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Dec 4, 2009 06:54 PM

Chicago Pizza Kitchen in Maple. Easily the Best Pizza in the Toronto area. Worth a delivery charge.

Ok. For starters, I don't write food reviews in anyway. I am new to this.

As a pizza lover my whole life, growing up in Toronto, I finally stumbled accross the type of Pizza I like best. Pan Pizza. Once this was determined years ago I then began to search for a pizza that I like best in a Pan Pizza format. Pizza Hut imho has always had the "take a number" company assembly line taste and it is full of mistakes and not that thick at all. Not worthy of the title Deep Dish. So my search continued. I've always read allot about the subject of Pan Pizza and I was on a quest for a Deep Dish in the Toronto area.

I finally came accross a referal on another message boards lounge section on the topic of Deep Dish and was advised to check out Chicago Pizza Kitchen Problem is I live in East York, and this store is located in Maple (North West GTA). I do drive so I did consider a trip out there. That is how badly I wanted true Deep Dish. So I called them, and I spoke to Spiro the owner. He was very nice. And he gave his business a personal customer service touch by way of his awesome phone personality. He told me a bit more about his history and company and he advised on trying the Spiro peperoni Deep Dish. I had 3 other friends to feed at my condo in East York, so I decided to go for it. I think I was still in complete shock that it seemed as though my quest for a true Deep Dish has now been matched. Lol. Anyways, Spiro explained a small delivery charge based on my location and I didnt mind either way. I was so interested in checking this food out.

My order arrives less than an hour after I placed it. A very sweet delivery girl shows up at thee time Spiro had said.

This pizza is simply amazing. I don't care if this sounds like a shill. I have never had pizza this tasty in my entire life. The pizza was topped with a meat sauce, the crust is flaky, tasty and amazing and the spices and marinated flavours of the meat and the Asigio cheese was incredible. The thickness was that of what I always wished a deep dish pan pizza to be. I need a knife and fork I thought, but the pizza is baked so well that I was able to pick it up and it held together no problem. Just like a slice would. 1 large pizza has fed 4 of my friends (all big guys) and there is still pizza left over. I have now found my new pizza place and it is called Chicago Pizza Kitchen in Maple. Keep up the good work Spiro. I hope to get to know you better and try more items on your amazing menu. **Side note** the garlic sticks are very original, crispy, and tasty. You will never have garlic bread sticks like this anywhere.

Ask Spiro for the green spicy chilli to add to your pizza. He included it in my order and if you like spices, it compliments the pizza in an incredible way.

I have no complaints. This is the best Pan Pizza I have ever had.

Chicago Pizza Kitchen
2338 Major MacKenzie Dr, Maple, ON L6A3Y7, CA

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  1. Can you tell us what the delivery charge was? I might be interested in getting delivery -- I hadn't realized they would deliver so far, but I guess that style of pizza holds its heat a lot better than thinner ones would.

    3 Replies
    1. re: CeeQueue

      Wow, Im also really surprised. Do tell us how much it cost for the deivery!

      1. re: CeeQueue

        I figured it was about a half hour delivery from Maple to my house in East York. Spiro charged me an $18.00 delivery fee. I also made certain that my order was over $40.00 in food alone.

        It seemed like a new concept for this far of a delivery. I did however express my peeked interest in what I had read about this place previously. He may have been just as excited about having me try this Pizza. He sounds passionate about his product and on such a personable level too.

      2. CPK has been mentioned here in the past, but we've never heard of delivery. Did Spiro mention that are hoping to open a location in Toronto? He mentioned that about a month ago.

        10 Replies
        1. re: foodyDudey

          I didnt ask about Toronto. I may however be interested in investing in a Toronto location. Nothing like this in the GTA. I'm a big fan of this place all of a sudden.

          1. re: foodyDudey

            They deliver locally and have since they've opened, as far as I know. However, the East York area is a bit out of their range. :) This is similar to what Dante's was doing (and may still be doing) by charging different fees per zone. However, I'd rather pay CPK than Dante's any day.

            1. re: Pincus

              When you say locally, do you know if Yonge & Eglinton would qualify?

              1. re: Ediblethoughts

                Their takeout menu has the local area map which doesn't go into Toronto. You would need to work something out with him for delivery like the OP.

                1. re: Pincus

                  I missed that map. Darn. Well, I'll think about it. I have a friend who lives in Woodbridge so maybe I can enjoy it vicariously through her...

                  1. re: Ediblethoughts

                    Why not drop by her place for a visit? :)

                    1. re: Ediblethoughts

                      was told 80$ min order for Yonge&Finch area, delivery charge ca. 10$

                      1. re: shekamoo

                        Oh. Yeah, I don't think so! We'd be eating pizza for weeks. Thanks for the info!

              2. re: foodyDudey

                When I first started going there I asked Spiros about delivery since we're in Aurora. He said they didn't deliver there but if I ordered enough food, he'd make a special trip for me.

                It seems like he's more open to the idea now and is charging for delivery. Seem fair enough to me.

                I always drive there. It's as much a visit as it is going out for pizza. Spiros, Helen and Denny are all really nice.


              3. I have had CPK's deep dish and it was delicious. I'm looking forward to getting chance to try the regular pizza style there sometime soon, as the deep dish style is not my preference.

                2 Replies
                1. re: OTFOODIE

                  You all should try the sandwiches too if you have not already. CPK gets deserving raves for their wonderful pizza but I think I like the sandwiches just as much. Their housemade Chicago Sausage Burger is ridiculously good. I think most if not all of the sandwiches come with complimentary sides. I believe sides rotate, probably according to what the kitchen feels like making that day. I could be wrong about that. I’ve had their coleslaw and a pasta salad as sides with sandwiches. Both were really good, but the pasta salad in particular was just fantastic. Their fresh cut fries are also delish. But their garlic sticks are probably my favourite thing on the menu that I've had so far. They are outstanding. I’d go just to eat those and leave happy.

                  Pizza is great there but try other things too!

                  1. re: OTFOODIE

                    This thread got to me. I had to follow up and try the regular ("Thin Crust") pizza today at lunch. "Thin Crust" is what they call it, which it certainly is compared to the Chicago Deep Dish style, but the crust is slightly thicker than Panago and about the same as Pizza Nova, but must lighter. (The comparison is only for thickness, not quality. Despite these two chains being among the better ones, they don't come close to CPK on taste.)

                    This was my third visit to CPK. My first was for the Beef sandwich, which was excellent. The second, was the visit referenced earlier in the thread, where I had the Deep Dish, which was far better than I expected, since it is not a style I would normally order.

                    I ordered mushroom, pepperoni, bacon and sausage and, as suggested in this thread, I asked for the meats to be pre-cooked and Spiro was happy to oblige. I also told him that I like my pizza well-done. It was perfect; without a doubt the best pizza I have ever tasted. The sauce was subtle, the cheese lightly browned and the crust was amazingly light. For my first several slices I topped it with CPK's chili in oil which took the whole wonderful experience to an ethereal level. I did remember to save a few pieces to have without the chili and they were scrumptious too.

                    I said it to Spiro, I said it above, and I'll repeat it again, this was simply the best pizza I have ever had.

                    Also, the tea - hot today at my request since it was so damp and chilly - was a great accompaniment.

                    The only negative: I left at around 12:40 and saw only two other customers. Sure the weather was a factor, but I hope his business is generally much better than this. I want to see this place succeed and stay around.

                    Oh yes, and the pizza is really good! ;)

                  2. The main thing about the pizza that i DIDN'T like, is that they put stuff like pepperoni raw under all the cheese and sauce, so they just get soggy greasy and rubbery. They never get the tasty crisp edges like when it's finished in a hot oven, on top of the cheese..

                    sure maybe its nitpicking but it's something i specifically recall not liking

                    18 Replies
                    1. re: duckdown

                      That is a fair enough comment.

                      1. re: duckdown

                        That is the correct layering order for Chicago deep-dish pizza. Cheese first (directly on the crust), followed by meats/veggies, then sauce on top. Spiro makes the "stuffed" variation, where the order is cheese, meats/veggies, top crust, and then sauce last, the version Giordano's serves. So even if he did put the meats on top of the cheese, no way for it to crisp up as the top crust would cover it.

                        Pizzeria Uno/Due (the originals in Chicago, as opposed to the national Uno Grill chain), Gino's East, and Lou Malnati's do the open-faced version with no top crust. Because of the heavy sauce layer, the meats don't crisp up in those either.

                        All explained here:

                        1. re: TexSquared

                          It might be correct but it gives the pepperoni a harder time I find. Still good tho.

                          1. re: magic

                            This is why I don't like pepperoni on a Chicago deep dish. Sausage is the way to go.

                            1. re: childofthestorm

                              I think I'm going to go to CPK today since I didn't make it for the chow meet there last month.. I will try one of the sandwiches, (the italian beef?) and grab a small pizza with sausage instead

                              1. re: duckdown

                                I'm guessing you've already made your trip, but be forewarned that two hearty males couldn't finish a "small deep dish" without the incentive of an Italian beef. Be prepared for leftovers!

                                1. re: FrankD

                                  Hehe, you are right, there are tons of leftovers today.

                                  Most of them are from the pizza though, I ate the whole sandwich...

                                  The sandwich wasn't bad, although I found it a little bit bland, I didn't find it overly "beefy" tasting but it was pretty good

                                  The pizza.. Well.. I hated the sausage. Pretty much for the same reason I dislike pepperoni's in a deep dish pizza.. It just gets soggy and greasy.

                                  It's a good pizza but the tomato sauce is just way too coarse, my family aren't huge raw tomato eaters and it was seriously overkill.. We ended up scraping a large majority of the sauce off the pizza before eating it.

                                  It is a really good pizza and I appreciate what they're doing, but its certainly not for everyone.. I for one would have preferred a different tomato sauce on top, one thats a smoother consistency

                                  I'll be sticking to a 3-cheese pizza here next time, these toppings "under" the cheese and sauce just aren't doing it for me


                                  1. re: duckdown

                                    Sorry everything wasn't as good as you hoped. It certainly was for us, but as the saying goes "de gustibus non est disputandum". He really seemed like an accessible guy to us, and he might be willing to change things on future orders for you, though of course, I can't speak for him.



                            2. re: magic

                              I asked for my pepperoni crispy today. Made all the difference. Made a great pizza even better.

                              Also, I give CPK snaps for having probably one of my favourite and most under-the-radar burgers in the city. Holy crap is it good. My second time having a burger there. Had the Patty Melt. Made it a double and they happily obliged. OMG, was it ridiculous.

                              Just a great place to spend a Saturday night. Great vibe. They were packed but still on top of things and super-sweet as ever.


                              1. re: magic

                                On last visit there was a large group of people that were going on about how amazing the burgers were. It seemed like blasphemy to order a burger at a place known for pizza but I've heard too much now! We live downtown so it's a rare treat to make it up there, will have to get a burger for lunch and then a pizza for later.

                                The pizza travels and reheats really well. We've picked up one on the way back from Blue Mountain a couple of times and it was excellent reheated several hours later.

                                1. re: abigllama

                                  Definitely try the burgers. I've only had the patty melts (one of which I made a double!). Just delish. Also, the “Chicago Italian Sausage Burger” is pretty much to die for.

                                  Next time I want to try the Italian Beef (they ran out yesterday sadly).

                            3. re: TexSquared

                              Cool, well thanks for the background. But in fact there are other ways you could approach the situation..

                              My buddy worked at a pizza store for a little while, and one day when he forgot to put pepperoni on my pizza, he just threw the sliced pepperoni onto a sheet of parchment and into the pizza oven for a minute. they rendered down and got good and crispy and it worked perfectly... I think even doing that extra step before inserting them into the pie would be a good thing, that way when they heat up they're not oozing all the grease into the pizza

                              1. re: duckdown

                                Hey duckdown, if you've ever had a pepperoni panzarotto, it's the same deal. I have no problem with that, so I can't imagine it's going to be much different in these deep dish pizzas. By the way, did you watch the video on the CPK website, of constructing one of those bad boys? The sandwich is also the subject of a video. Food porn.

                                1. re: Yongeman

                                  Thats actually the reason I don't get pepperoni in my panzarotto unfortunately :(

                                  I think I saw the video before yeah :) I think I'll just go with a 3 cheese pizza or sausage


                                  1. re: duckdown

                                    I am always careful about who I order pepperoni from, only because I feel it MUST be on the outside of the pizza so it gets crispy. I also don't like it in panzerotto for this reason.

                                    1. re: hungryabbey

                                      Finally, someone that agrees: Rubbery pepperoni's suck!

                                      Gotta prepare them on the outside of the pizza, couldn't agree more. And they totally ruin a panzerotti by oozing pepperoni grease into them.. I don't know why more places haven't caught on about crisping the pepperoni's BEFORE inserting them..


                                      1. re: duckdown

                                        duck, have you tried Pizzaiolo on Jane/Bloor?

                            4. re: duckdown

                              That's really specific to the style of pizza. Your toppings will be surrounded in cheese that's under a layer of sauce. If crispy curled peperoni is what you love about pizza, Chicago deep dish stuffed probably isn't going to work for you.

                              Meats that aren't going to grease out are usually a safe bet. Meatball is always a fave of mine since it's pre-cooked and cuts down on the grease factor.

                            5. perfect, here i am sitting here trying to think what to ahve for dinner.

                              I will however make the drive up from downtown since I don't mind going for a drive....