crust personal pan pepperoni pizza. There was no “supreme” option … which, c’mon. The small ovens are only capable of making one pie at a time, unlike the assembly line style of &pizza, the D.C. darling that opened a branch in a congressional office building last year.

If you’re looking for a flavor comparison, I’d rank it just below Pizza Hut and just above the average gas station offering.

The meal comes with a small container of mesclun greens that some people (not me) would call a salad. And at $8, it’s a decent price point.

There are faster and better options nearby: &pizza, We the Pizza, Sbarro. If you’re at the Supreme Court cafeteria and there is no one in front of you in line (cannot stress that last point enough), then, by all means, give it a try. Otherwise, go with the wings.

All in all, I give it two stars (out of five). 

Serving on the cafeteria committee is a time-honored court tradition for junior justices, right up there with taking notes and answering the conference room door. Elena Kagan gave us froyo. Stephen Breyer gave us Starbucks. Kavanaugh gave us this.

Loading the player...