Friday, January 23, 2015

A Girl and Seven (or so) Pizza Places

I treat this blog like an online scrapbook/journal: part rambling thoughts, part descriptions and reviews of events I attend, places I travel, food I cook, books I read, and movies I watch. One thing I'm missing is descriptions of places I've eaten, at least as a consistent feature. I regularly reference this space when I'm trying to remember where I was on a certain day or what I did for a holiday, and remembering great meals with great people is something I'd like to do better at.
For my first round of reviews, I decided to group together similar restaurants and share only my favorites. And since it's a Friday, I'm going to start with pizza. Pizza in Chicago is a matter of pride and loyalty, but I grew up on thin crust so that's where my pizza love truly lies.

It should also be noted that tonight Jesus and I made our own pizza (bbq chicken...a new one for both of us) as much as I've enjoyed these places, obviously I still like to sling my own dough on a Friday night.
My Pie Pizza
Good for: deep dish & delivery. This is my go to for Chicago style, if I have a craving for it or a guest requests it. It's a more local option than Giordano's, which is my runner up for Chicago style pizza.
Ambiance: I've only had it delivered, but I know the place is super small.
Notes: you can collect My Pie Points from every pizza box. 20 gets you a free pie!

John's Pizzeria
Good for: huge thin crust pizzas, delivery, takeout, or dine-in. This is the type of pizza I grew up on. Giant, square-cut, and with a cracker-like crust.
Ambiance: old school pizza joint, complete with gingham-style table cloths.
Notes: Make sure to get your free cola! 1 or 2 liters depending on how much you spend.

Piece Pizza
Good for: hanging out with friends, especially ones with differing tastes--Piece specializes in individual pies with loads of options for toppings--and three different sauces. Again, thin cracker-like crusts rule here.
Ambiance: bar & grill meets open air eatery. Lots of natural light makes it a great place to meet up anytime.
Notes: Piece is also a brewery, so come thirsty!

Dante's Pizzeria
Good for: date night, dinners out, something different. Dante's serves New York style pizzas influenced by Dante's Inferno. Make sure to try one of their specialties, you won't find them anywhere else.
Ambiance: casual-hip.
Notes: Order by the slice or by the pie. Can't really go wrong.

Santullo's Eatery
Good for: slices, New York style, lunch or late night. The sandwiches are good too!
Ambiance: casual. Feels like a campus staple, except it's not on a campus.
Notes: they have vegan/vegetarian options!

Honorable Mention:
The Boiler Room: The pizza is good, but man oh man do I hate how loud it is in there. It's a bar first, then pizza place. (Am I old? I'm old.)

Special Shout Out:
Ian's Pizza in Madison, WI. Not just because if I'm in Madison with Jesus we have to come here. They offer pizza by the slice, toppings you've only dreamed of (Mac & Cheese. Jerk Chicken. something called Drunken Ravioli.), and as many organic and locally-sourced ingredients possible. Awesome (huge) salads. So yeah, Ian's gets a shout out.

On my To Try List:
Pizzeria Da Nella: It will never be to soon to taste Neapolitan pizza again. 
Dimo's: the Ian's of Chicago (no, seriously. Current menu options include Chicken n' Waffles and S'mores. Plus lots of vegan options.)

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