I’ve always thought Nick Nitti had a way with dough. Ever since he opened Forno Rosso in the Dunning neighborhood, on the city’s far West Side, he’s been consistently cranking out some of the best Neapolitan pies in the region. He is somewhat of an evangelist on the merits of fior di latte, San Marzanos and long fermentation. His latest store, in the West Loop, is finally open, and while the wood-burning oven still works extra hard, it’s the panuozzos that attracted my gaze from the start. Shaped into long, slender ovals, they are, in essence, sandwiches. But they use the same great dough that is used for pizzas; the exception being the dough is first baked naked, then slit along the side and opened along the equator, all the better to load it up with the same top-quality ingredients he uses for his pizzas. No question, get the pizza while you’re there, but don’t overlook the panuozzos (there are about a half dozen to choose from). They’re something you should eat.
Forno Rosso Pizzeria Napoletana
1048 W. Randolph St.; 312-243-6000