I am Joe's Chicago Style Pizza
I am Joe's Chicago Style Pizza. Although I have the word "Chicago" in my name, I am actually served in many parts of the world. In the United States I compete with huge varieties of pizza products. New York Style pizza has a thinner crust. Local pizza joints from Maine to New Mexico cook up unique concoctions designed to make customers forget all about me. Frozen supermarket pizza offers little competition save for price and convenience. I require more time and effort to compose, but I offer much greater benefit than a generic frozen frisbee of cheese.
I provide Joe with nutrition. I also supply him a nice full feeling in his tummy, which convinces Joe I am the World's Best Pizza. He knows that he and his friends can gather around a large Chicago Style pizza at a local restaurant to enjoy a pleasant evening of food and conversation. In some incarnations I offer a full sampling of all 4 major food groups. Joe can literally make a meal out of me.
Joe knows he has many food choices within a short drive from his home. He often visits a local hamburger fast-food chain or a Mexican-themed restaurant on his way home from work. His favorite steak house is downtown and offers valet parking on weekends. Joe always comes back to me eventually. He knows I offer a variety of comfort foods packed in a familiar and dependable buttery flaky crust. We have an understanding. Joe sometimes brings his dates or invites co-workers to dine with him. I can be ordered in a range of sizes; there's always enough to go around. Everyone leaves satisfied.
I am typically round and deep-dish. My crust is buttery and flaky, taking much longer to bake than my traditional thin crust counterparts. Joe and his guests understand that the reward is worth the wait. The typical Chicago Style pizza restaurant carries a special warning on the menu; "pizzas take up to 25 minutes to prepare."
I am usually made with mozzarella cheese. My cheese rests at the bottom of the pie, on top of my crust. Sliced or grated mozzarella under girds chunky tomato sauce, which supports any number of toppings and sometimes more grated cheese.
My toppings vary widely, usually by region. In Chicago meat toppings prevail, given The Windy City's rich history of stockyards and European culture. Ham, Bacon, Pepperoni, Sausage, Hamburger, and even chicken are offered as alternatives in many fine pizza joints. I have no preference myself; any topping fills me up just fine,
I have a cousin, also from Chicago, called flat-pizza. The crust, obviously, presents thinner and a little crispier, but not as crisp as New York Style pies. My less corpulent cousin offers a thinner tomato sauce, usually with no tomato chunks and usually with a spicier kick than I.
Joe typicaly eats me with a knife and fork. I tend to be a sloppy meal due to my high volume of cheese, sauce, and toppings, My deep-dish crust servers as a vessel to contain my gooey goodness, but removing a slice from me causes an avalanche of pizza particles that cannot be contained by human hands.
Joe knows where to find the best versions of me.
Were he to ask around, he would get as many answers as he has friends.
Grants Italian on the South Side has long been famous for their Chicago
Style and New York Style pies. Uno's Pizzeria, although a chain, also
boasts a long tradition of happy pizza eaters. Giordano's has a web
site from which mail-order Chicago Style stuffed crust pizzas can be
Joe doesn't just eat me. He also gifts me. Joe purchases gift certificates for birthdays, weddings, and graduations. He finds the certificates easy to mail, certainly easier than a whole pizza ;). He has learned that a Chicago Style pizza always makes a wonderful gift. His recipients invariably express their gratitude to him. Sometimes Joe finds himself invited to dine on the same coupons he gave as a gift. He enjoys the delicious irony.