One Chicagoan’s perspective: Jon Stewart pizza rant

When I get stressed, I go down a YouTube rabbit hole. 

The last time I became Alice from “Alice in Wonderland” was after Boston University’s College of Communication Undergraduate Affairs emailed students the Spring 2022 semester planner, which came as a surprise since I feel like this semester is only two days old.

Avoiding that situation, I went into procrastination-denial mode. 

I can’t tell you where it began, but it ended with a video on Jon Stewart’s rant about deep-dish pizza. 

Honestly, the YouTube algorithm is a beautiful, creepy thing. It gives me random videos that I haven’t seen in years all the time.

Personally — as a person from Chicago — I’m offended. Yet as a fan of Stewart and a lover of random rants, I’m equally entertained, especially by the increasingly thick New York accent Stewart has throughout the rant.

deep dish pizza
A deep-dish pizza. Thalia shares her perspective on Chicago-style deep dish pizza and compares it to the notable New York style. COURTESY OF TED BARRERA VIA FLICKR

Plus, he’s not completely wrong. 

Deep dish pizza is really strange, and you have a potential risk of drowning in it if you happen to pass out on its top. But his statement of “it’s not pizza” is simply wrong. 

Deep-dish is pizza. It has all the essential ingredients of marinara, cheese and bread, and it is a circle. 

It’s just a little heftier than New York-style pizza. Also, at least a deep-dish slice isn’t the size of my forearm like New York pizza can be.

However, I understand that deep dish can be an acquired taste with all its iron-pan-cooked crust, cheese and “uncooked marinara sauce atop.” I didn’t like deep-dish pizza until I was in middle school. At first, I only enjoyed eating the thick crust with a bit of marinara sauce, but I grew to love it completely.

Despite what Stewart comically said, deep-dish pizza is amazing and can be much better than a New York slice, especially when you’re looking for something substantial and not just a pool of grease. 

Giordano’s, a pizzeria chain that focuses on Chicago-style pizza, deep dish pizza beats any fast food New York-style slice. Giordano’s pizzas are a consistent, crispy, balanced goodness. You can’t go wrong.

It’s one of the only things I miss from home. Unfortunately, Giordano’s is a prominent chain in the Midwest, and there are no locations in the Northeast. 

Sadly, all we have is Domino’s, which is terrible pizza. Heinous. Abhorrent. Detestable.

Its pizza tears in half when you try to take a piece out because it wasn’t cut correctly. The crust is like cardboard. The sauce is completely overtaken by the cheese. 

While I’ll admit that the garlic knots are worth buying and I’ve heard that their lava cakes are fantastic, the pizza isn’t what I’m looking for. 

So there’s way worse pizza to rant about in my opinion. 

Detroit-style pizza? That’s not pizza. It’s toast that you happen to put marinara on. It is a point of fact that no pizza should be a rectangle or square or be cut in any way that’s not a triangle. It’s unnatural.

You don’t get the full experience of pizza-eating if it’s cut into segments that are either crust pieces or inside pieces. It’s like getting a corner piece of brownie or the middle. You shouldn’t have to choose between crispy crust or gooey cheese, though. If you cut every pizza into triangles, you always get the best of both worlds.

I know the reason to cut a pizza into squares is to share between more people, but that still doesn’t work well. People have to take more rectangular-shaped slices to equal one triangular slice and feel full.

There is no world that anything other than triangle cut pizza makes sense, and I will stand by that statement. 

Chicago and New York styles — both good triangle-cut pizza in their own right — should unite against Detroit-style pizza.

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