The Chipotle off of O’Connor Boulevard is practically an extension of the University of Dallas campus. It is impossible to grab a burrito there without running into some other student looking for food from a conveniently close location. Last week, I made my way to that oh-so-familiar shopping center, but this time my destination was Classic Chicago Gourmet Pizza.
Located just seven minutes from campus, this pizza place has some serious Chicago swagger in its marketing and atmosphere. The walls are deep red and covered with sports memorabilia while the menu features pizzas such as “The Great Chicago Fire,” “Home Alone” and “Wrigley Field.” The atmosphere was pleasant and the small seating area was clean and well-lit.
Our waitress seated us immediately and her service continued to be prompt and polite throughout our meal. Our drinks came in large mason jars, an unexpectedly hipster touch in an otherwise classic pizza-joint environment. Because the service was so excellent, I began to be excited about our food. We laughed over the catchy tag lines associated with each pizza and finally ordered the “Chicago Supreme” and the “Chicago Bulls,” about which, our menu advised us: “don’t get run over with this Beast!” The pizza features pepperoni, Canadian bacon, sausage, bacon and extra cheese. “The Chicago Supreme” features pepperoni, sausage, mushroom, onions, green peppers, black olives and extra cheese.
Unfortunately, our pizzas were simply mediocre. Even more disappointing, they were not at all authentic. Real Chicago-style pizza is incredibly thick and topped with a chunky tomato sauce to keep the toppings beneath from burning in the longer cooking time that its thickness requires. Our pizzas were deep dish but the cheese and toppings were lumped thickly on top of sauce that was barely warm and rested on a doughy crust.
It was difficult to determine which pizza was better since both had flaws. I am a meat lover, but the confusion of meats on the “Chicago Bulls” was overwhelming and the meat flavors blended poorly. However, it was better than the “Chicago Supreme.” The pizzas were not unusually or imaginatively bad, they just had the taste of standard, poorly executed deep-dish pizza, which does not taste good going down and sits in your stomach like a ton of bricks.
That was the redeeming note of this pizza experience. The pizza was quite filling. The men of our party were full after two hefty slices and the two large pizzas were affordable. If you are not picky about the taste of your pizza but want a filling meal and are looking for a pleasant, near-by environment in which to eat it, then Classic Chicago Gourmet Pizza might be the place for you.
Classic Chicago Gourmet Pizza
114 E. John Carpenter Fwy #160
Irving, TX 75062 (972) 717-7770
Hours: Monday — Thursday: 11 a.m. — 9 p.m.
Friday: 11a.m. — 10 p.m.
Saturday — Sunday: 12 p.m. — 9 p.m.