When I decided to move to Colorado for college last year, I knew what I was giving up; seeing my dog everyday, my bed, having a kitchen right downstairs. But what I realized that I actually started to miss was the pizza (and I’m not a big pizza girl). Colorado might have super dope dope, but their pizza is far from it. Its almost not worth eating.
But this past weekend I went to the Windy City with my boyfriend’s family to try Chicago Pizza Oven Grinders–and I just about died. I can’t begin to explain how amazing the food was, which makes leaving for school again that much more difficult. Oven Grinders is by far one of my favorite pizza places now.
On North Clark Street, Chicago, Illinois resides the narrow, three-story brick building where the magic happens. I had been told not to eat anything big the day we went, so I was starving when we got there for dinner. There is always a wait no matter what day or time you go, so when I heard ours was two hours I was thankful it wasn’t any worse.
Unfortunately, that night it was raining so the standing room for waiting was full of people and getting pretty sweaty. But toughing it out is totally worth it. And what’s really cool about the whole process of getting seated is that the owner looks at you, memorizes the order of the people who come in, and how big your party is. The rules are that if you leave and come back or if your whole party isn’t present then you won’t be seated.
*Note: They only accept payment in the form of cash so be sure to know that before going in!*
Lucky for us, we got seated after only an hour (even though the time he tells you is usually spot on). At this point, I was more than ready to have food in front of me.
I was told that the Chef’s salad and Mediterranean flatbread was amazing–and when I got the chance to try it, it was! I got full on that alone, without my pizza having been there yet. The Chef’s salad had two dressings to mix together–poppy seed and garlic–which sounds weird but was delicious. And the flatbread was super large and thin, so as it sat in the middle of the table, everyone could tear off pieces closest to them to eat.
It was finally time for my pizza–which is actually a mix between a pizza and a pot pie. The pot pie is cooked upside down and then flipped over, bowl scooped out of the center, and placed on your plate before you. I had the option of meat sauce or veggie sauce, mushrooms or no mushrooms, and white bread crust. I ordered the meat sauce, no mushrooms, and the white bread crust, all of which made the meal perfect for my specific tastes. I got the half-pounder (compared to the one-pounder) which was plenty, with leftovers, and totally out of my fridge the next day.
It was the best pizza meal I think I have ever had and I was in a food coma for hours to come. The meat sauce was my favorite part of the meal, followed closely by the crust. I wished I had had a bigger stomach to finish it all that night, but the leftovers were almost just as great as in the restaurant. I give this place a 10/10 for anyone who knows their pizza.
And although driving through Chicago isn’t the easiest task, I can’t wait to go back. Chicago Pizza Oven Grinders is a must-try whenever you’re in the Windy City.