Memories of a pizza that weighed 5 pounds…

I would be doing a terrible injustice to Chicago if I did not talk about deep dish pizza. Some people do not consider it pizza, hate it or have a prejudice against thick pizzas (New Yorkers mainly). However, I am not one to judge a pizza by it’s looks – I am not so superficial. If it tastes good and fills me up, me and that pizza will be best friends. So I decided to visit one of the famous deep dish pizza joints in Chicago, Lou Malnati’s. This was on a Saturday night around 11pm, just after watching Strikeforce, so Shani and I were starving.

We get to Lou Malnati’s, and the place is empty – not too surprising since they are about to close. The decor is nice, looking like your standard restaurant bar. We take our seats and quickly order a medium pizza with sausage and mushrooms. I didn’t even bother to get ham this time, after tasting how good sausage is in Chicago. Not to mention, ham is not on the menu – so what gives Chicago? Why the ham hate? You might have seen medium pizza and thought, “David,  I thought you said you were hungry?” Well deep dish pizzas are not on the same level as others. One medium pizza, weighing in about 5 pounds, can fill three people up no problem. So Shani and I were going to have a hands (and stomachs) full.

The waitress informs us that the pizza will take 30 minutes to cook. Shani looks frustrated – when she gets hungry, all patience and rationale seem to disappear. So we both try to distract each other, talking about things other than how hungry we are and how a delicious pizza would feel in our bellies – but there is only so long we can play this game. I keep asking her how long has it been, desperately hoping that time will be jumping forward. I go through stages of hope as I watch a waitress with a pizza coming our direction, then despair as she passes us to another table.

Finally, our important guest decides to show up to dinner – Mr. Deep Dish Pizza. He is welcomed with open mouths as we prepare ourselves for a feast. The pizza was about 2 inches thick, and structured opposite of a typical pizza. The sauce is on top, then the toppings, cheese and of course the crust. Each slice of pizza is heavy and would be a hot mess to eat bare handed. I have my fork and knife in hand, ready to greet my guest. Wow! This pizza is fantastic. The sausage is incredible, going perfectly with the mushrooms. The cheese and the sauce are excellent. And the crust, has a great texture that blends together so well with the rest of the pie – a perfectly orchestrated masterpiece. My favorite part of it was the edge of the pie, that had a crispy pie crunch infused with wonderful pizza flavor. This pizza was definitely worth the wait, and it holds it weight against any pizza out there, pun intended.

Once again, Azucena and I clean house, not leaving a speck of pizza on the pan. This was the perfect size meal for her and I, so if you happen to be in Chicago and want to indulge yourself in some pizza pie, do yourself a favor and visit Lou Malnati’s. I cannot wait to visit Chicago again, so I am actually going to learn how to make a deep dish pizza at home. I will let you know how that works out!

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