Sunday evening, Old Style hosted Chicago’s first ever Pizza Summit. It’s amazing that a town with so much pride in their favorite food had yet to organize such an event, but we’re so glad someone did.
The summit was held at the Chop Shop & 1st Ward in Wicker Park and broken into 2 different sessions, 2-5 PM & 6-9. Hungry and eager to get inside was line down North Ave of likeminded, pizza loving individuals. They were lucky to get in on a Pizza Party that sold out in 3 minutes thanks to the efforts Old Style and Do312. The patient crowd was greeted at the door by a man who definitely looked to be in charge, named T.J., and the awesome Chop Shop staff.
Partiers were led toward their destiny for the evening, which would have been appropriate to the sounds of Willy Wonka singing “Pure Imagination“.
Once checked in, you were handed 5 tickets that gave you plenty of Old Style to wash down the feast that was about to ensue…and a pretty cool personal pizza slice plate.
Then it began. Around the room, like a wagon circle of deliciousness, were the fine folks from…
Home Run Inn
And yes, we have a secret #HomeRunInnHandshake that only the cool kids know.
Taco in a Bag
They brought the super innovative “Pizza in a Bag” with them.
Flo & Santos
With a polish sausage pizza that is to die for.
If you go anytime soon, try the veggie pizza with mashed potatoes in it. Trust me.
They kept it simple, and simple was perfect.
The famous family recipe, that we all recall made Jon Stewart chill for a minute.
I tried Mac & Cheese pizza for the first time, and it made me into a believer.
In case you can’t read that description, it says BBQ pizza with five-spiced braised pork belly and Wisconsin cheese curds. Yeah.
I greatly appreciated these cool people for letting me reminisce about growing up on Connie’s going to ballgames in Chicago. I imagine many of you can relate…
You may recall that Boiler Room ranked #1 on my Pizza Challenge list a year ago…
The guys from Boiler Room actually served as the opener for the evening’s keynote speaker, flipping dough way more impressively than i ever could…
Immediately after that last dough throw into the crowd, the Alan Parson’s Project (better known locally as the Chicago Bulls intro music) was cranked to the max in the room!
Yes, capping off the week where he formed the PARTY Party for this year’s election season, Andrew W.K. spoke to pizza loving, party-till-you-puke crowd about what it means to live positively and the kind of joy pizza brings to people everywhere. To sum it up as eloquently as possible, IT WAS COOL AS HELL…I’d rank it ahead of Rocky’s speech after defeating Ivan Drago.
To perfectly wrap up his State of the Pizza Union address, Andrew W.K. led supporters in chant worthy for such an event.
He then met with fans and pizza-lovers alike. Even Snapchat Face-Swapped with my partner in crime for the night, Kristin.
Whose hair looks better? Serious question.
The fun didn’t stop there. Upstairs, the U.S. Pizza Museum debuted its epic collection.
The museum will be at The Chop Shop on April 4th for you to check out, and then you’ll have to find out where they POP UP NEXT by following their Facebook Page. They had some really cool swag that’s very much worth snagging for yourself or that special pizza fan you know and love.
Also upstairs was a sweet little getaway section where bartender extraordinaire Kristen mixed us some Old Fashions to go perfectly with our Old Styles. Serving as a connector between the bar and the rest of the summit was an awesome rooftop patio that was made better by great weather.
Providing excellent tunes, sound and projector GIFs on the wall all evening were the tandem of Kristin and Eric.
Overall, it was a really fun time filled with super nice people, pizza and partying. Looking forward to the next one already. Well done, Old Style Chicago.
Here are some more scenes from the 2016 Pizza Summit.