Pizza in Elmwood Park

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When childhood pals Michael Caringella and Armand Christopher bought Elmwood Park's Victory Tap in 1956, one of their first orders of business was determining the name of their new establishment. Michael won the deciding coin toss, but to dodge any complaints that might arise, slyly chose to dub their eatery Armand’s Victory Tap, after his coin-toss-losing partner. With Armand’s original artwork gracing the walls and Michael’s thin-crust pizza flying from the oven, the restaurant received positive reviews; and although Armand sold his portion to Mike in the 1960s, the eatery—since renamed Armand's Pizzeria—still thrives today.

City-dwellers and suburbanites alike can taste a slice of the original thin-crust pie at any of Armand's 10 locations. Though menus differ slightly at each eatery, all contain thin- or pan-crust pizzas crowned with an array of fresh toppings, ranging from ham, bacon, and pineapple to feta and kalamata olives to italian beef and spicy giardiniera. Beyond pizza, the chefs pull mozzarella mostaccioli from the oven, glaze baby back ribs with tangy barbecue sauce, and assemble hearty sandwiches from italian beef and italian sausage, the same materials that used to line the deli counter at the Roman coliseum.

7650 W North Ave
Elmwood Park,
IL
US

Plenty has changed at Jim & Pete's since the family-owned eatery’s opening in 1941, but one thing has remained constant: the recipes. Along with a few updates and one robot line cook, chefs still depend on those time-tested formulas to craft an array of signature chicken dishes, risotto specials, and fish entrees. The restaurant also offers 20 types of pasta and 13 special sauces, including besciamella and string bean. Those combinations can be customized, as can unions between five kinds of pizza crust and 20 toppings such as sausage, anchovies, and red peppers.

Imported and domestic bottles of sparkling, white, or red wine complement meals, which unfold in a brick-walled dining room decorated with wine racks. In addition to dine-in feasts, Jim & Pete's cuisine is available for carry-out, catering, and banquets.

7806 W North Ave.
Elmwood Park,
IL
US

The chefs at Spizzico Pizza and Pasta have pizza making down to a science, cooking their famous Chicago-style deep-dish pizzas for precisely 45 minutes and only shortening the baking time by special request. Patience pays off at this pizza joint, where stuffed pizzas bake until the outside browns lightly and the cheese inside is warm and gooey, and veggie pies come adorned with such savory toppings as fresh garlic, ricotta, and artichoke hearts.

If pizza isn't your thing, though, there are plenty of other items on the menu, including a four-cheese lasagna, and linguine tossed with calamari in a homemade sauce. In addition, more than a dozen tossed salads offer fresh, flavorful alternatives or places to hide the last slice of garlic bread.

7446 W North Ave.
Elmwood Park,
IL
US

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