Giordanos Pizza – Gurnee, IL
After an exhausting day at the water park at Key Lime Cove, my brother brought up the idea of ordering a pizza. Now, I know I’m usually the type of guy that will scout out a local place to order from, but when I searched for pizza, one of my Chicago favorites came up.
The Gurnee location of Giordanos Pizza is in a strip mall on Grand Avenue a few miles from the resort we were staying at. My brother had called in the order, but he and I decided to go pick it up instead of having it delivered.
We were told the pizzas would take about a half hour and we pulled in to the parking lot at almost exactly a half hour after the order was placed. Most of the Giordanos I’ve been to have been stand alone buildings. This is actually the first one I’ve been to that has been in a shopping center.
The decor was similar to the others with dark wood furniture and Chicago themed posters on the wall. We walked passed the hostess station to the back of the dining room where the cash register was. The waiter who noticed us there said there was a few more minutes so we headed over to the bar. The bartender saw us there and came over to see if we wanted drinks, but we passed hoping it would only be a few more minutes.
Five minutes after we sat down, two boxes came out through the window and a manager walked them over to us. The total for two pizzas, a deep dish with sausage and a thin crust with sausage on half and plain cheese on the other was a little over $35. We were both expecting it to be more.
We headed back to the hotel where the family was waiting for us. There was a little lobby area near our rooms and we kind of took that over for dinner and the opening of Christmas presents. The unfortunate thing was that we didn’t have any plates, napkins or utensils. J told me to ask at the restaurant, but I forgot. My brother ended up going downstairs to the pizza place in the resort and asking them without telling them why we needed them. He got what we needed and we dug in.
Giordanos is a little different from it’s competitors in the Chicago pizza scene. They do a stuffed pizza which adds a top crust, more sauce and more cheese. They use the same basic formula for a Chicago pizza with a very fat heavy, buttery crust, and a cold tomato sauce. .
I completely botched the order when it came to J. She’s usually a fan of thin crust, so I ordered the deep dish with sausage. I didn’t realize she even liked the deep dish and she doesn’t like sausage at all. I kinda screwed that one up. I should have gotten a small cheese deep dish for her and I, but I pulled the top crust off enough to get to the large chunks of sausage so I could take them off and she could still enjoy the deep dish with us.
The thin crust was a little surprising to me. It was actually really good. I would really never order thin crust for myself because if I’m in Chicago, I’m going to get the pizza that no one else seems to be able to replicate. The thin crust was very well done and very crispy. It was almost as good as the deep dish and if it was from any place other than Giordano’s, it would be a pizza that I would happily order over and over again.
Once again, Giordano’s delivered that incredible buttery, flaky crust and cold, chunky tomato sauce that I can’t seem to get outside of Illinois.