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New pizza place on Grand

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Does anyone have any information on the new pizza place going in on Grand, just West of Ogden? Sign says something about coal buring oven. Is this enough of a draw for a neighborhood that already has at least three pizza places within three blocks? I have high hopes that this will be a chowhound type place.

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  1. Is a coal-burning oven a good thing for pizza?

    3 Replies
      1. re: rubinow

        I have heard from a couple of New Yorkers (who have these) that it is a great thing because it makes the temp of the oven around 600 degrees. Yet, I don't quite get it, is there someone who shovels coal into the furnace like they used to do for trains, to keep it stoked?

        1. re: curry

          Its kind of like a wood buring oven - you stoke up the oven with coals, light it up, and over a couple hours it burns down. Wood ovens can get up to 750 degrees, coal up to 800 degrees. Then you keep a pile of coal on the side to maintain a high temperature. In either case, pizzas cook quick, so a crispy crust that is still soft in the middle. Coal gives more of a grilled taste, similar to grilling food on your Weber, but the overall high temp of the oven quickly cooks the toppings as well. It started when Italian immigrants came over and found coal easier to get than the traditional wood. I don't imagine its too healthy, or good for the environment, but my recollection from college is that they taste delicious. Not sure about this place on Grand.

    1. This will be open soon. They are waiting for inspection. Two partners, one from the East Coast and the guy who will run it is Jay, who is a bartender at the Matchbox. From what I have heard, his pizza recipe is great even when he cooks it in a home oven. I have been waiting for 9 months for this place to open since it is 4 blocks from my house...

      1 Reply
      1. re: chgo36

        I can't wait. Does the restaurant have a name yet? Any idea when it will open?

      2. Coal Fire
        1321 W. Grand Ave.
        312-226-2625
        Open 5pm-11 everyday but Monday.

        I haven't been there. Sounds like this is just a couple blocks west of the block of Grand with May Street Market, D'Amato's Bakery, and Terry's Toffee.

        1. One of the Tribune food writers did a "First bite" piece on this restaurant.

          http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/op...

          1. I am a big fan of thin crust pizza( I really do not like pan, or chicago style pizza), and this place is on my list to get to. I have heard both really good, and some decent reviews, nothing bad, so I am looking forward to going

            1. Coal Fired is open!!! The pizza is great, in MHO, better than the others mentioned in the same realm. It is currently BYOB with a simple menu, pizzas and a few salads. I was lucky enough to have a chance to sample it the week before they opened and could not wait til they got the approval to open to the public. I went on Day 2 and it was better than I had the previous week. They were much busier than expected so the service was a bit slow but they will fix it quick. Will be back on a regular basis!!

              1. The partner and I hit it this evening. Quite good... reminded me of The Two Amy's in DC.
                We got the meat pizza: salami, pepperoni and sausage. It had a nice spicy kick to it. The service was pretty quick, the music rocked (Best of the Rolling Stones) and it is BYOB!

                1 Reply
                1. re: delk

                  I need to try this place. On a recent business trip I hit the same "coal fire" pizza place in New York three times in four days.