Pizza Friendly Pizza - Chicago
Noah Sandoval, chef at Kumiko/Kikko and Oriole, a Michelin two-star restaurant, has teamed up with Bruce Finkelman of 16” on Center, which manages bar/restaurants like Longman & Eagle and Thalia Hall, to bring Chicago Pizza Friendly Pizza.
Pizza Friendly Pizza is an outdoor/takeout dining concept that centers on the excellent Sicilian pizza turned out by Chef Sandoval. Sicilian pizza is different from either Chicago deep dish or thin crust tavern-style varieties in that the crust is airy and flavorful, kind of like an English muffin, and the toppings are infinitely variable.
The menu at Pizza Friendly Pizza is changing constantly. Pizza Friendly Pizza is basically a slice joint where you go to get a few slices of pie, but you can order whole pies ahead of time. As of this writing, there are four pizzas and two sandwiches offered.
Currently, the slices include Pepperoni and Basil (Ezzo’s pepperoni, burrata, and basil), Rapini and Lemon (agrumato and smoked black pepper), Supreme (soppressata, Castelvetrano olives, maitake mushrooms and Calabrian chili oil relish), and Ruben’s Special (fennel sausage, giardiniera, and provolone).
Pizzas can be prepared vegan, upon request.
Slices are currently just $4.50, which is a small price to pay for food prepared by a Michelin chef.
According to food journalist and 14-time James Beard award winner Steve Dolinsky, “I’ve tasted both the pepperoni and the mushroom, and as delicious as they both are, the experience of eating them is as much textural as anything else. The squares look hefty, but when you lift them, they are as light as an iPhone 4; biting into them – revealing that tight crumb – you experience not only the top-notch ingredients Sandoval has sourced, but the interplay between sweet and heat, crunch and chew, crisp and soft. The undercarriage is textbook: as golden as a McDonald’s French fry, riddled with craters as if you’re looking at the moon through a telescope. It’s the best Sicilian slice in Chicago, full stop.”
There are also sandwiches and salads; to drink, there's beer, Fernet shots, and a spirit-free cocktail from Julia Momose of Kumiko/Kikko.