The 1999 flick “The Deep End of the Ocean” was not a standout success among critics, but one thing that did stand out about the movie was its ability to broach the sometimes controversial practice of drinking milk with pizza.
In one scene of the movie (which chronicles the tale of how a family recoups following the return of their son, Ben, who was kidnapped nine years prior), the recently reunified nuclear unit is sitting at the dinner table eating pizza. It’s a little awkward, but generally all is well — that is until Ben innocently requests a glass of milk to pair with his slice.
The older brother Vincent — acting as older brothers do — immediately replies in a saucy manner: “You do milk with your pizza?”
The table pauses. Glances are exchanged. And the parents look at their son in an anxious fashion. Ben, clearly self-assured in his pizza-eating habits, confidently answers: “Yeah.”
It’s a memorable scene, one that captures the uncomfortable nature of the situation, but also perfectly encapsulates the attitude people can have around the act of drinking a tall glass of milk with a pie. Similarly, in one of the opening scenes of the 1990 hit movie “Home Alone,” the fact that the McCallister family is drinking milk with their pizza seems to baffle some on the Internet.
But while drinking milk with pizza can raise some eyebrows, it’s actually a pretty common refreshment used by Americans to wash down a slice or two. (Whether or not dipping pizza in milk is an abnormal practice, however, is up for debate.)
Here are a few reasons why you should consider pouring a tall, cold glass of milk alongside your next slice:
1. The smooth and creamy texture of the milk jives well with a hot slice
Many people swear by drinking milk with their spaghetti and tomato sauce, so why not extend that same logic to pizza? The smooth and velvety consistency of the milk provides a nice contrast with the salty and savory flavors of the pizza and its toppings.
Plus, tomato-based foods, like the sauce in pizza, can be acidic and sometimes lead to indigestion and heartburn. And milk is believed to help relieve heartburn, whereas carbonated drinks like soda can actually exacerbate the condition.
2. Milk can help neutralize the spiciness of the pizza
In addition to help relieving any potential heartburn, sipping on a glass of milk with your slice may help neutralize some of the spicinesses from the pepperoni toppings or the chili flakes you generously sprinkled. It’s proven that milk can help soothe the burning sensation that dances on your taste buds when you indulge in a spicy dish. Filling up a goblet with a hefty pour of cool milk may be the perfect accompaniment to those slices that pack a little more heat.
3. There’s a nostalgia factor
Did you grow up drinking milk with every meal? If so, pouring a tall cold glass of the dairy beverage alongside your pizza may be a nice trip down memory lane and transport you back to a time when life was carefree. There’s a definite nostalgia component to chugging a mug of milk — and who doesn’t want to be young again?
So when it comes to drinking a cup of milk with your slice, we’re of the firm opinion that you shouldn’t knock it till you try it!