The only thing Chicagoans take more pride in than the legacy of Michael Jordan and the Bulls' six-peat is their pizza. But with so many Chicago pizzerias claiming to serve the best Chicago-style deep dish pizza, trying to pick one can feel like trying to hit a game-winning jump shot at the buzzer. Sure, sticking with all-stars like Giordano's and Pizzeria Uno is a safe bet, but sometimes taking a chance on an unknown like Pizzeria Ora can lead to a Cinderella story of dinners.
OK, that basketball metaphor went a little far. In any event, Pizzeria Ora serves delicious deep dishes and thin crusts with fresh mozzarella, buttery crust and a thick tomato sauce that will make your Italian grandmother weep. The plain cheese and supreme pizzas will please even the pickiest eater, but if you're a little more adventurous, order the marina, topped with scallops, shrimp, squid, tomato, basil, cilantro and olive oil. Or if you're looking for a non-pizza option, try the Mediterranean salad (greens, roasted red peppers, feta, black olives, and shrimp tossed in spicy Balsamic vinaigrette, $7.95) or chicken cacciatora (chicken breast smothered in red sauce, served with wild rice and veggies, $11.95).
If you're not hungry, grab a stool at the amply sized bar, and enjoy $3.50 bottles of Bud, Rolling Rock and Goose Island as well as $5.50 glasses of wine, and a front-row seat to watch the Bulls.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: Amanda Nyren