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Benedetto's On Main Street:  The cheesiest bite!

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Itz'A Pizza Pie!

Grab Some Napkins And Make A List -- October Is National Pizza Month

When the moon hits your eye, 
Like a big pizza pie, that's amore
... in The Lou

Amore is the Italian word for “love." Pizza reportedly was first called pie when Italian immigrants arrived in the United States in the late 1800s. Pizza had similarities to a pie – with a crust, sliced triangle portions and its circular shape. Italian-Americans sold and popularized pizzas, and the exotic dish picked up the English name “tomato pie.” Sometime thereafter, languages met in the middle with the term “pizza pie."

St. Louisans historically put their own spin on pizzas by introducing thin crust and Provel, a white processed cheese product that's a combination of cheddar, Swiss and provolone cheeses. It's considered a formulated product, like Velveeta. Provel has a low melting point, giving pizza toppings their scintillating, gooey texture. 

Ever try to explain thin-crusted pizza with Provel cheese to people not from the St. Louis region? They ask:  “So…it’s like a cracker with Cheese Whiz on it? Or a big pizza-flavored nacho?” Other people notice how the unleavened crust makes it very crunchy and not pliable. Because of this, a St. Louis-style pizza is often cut “tavern style” into rectangles. Provel seems nearly impossible to find it anywhere else in the country. In fact, if the cheese is manufactured anywhere outside of St. Louis, it reportedly isn’t considered Provel and has to be labeled as “St. Louis-Style Cheese.”

Fun Fact:  The recipe for Provel is believed to have been concocted in 1947 when owners of the St. Louis Costa Grocery (now Roma Grocery, located on the Hill) decided they didn’t like how stringy mozzarella was after taking a bite of pizza. 

Whether one's favorite pizza crust is thin, hand-tossed, medium, thick, stuffed, gluten-free, vegan-friendly or flatbread, every person has their own unique definition of the perfect pizza crust. Crusts actually decide the essential makeup of pizzas, as every style of pizza ultimately begins from the bottom up, but they don't usually get as much love as toppings. 

Some area pizzas to try during National Pizza Month:

  • Restaurateur Vito Chirco opened Chirco’s Pizza in Chesterfield next to the shopping plaza that was once home to Chirco’s Italian Restaurant. The new pizzeria is located at 14870 Clayton, the space that previously housed Pi 2 Go. They serve hand-tossed and gourmet pizzas. 
  • Bacon Potato Pizza, Maple Bourbon Pork Pizza and calzones are top of mind at Clayton-located Peel Wood Fired Pizza, 208 S. Meramec Ave.

  • The Stef’s Pizza team at 103 Chesterfield Towne Center offer signature pizzas, such as taco, Hawaiian, vegetable and BBQ chicken, along with typical meat lovers varieties.

  • The Haus Pizzeria And Bar at 14815 Clayton Road serves up oven-baked pizzas, crafted with housemade ingredients. Each month, they also try to offer a new and different specialty pizza, such as Margarita Lobster.

  • Build-you-own pizza at MOD Pizza, 8855K Ladue Road.

  • Shroom, Capriocciosa and Quattro Formaggi pizzas can be secured at Vito's In The Valley, 138 Chesterfield Towne Centre.

  • Benedetto's On Main staffers at 16721 Main St., in Wildwood make their pizza dough fresh daily. Inquire about their Classic Margherita, Grovers Chicken or Meatball On Main pizzas. 

  • Benedetto's On Main Street:  The cheesiest bite!
  • Chirco’s Pizza
  • Chirco’s Pizza
  • Stef’s Pizza
  • Stef’s Pizza
  • The Haus
  • Vito's In The Valley