Chicagoland is known for its deep dish and stuffed pizza. But man cannot live on deep dish alone. So for days when you crave something a little different, there are some thin crust places that are still worthy of being called Chicago style pizza. One such place is "Barnaby's," an English Pub type place that's been around since 1968.
Inside, the first thing you'll notice is that there are no windows. That means this is quite possibly the darkest restaurant you'll ever encounter. When you step back outside you feel like your eyes have been dilated! Nevertheless, the atmosphere is relaxed, comfortable, and family friendly.
There's no frills with the ordering process. Simply walk up to the counter and let them know what strikes your fancy, then park yourself in one of the wooden booths and wait for your number to be called.
A recent visit started off with mozzarella sticks and garlic bread, and lead to a half slab of ribs, half-pound pub burger and a large pepperoni pizza. The garlic bread and mozzarella sticks came out first, and were a mixed bag. The mozzarella sticks were served piping hot and encased in a wonderful crunchy coating that didn't fall apart the minute you bite into them. The "garlic" bread on the other hand should be sued for false advertising. Why? Because there was no garlic flavor! A more apt description would be buttered toast.
Then came the burger, a half pound of juicy beef nestled on a warm buttery bun. The toppings were fresh and the bun was soft and warm, but the meat was a little bland. A dash of salt and pepper would have kicked this burger up a notch. The ribs were next, and they were a nice surprise. The ribs were fall off the bone tender and slathered in a peppery barbeque sauce. That being said, the pizza turned out to be the main attraction here ,and it didn't disappoint. When it comes to pizza -- deep dish or thin -- the crust is king. Unlike many thin pizzas where the crust is floppy, this one was sturdy, crunchy, and delicious. The slightly thicker crust was dusted with cornmeal, the perfect vehicle to hold the high quality toppings.
The final bill, including pitchers of pop, was about $45, which makes Barnaby's a steal when you combine that good price with good food and a relaxed atmosphere.
Click here for information on Barnaby's many Chicagoland locations.