Pizano’s Chicago

This weekend I traveled to Chicago with my fellow fraternity brothers for a convention…which is essentially an excuse to eat and drink excessively until the wee hours of the morning. They say the city never sleeps. This has to be true because the bars are open until five and I certainly didn’t get much shuteye on the trip.

The Windy City is one of my favorite towns in America, and since I live in the Midwest, is one of the cities I’ve visited the most the last several years. It has everything I look for in a great city — amazing food, a fantastic music scene, vibrant theater, and its own distinct personality. Oh, and the bean. Can’t forget about the bean.

The. Bean.

Now, there are many stories I could tell about what went on in Chicago, including stolen wallets, getting solicited to buy drugs on the subway, a $2,000 VIP club table and $500 bottle of Belvedere being bought for us, and the profound use of stripper poles at every single bar and club on Division Street, but this particular post is going to be about the greatest pizza I’ve ever consumed.

The aforementioned pizza was at a restaurant called Pizano’s, an unassuming old-school pizzeria on State Street with pictures of the Italian family who owns the place all over the walls. Our waiter was quite the character. He called himself Uncle Chach. This guy was legendary. I could see Chach in a mobster movie gunning people down Scarface style. He proceeded to call us “Kansas State” all night because we were all wearing our Purple Pride shirts and during dinner told us where we could “find so much *insert your favorite word for the female sex organ here* that we would drown in it.” The man also knew his Italian food and beer, steering us through the menu and even pushing us away from ordering heavy appetizers because “it would be retarded to ruin our pizza.” Needless to say, we all had some great laughs and he got a huge tip.

My group and I started off with the bruchetta because you can’t go to an authentic Italian restaurant without ordering it. This stuff was delicious, smothered with the freshest tomatoes I’ve ever tasted, basil, and heaps of mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Probably the second best bruchetta I’ve ever had behind the 4 Olives wine bar in Manhattan.

Then came the pizza. Pizano’s menu claims that their thin-crust pizza is the best pizza in Chicago, the #4 pizza in America, and Oprah-approved on her old show. Those are some lofty claims to live up to, but the pizza did not disappoint. We ordered the meat lovers thin-crust, which was covered with hamburger, imported pepperoni, Italian sausage, and ground beef. Long story short, the pizza was perfect. It was uncanny how the crust, ridiculous amounts of cheese, and all the meat blended together to create the absolute best pizza I have ever tasted. I washed all of this pizza down with the local brew — Goose Island 312 wheat beer, which went exceptionally with the spiciness of the meat on the pizza.

Oprah and Mike Approved.

Between Uncle Chach and the amazing pizza, Pizano’s was one of the greatest restaurant experiences I’ve had. Being in Chicago and all of the personality of the city and the establishment were just the icing on the cake (or the topping on the pizza if you enjoy those kinds of puns). And, as Uncle Chach would say, “Those God damn other places can’t hold a candle to our f****** pizza.” So seriously, try this stuff out…or he’ll find you.

One Response to “Pizano’s Chicago”
  1. Chris says:

    That pizza was so damn good.

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