From its humble origins as a soda fountain in 1930s Saint Paul, Green Mill Restaurant and Bar has grown into a franchise with more than 28 locations all over Minnesota and the Midwest. As TV screens blast sports news in the background, patrons at each eatery dine on a menu of classic American and pizzeria fare. Thick, hand-pressed burgers form bunned towers with hefty toppings such as smoked bacon, haystack onions, and chipotle mayo. Families looking to bond can practice fractions on regular, deep-dish, or thin and crispy pizzas or group juggling acts with samplers of 27 juicy wings. In addition to pastas and salads, each location's bar carries a varied drink menu that includes draft beers such as Blue Moon and Samuel Adams alongside wine, martinis, and margaritas.
It started with a single store, opened in Fridley, Minnesota in 1964. But Dick Kempe's pizza proved too tasty for one outpost, and Chanticlear Pizza eventually spread to 14 locations in the following years. And although Dick no longer owns the pizzerias, his uncompromising standards for quality pies remain in place. Fresh dough is mixed up and hand-tossed daily. Vegetables are chopped each morning. Instead of adding sugar to their sauce, the chefs rely on the tomatoes' natural, charm school-perfected sweetness. And the from-scratch foundation is always topped with house-shredded, 100% Wisconsin mozzarella cheese.
Once the dough and sauce are ready, Chanticlear Pizza's chefs continue the process by loading them with meats and veggies. The selection of toppings range from shrimp and bacon pieces to a secret-recipe pickle blend. A splash of spicy, bourbon-tinged molasses or chunky salsa can add additional pizzazz to pizzas. Beyond circular eats, polygonal dishes as pastas, calzones, and sides of buffalo wings and garlic toast populate the menu.
The pizza experts of Linwood Pizza craft dough by hand every day to ensure a delicious canvas on which they can slather housemade sauce and fresh toppings. Their thin-crust pies bubble with gooey cheese that supports an abundance of signature pizza toppings. The Linwood Legend, for example, mixes sausage, pepperoni, and canadian bacon with mushrooms and olives. The taco pizza hoists hamburger meat and chips, and pairs taco sauce made from the tears of tacos with cool sour cream. See their full menu here.
Some people try to give their pizza a little kick by dousing it in red pepper flakes or hot sauce. When they order from Majestic Pizza, they can skip that extra step by ordering their pie with spicy sauce. Every day, the kitchen staff makes this spicier marinara sauce in addition to its milder iteration, as well as hand-kneaded pizza dough, ensuring a freshness that tastes better than astronaut dough. Pizzas get topped with traditional topping such as sausage and mushrooms, or gourmet ingredients such as white sauce and spinach. Chicago-style pizzas fit twice the toppings between two layers of dough.