In The News
Chicago's Essential Tavern-Style Thin-Crust Pizza Restaurants
Is tavern-style pizza falling into the same category as deep dish? In recent years, Chicagoans have raged that deep-dish pizza isn't what real locals eat. The infatuation with stuffed, deep dish, pan, etc. comes from clever marketing and outside media who fumble when trying to pigeonhole the biggest city in the Midwest.
It's impossible to miss the big neon sign on Western Avenue just south of Evanston that is always wishing someone a happy birthday or anniversary. Established in 1950 by Italian immigrants, Candlelite Chicago was once a dark, dingy dive bar that somehow also doubled as a romantic destination for a couple's night out.
SINCE 1950, THIS PIZZERIA AND TAVERN HAS BECOME A FAMILIAR LANDMARK IN THE WINDY CITY—AND IT'S NOW SELLING MORE PIZZA THAN EVER DURING THE PANDEMIC.
Italian immigrants Frank and Lena Maiale, the original owners of Candlelite Chicago, opened the doors of their tavern-style pizzeria in 1950, serving up thin-crust pies and libations to neighborhood locals.
The neon sign will grab you first, especially at night, when it shines like a welcoming beacon on an otherwise drab stretch of Western Avenue near Evanston: the endearing spelling of its name (Candlelite), the martini glass (with olive), the space in which to announce birthdays, anniversaries and other personal celebrations and events.