Food

Where to Find Delicious Chicago-Style Eats Around DC

Where to Find Delicious Chicago-Style Eats Around DC
Deep-dish classico pizza at Pi Pizzeria, which serves Chicago-style pies. Photograph by Scott Suchman
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The Cubs buried the curse, and clinched the 2016 World Series. The wait for victory was long—108 years, to be exact—as was the game. Now we’re hungry for Italian beef, deep-dish pizza, and other Windy City specialties. Here’s where to find them.

Hot Chicago-style sandwiches at Riccordino’s

8369 West Main St., Marhsall, Virginia washingtonian-recommends

The small town of Marshall, Virginia is a food lover’s destination these days, with great options like Red Truck Bakery and the newly-opened Field & Main. The latter operates a Chicago-style sandwich shop that’s worth a drive in itself, and in honor of the Cubs, they’re giving away free Vienna beef dogs with all the fixings until 5 p.m. on Thursday. Other great options include Italian beef dipped in au jus, homemade sausage and peppers, and tomato-sauced meatball subs–all made with local meats. Note: seating is all outdoors, so call ahead if the weather is iffy.

Deep-dish pies at Pi Pizzeria

7137 Wisconsin Ave., Bethesda

Sure, this chain is based in Missouri, but they serve the kind of deep-dish pies that Chicagoans crave (also: thin, St. Louis-style pizzas). The crust stays crunchy thanks to a light layer of cornmeal—the perfect vehicle for super-chunky tomato sauce, mozzarella, and hearty toppings like sausage, green peppers, mushrooms, and onion.

Chicago dogs (and so much more) at Windy City Red Hots

28 South King St., Leesburg; 20052 Lexington Dr., Ashburn (mobile operation)

Snappy Chicago dogs are a trademark at these eateries from Windy City native Angel Miranda. What started as an Ashburn food truck has grown into a brick-and-mortar space in Leesburg with various dogs (chili-cheese, Polish), pizza puffs, and a killer Italian combo sandwich with beef, sausage, and spicy giardiniera. Look for a new Frederick, Maryland location soon.

Plaka Grill Cheap Eats 2016
The house special gyro at Plaka Grill. Photograph courtesy of Plaka

Delicious gyros at Plaka Grill

110 Lawyers Rd., NW, Vienna

Chicagoans know their gyros, and this counter-order Greek spot dishes up the best in Washington. Traditionalists can opt for the “Chicago Gyro,” a classic with piles of beef and lamb, lettuce, tomato, onion, and tzatziki. We’re partial to the house special, where marinated pork shoulder is stacked on a spit that spins slowly for hours. Not only is the tender meat sublime, but so are the accompaniments: tzatziki, crunchy red onions, and a handful of crispy fries.

Flaming saganaki at Cava Mezze

527 Eighth St., SE; 2940 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington; 9713 Traville Gateway Dr., Rockville

Flaming saganaki was invented in Chicago, and this local Greek chainlet serves a delicious version of the table-side cheese flambée. A block of kefalograviera is doused in brandy, ignited, and served bubbling hot in a cast-iron skillet. No need for pita—crisped edges are better than any bread. 

Deep dish dogs at Ivy and Coney

1537 Seventh St., NW

This neighborhood bar splits its loyalties between Chicago and Detroit—hometowns of the owners—so you’ll find tasty eats from both cities. Try the Italian beef sandwich three different ways (we’re fans of the extra-juicy “dipped” in au jus), or the deep dish dog—a combo of the two classic dishes that’s as indulgent as it sounds.

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Anna Spiegel
Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.