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Friday, March 11, 2011

My Favorite Pizza Joint in America

Deep dish pizza is eaten with knife and fork, but contrary to what many folks think, it is not a thick crust pizza. Dough is patted high up the side of a deep dish pizza pan, with ingredients placed in reverse order to a regular pizza. Mozzarella cheese comes first, followed by additional toppings like sausage, pepperoni, or mushrooms, all doused with chunks of fresh plum tomato sauce.  In Chicago, Lou Malnati’s has perfected the art of pizza making. The crust has just enough butter to make it flaky but not soggy. The sausage is a dense layer of meat. The chunky tomatoes in the sauce are both sweet and zesty.  Lou got his start in the business working with his dad in Chicago’s first deep dish pizzeria in the 1940s, before opening his restaurant in a northern suburb, Lincolnwood, in 1971. Getting a table at Lou Malnati’s can try your patience, so follow the advice of the wise Fran Leavitt, my mother-in-law, who happens to be a native Lincolnwooder. Call in advance and ask how long a wait, putting your name down on the list. Then order your pizza and salads on the phone, so when you finally do show up, 10 minutes prior to your approximate wait time, your pizza will already be cooking in the oven.

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 03/11/11 at 02:00 PM
Food • (3) CommentsPermalink Bookmark and Share


How about Casserta's on Federal Hill in Providence?

Picture of Papa Lew Comment by Papa Lew
on 03/11/11 at 10:19 PM

Lou's is delicious, and what is even tastier is the backstory about who really created the deep dish pizza, whether it was Lou's father Rudy or Ike Swewll at Pizzeria Uno. But like a lot of restaurants in Chicago, they have permanent signs saying they are the original and the best! mp/m

Picture of Mike Maddaloni - @thehotiron Comment by Mike Maddaloni - @thehotiron
on 03/11/11 at 10:43 PM

Lew, I already gave a shout out to Casserta's in my Boston Globe piece on the best pizza places in New England. Mike, thanks for the history lesson. I'll take Malnati's over Unos any day!

Picture of Steve Jermanok Comment by Steve Jermanok
on 03/11/11 at 11:41 PM

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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk. is an Austin-Lehman Adventure's Top 125 Best Travel Blog Semi-Finalist

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