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Help! Lou Malnati's or Giordano's?

I will be in Chicago in March. I have never eaten Chicago deep dish pizza before. Which place is better? I realize that Giordano's is more of a stuffed pizza, i don't really care. I want the place with the most flavor.

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  1. Uno's is my choice....the orignal of course, however, when I was home over the holidays, we had both Lou's and Giordano's. I thought the Lou's was better. -mJ

    1. I'd vote Lou's if I had to choose between the two.

      1. You are unlikely to get a concenesus. Both have their fans. If it were me, I'd do Uno's or Due's (the original is still the greatest) and, if that's not possible, Malnati's which is a close second.

        1 Reply
        1. re: chicgail

          Definitely agree with that one - Uno really blows all the other deep dish out of the water.

          If you had to choose, I'd go with Malnati's. Giordano's really isn't very good IMHO.

          1. I like both too! I like Giordano's slightly better, but I alternate between the two because I like both. However, if you've never had Chicago deep-dish pizza before, then the single-crust pizza may be a better choice - in which case I agree with chicgail's advice that the original Uno or Due are the place to go (assuming you're staying nearby), but Malnati's is also excellent and a very close (and similar) second.

            1. Chicago pizza has a very limited gene pool. Lou Malnati was the son of one of Uno's/Due's owners and worked there before opening his own place. Another son later opened Pizano's (now a small chain).

              Giordano' s then begat Bacino's and Eduardo's (both had franchise relationships with Giordano's that went south).

              As far as the stuffed Giordano's line of pizzas goes, I don't find much difference between the 3 mentioned above. I gravitated to stuffed a lot more in my youth. As I got older i developed a preference for the Malnati's deep-dish style (although I had plenty of Malnati's as a kid, it was my neighborhood pizza place).

              1. If I had to pick between those two... Lou's absolutely...

                1 Reply
                1. I believe Giordano's has a higher cheese to crust ratio. If you like more cheese, you'll like Giordano's. I think Lou's is better personally because I'm more of a crust guy. I prefer Gino's, because they have the best crust in my opinion, it's more of a corn meal crust.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Shaggy

                    I'm more of a crust guy, and I like Giordano's better - particularly for its delicious edge crust. But I like Malnati's too.

                    The crust of Gino's East pizza has a characteristic yellow color. I don't know about the ingredients in the pizza you buy at the restaurant, but their ones sold in the freezer at the supermarket have no corn meal in them; the yellow in the crust comes from food coloring (FD&C yellow #5 and yellow #6).

                  2. Of all the places mentioned in this thread, Lou's is my recommendation.

                    1. Lou Malnati's.
                      Seasoning and crust make this a very flavorful pie.

                      1. Thanks for the advice! Can't wait to eat my first slice of Chicago deep dish!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jbrunenn

                          You're in for a real treat! If there is one thing I miss about home other than Vienna Beef hot dogs, it is authentic Chicago deep dish! As I said above, Uno's is my go to, then Due, then Lou's, and finally Giordono's. Regardless, I would kill to have any of them out here on the East Coast, but thankfully we get back to Chicago a few times a month now to enjoy the restaurants I enjoyed when Chicago was still home. Enjoy the pie! -mJ

                        2. My vote would be for Lou Malnati's. Their sausage deep dish rules! If you do go there, get your pizza with "buttercrust." It's .75 cents extra, but totally worth it, in my opinion.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: Scylla

                            I generally enjoy foods with a butter taste, but after trying both, I prefer Lou's regular crust to their butter crust.

                            If you're ordering more than one pizza, you can get one with butter crust and one with regular crust, and decide for yourself...

                          2. Lou Malnati's and Giordano's make very different pies.

                            Lou Malnati;'s does a deep-dish style pizza. Honestly, I think it is the worst of the big three (Uno/Due, Gino's East, Lou Malnati's). Lou's crust is a way too greasy for my taste. It is a VERY successful chain, so they are doing something right, I suppose. My recommendation is to go to Uno/Due first and then head to Gino's down the street if the wait at Uno/Due is out of control.

                            But my real love is stuffed pizza, and Giordano's is the first and best. Started going there when they opened their first joint on 63rd and California (one of the brothers had his stereo propped up in a corner for tunes, and you had to buy beverages at the liquor store on the corner). That location, is gone and they have franchised, but gosh their pizza is good. Nancy's (NW Side) and Connie's (SW Side) are also really good.

                            If a Chicago-style pizza newbie, do know these are definitely meals, and not snacks. Also know that many great pizza styles are well-represented in Chicago, and many of those pies are best-in-class.