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Nov 9, 2012 04:45 PM

Chicago-style thin crust pizza in SF, the penninsula, or East Bay?

I've been having difficulty finding the real Chicago-style pizza: the kind people actually eat in Chicago, that has a thin, somewhat crispy crust, a generous layer of sauce, and the toppings underneath the cheese, cut into squares. Not the "deep dish" or "stuffed" kind we used to have only once or twice per year, which is only slightly more "Chicago-style" than chinese checkers is Chinese.

Patxi's makes some bold claims, but it isn't quite right. Not bad, but it isn't it. And the SF location had no idea what I was talking about, when I asked for squares.

I know this can be had outside of Chicagoland. If in Tucson AZ there were two chains and at least as many mom-and-pop joints serving it, there has to be at least one in the Bay Area. Any tips?

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  1. I am no expert on Chicago style pizza, and I have a feeling they don't have what you are asking for..... But if you have not tried Little Star or Blueline you should - it's really good pizza and they offer Chicago inspired styles.

    2 Replies
    1. re: goldangl95

      I lived in the Chicago area for over 30 years and know what you are talking about, but can't imagine why you are searching for it. It is just a basic all- American style pizza with the topping under the cheese, cut it into squares, rather than pie-shaped slices, that make it totally unpleasant to eat. We used to see it at office parties. When we had a a chance we headed for dip dish versions.

      If you are homesick for squares, maybe you could ask Little Star to cut one of their thin versions into squares. If they don't already put the cheese on top as they do for the deep dish, then they might even do that for you.

      Now a good sausage sandwich with giardinera from Portillo's -- that would be worth having here. There is a Portillo's in the LA area (Buena Park).

      1. re: Thomas Nash

        Here's Cynsa's post on Kukar's House of Pizza in San Jose, if cutting into squares is the major criteria.

    2. Capo's is opening this month.

      Then, one that might be worth a call though not in your designated area. Bricks in Petaluma was a branch of Bricks in Chicago.

      I enjoyed it very much some years ago, per this report,

      But when I googled to see its status, apparently it changed names a couple years ago and is now called Brixx. The "about" section of the website no longer mentions Chicago style thin crust. However, maybe a call to find out if the style of pizza is still the same would be fruitful.

      1. Capo's menu lists "cracker-thin" among the styles they're going to offer, you might call and ask for a more detailed description.

        Little Star's specialty is deep-dish. Their thin-crust is good but doesn't match the description.

        Deep-dish is called Chicago-style because that's where it was invented.

        1. Isn't the "Detroit" style pie at Tony's Pizza Napolitana like this?

          1 Reply
          1. re: ernie in berkeley

            No, the Detroit style is on the thick side and it's cooked in a rectangular pan.

          2. I seem to remember La Val's on Euclid used to make a pizza in a half sheet pan that they cut into squares but I haven't had La Val's in years because my kids stopped liking it, evolving taste.

            1 Reply
            1. re: wolfe

              LA Val's called it a "Party Pan"

              It was huge,cheap and was pretty tasty if you ordered with extra sauce and cheese.
              It was about 18 inches by 2 feet and cut into squares.

              I think they stopped making it about 12 years ago.