Tuesday, June 19, 2012

food (food) | roots pizza

Have you ever heard of Quad Cities Style pizza?  Yup, until a few months ago neither had I, but it's become one of my faves.  Definitely doesn't trump the good ol' New York slice, but it's good pizza...for the Midwest.  Our friends who are originally from the Quad Cities introduced us to this style of pizza a few months ago when Roots Pizza opened up shop in the Ukrainian Village/West Town neighborhood.  Owned by the same geniuses behind The Fifty/50 and Bleeding Heart Bakery, this pizza joint is a great addition to their repertoire.

So what exactly makes Quad Cities Style pizza different?  It's all in the crust - as it should be.  One key ingredient in the crust is malt that makes it a little sweet, a little doughy, but a lot crispy - which is just the way I like it.  The slices at Roots Pizza are big enough to paw with your hands, but never weighed down by all the toppings so don't worry about having to eat it with a fork and knife, unless you really wanted to.  Needless to say it's good pizza.




Since Saturday night has become our night of eating pizza, Matt and I headed to Roots to see if it was as good as we remembered the first time.  The pizzas come in 2 sizes, 12" and 16".  In true Matt fashion, he ordered an entire 16" pizza for himself topped with sausage crumbles, pepperoni, jalepeno and onion.  Yup, that's right the average size pizza for Matt alone is the size that normally feeds a family of 5.  Luckily I was able to grab a slice of it and enjoy the sweet taste of the Roots crust that re-confirmed that the pizza is pretty tasty.



This time I opted to order one of the salads that were part of their daily specials.  The last time we were at Roots I was tempted to go with a salad because they have so many great options as part of their "Build Your Own" menu, but it was my first time and had to try the pizza.  So this time I opted for the Grilled Shrimp and Calamari Italian salad and it was absolutely delicious.  Topped with a good portion of seafood, the salad had a great mix of romaine, red leaf cabbage, asparagus, tomatoes, crispy shallots, mozarella pickled onions and carrots - all topped with a creamy italian dressing.  It's so good that I hope they made that salad a regular on their normal menu.



With every good though, there is a bad.  For an establishment that is so family friendly (you'll find tons of kids in this pizza joint/bar like place), the music is so loud that it almost makes the volume at Abercrombie & Fitch seem like it's on mute.  I understand that this restaurant must be bumpin' closer to the late evenings, after all there is a very well stocked bar, but if it's before 10pm does the music have to be at a volume where you can't have an enjoyable conversation with the person you're with?  It's a small detail, but one that could be fixed quite easily.

Despite the music volume level though, , we'll return to Roots Pizza again.  The food is good enough to keep us coming back and it's one of the better pizza places we've found in Chicago that is actually  worth writing about.  If you ever decide to try Roots Pizza, I recommend ordering a side of extra pizza sauce with your pizza.  It's got just the right amount of spiciness to it that makes me want to dip everything in it.


Mel said...

"The music is so loud that it almost makes the volume at Abercrombie & Fitch seem like it's on mute." - That made me laugh.

Funny, I blogged about pizza today too.

My co-worker and her husband go to Roots almost every weekend. I've really got to get there! Thanks for the review.

lizzie said...

oh hurray! I just moved to Chicago and I am determined to find the best pizza! Thanks for the suggestion :)

xo, lizzie