Gino's North [GoogleMaps]
1111 W. Granville Ave.
Chicago, IL 60660
CPC invaded Gino's North on 4/28/09.
Review submitted by Amanda
Gino's North is an Edgewater institution that does not look like much from the outside. The establishment has existed since the 1930s or 40s, but was a bar known as the "Snowdrop" back in those days. For years the bar existed as an Edgewater dive popular with locals. It's not clear when pizza became a feature, but around 30 years ago a woman named Peggy started working there and become known for her crust, lovingly featured on the restaurant's website as "Peggy's Famous Homemade Crust." The previous owners renamed the restaurant "Gino's North," and it is allegedly unconnected to the more famous "Gino's East." About three years ago the current owners bought the restaurant and invested in the interior, which features several half-moon booths and a long art deco style bar with a statue in the middle. Gino's North is not ideal for large groups, as CPC discovered when our gang of fourteen trickled in and waited for tables.
Because the restaurant is not set up in a way to accomodate large groups, we split into three tables and each table got to choose the toppings. Gino's North features deep dish and thin crust pies, each with Peggy's dough. My table ordered one deep dish with sausage, and one thin crust with pepperoni, artichoke, and sun-dried tomatoes. (I got a lot of ribbing for that last combination, but I was only trying to be creative). Our pizzas took over a half hour, perhaps even forty minutes before they came out. The Bulls/Celtics game provided some distraction, and we were concerned when a table that had ordered before us got there pizzas first. However, our pizzas arrived not long after that.
The deep dish arrived first. The deep dish is not like a traditional Chicago deep dish pizza. In my (albeit limited) experience, a real deep dish pizza has a thicker crust. This deep dish is almost like a pan pizza, but a very deep pan. Peggy deserves her local renown for the crust. Although the lighting was dark, we could tell the crust had a golden yellow hue indicative of corn flour, and perhaps olive oil. The crust was solid, with a nice crisp on the outer edges. Also noteworthy was the sauce, which was not very sweet, and nicely spiced. The distribution of sausage of evenly balanced, but not overpowering.
The thin crust was experimental in toppings. Artichokes, sun-dried tomatoes, and pepperonies, admittedly, do not go together intuitively. However, I liked it. They are all strong flavors, and there was something about the pepperoni that was really delightful -- it was almost like a salami. Like the deep dish, the thin crust had great flavor, and although I would have liked to see a little bit more of char to the edge, there was still a good crunch around the edges.
Overall, it's definitely worth a trip to Edgewater to try the pizza at Gino's North. If you see Peggy, a petite blonde in the back who looks like she knows what she's doing, tell her the CPC says, "Hey."
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Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Gino's North [GoogleMaps]