Who has the best deep dish pizza in Chicago?
This is a very controversial topic, and opinions most certainly differ. Some of the most famous ones that people often visit include Gino's East, the original Uno's, Pizano's, and Lou Malnati's (we're excluding places like Giordano's who are famous for their stuffed pizza).
Most of these places don't take reservations, so you pretty much have to either show up at an off time, wait (possibly hours), or try to find a seat at the bar.
We were visiting Chicago during Labor Day Weekend, probably one of the most tourist-filled weekends in Chicago. Most of the pizza places right on Michigan Avenue (Uno's, Due, Gino's East, Giordano's) had ridiculous wait times. We finally called a Lou Malnati's at a slightly farther location. When they told us the wait was around 20 minutes (mind you, this was at around 2PM), we hopped into a cab and jetted over to the restaurant.
By the time we arrived, the wait had grown again to 45 minutes. *SIGH*. Thankfully, while we were waiting for a proper seat, some bar seats showed up, and we immediately grabbed them (hooray!).
We started with a simple Spinach Salad ($9.55 + $2.50 for chicken), which comes with fresh strawberries, red onion, and goat's cheese tossed in a homemade balsamic vinaigrette. We chose to add chicken as well. The salad was fine. Nothing special, but healthy enough to assuage our guilt for what was to come.
We were a party of three, so we ordered a small "The Malnati Chicago Classic™" made with Lou's lean sausage, some extra cheese and vine-ripened tomato sauce on Buttercrust.™
We also ordered an individual sized "Lou", which includes spinach, mushrooms, and sliced Roma tomatoes covered with blend of mozzarella, Romano and cheddar cheese on garlic Buttercrust.™
Both pizzas were delicious. They take a long time to bake, but they are worth it.
At 3:30PM the place is still kind of full!
Is it one of the best deep dish pizzas in Chicago? If only I could tell you. My trip did not afford me nearly enough time to try all of the most famous deep dish pizza places. I definitely enjoyed the pizza at Lou Malnati's, and I also really loved the stuffed pizzas at Giordano's (the only other pizza place I visited). Honestly, I really don't think you can go wrong.
The thick, buttery crust is definitely unique to Chicago, and I love it.
Lou Malnati's Pizzeria Chicago
*multiple locations *