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Candlelite, the crackliest cracker crust in town

Candlelite, the crackliest cracker crust in town
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  • Post #91 - February 5th, 2010, 10:07 am
    Post #91 - February 5th, 2010, 10:07 am Post #91 - February 5th, 2010, 10:07 am
    I can't speak about the decline or rebirth of this place, having never tried it before, but due to this thread being at the top of the list and me reading it, I went and grabbed a large pepperoni Wednesday night and loved it.

    Cracker-thin crust, really light and crunchy. not overtopped. nice quality pepperoni and cheese. this is a very high quality tavern-style, right up there with Barnaby's and Bill's Pub in Mundelein. I wouldn't rank it as high as either of those (my two faves), but it's a fine substitute for city-dwellers who don't want to drive out to the burbs or down to Vito and Nick's.

    I asked for mine well done, per the thread advice, and it was great. As an added bonus, the cheese overspilled the edge on one half and I got lots of burnt cheese overflow bits. A bit harder to eat with the edge crust being covered, but well worth it.

    I'm glad LTH turned me on to this place.
    http://edzos.com/
    Edzo's Evanston on Facebook or Twitter.

    Edzo's Lincoln Park on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Post #92 - February 5th, 2010, 12:03 pm
    Post #92 - February 5th, 2010, 12:03 pm Post #92 - February 5th, 2010, 12:03 pm
    I am with elakin on this one. If I could instantly have ANY pizza in the Chicago area, Candlelite would not be my first choice. However, for the far northside pizza desert it is located in, it rates at the top (especially on 2 for 1 night). As an added plus, they now deliver to my house. The next time I order for delivery, instead of Calo's (which delivers here, but is much farther away), I will try ordering from Candlelite. We shall see how the pizza holds up when delivered. At any rate, I am glad to have it back as a resource for decent pizza in the hood.
  • Post #93 - February 7th, 2010, 11:13 am
    Post #93 - February 7th, 2010, 11:13 am Post #93 - February 7th, 2010, 11:13 am
    Inspired by a post above, we ordered a sausage and caramelized onion pizza from here. Crust was great, topping tasty and not too heavy (although, yes, the onions were not caramelized), the only drawback being that the quoted half-hour delivery time took more like an hour and fifteen, and the pizza was barely lukewarm. Still fine, but I think we'll opt for in-house eating next time.
    As a mattra-fact, Pie Face, you are beginning to look almost human. - Barbara Bennett
  • Post #94 - February 7th, 2010, 12:00 pm
    Post #94 - February 7th, 2010, 12:00 pm Post #94 - February 7th, 2010, 12:00 pm
    I also got delivery from Candlelite last night. We enjoyed an applewood smoked bacon and carmelized onion pizza, ordered slightly burnt at the edges. The order taker laughed, and said he would tell the kitchen exactly that. I am surprised by Ms. Creamcheese's delivery experience. Our pizza arrived in just over 20 minutes, and was piping hot. The pizza was indeed cooked exactly as ordered, and although there was some pooling of ingredients, even the crust at very center of the pizza was golden brown and still a bit crunchy. The onions on our pie were definitely carmelized. They were so sweet, the onions almost overpowered the sauce, giving the normally tangy sauce a semi-sweet Boyardiesque flavor. Nevertheless, the pizza was delicious. The 'large' pie was wolfed down in a few minutes by 2 hungry adult males (order accordingly). The salty smokey bacon and sweet carmelized onions went really well together. The moisture from the onions definitely contributed to the center-pooling effect. Had I not ordered the pizza slightly blackened around the edges, the center pieces may have become too soggy. The next time, I might try ordering light cheese to cut down on the gloppiness of the inside pieces (or maybe order the pizza pie-cut). At any rate, I can't explain the huge difference in delivery wait-times (we ordered at about 7pm), but based on our experience yesterday evening, Candlelite has replaced Calo's as my current goto spot for delivery to RP.
  • Post #95 - February 14th, 2010, 11:10 am
    Post #95 - February 14th, 2010, 11:10 am Post #95 - February 14th, 2010, 11:10 am
    i went to candlelite for the first time in about ten years and it was good, but...it wasn't as great as it was when i lived near there in the early 80s when it was under different ownership

    they didn't even know what a "candlelite special" was...which was their signature pizza back in the old days...basically a sausage, pepperoni, green pepper, onion, black oilive pizza with lots and lots of garlic and optional anchovies....it was to die for

    i would love to find the old owners and see if they are in the bar/pizza biz somewhere else

    i heard once they may have moved up into evanston somewhere...if anyone knows of any info please do tell

    thanks!!

    but in general, candlelite is worth going to, good thin crust, very good sauce, interesting and flavorful toppings, good beer selections, not the snappiest service, but a place to be on any pizza fan's list, IMHO

    regards to all
  • Post #96 - February 14th, 2010, 12:49 pm
    Post #96 - February 14th, 2010, 12:49 pm Post #96 - February 14th, 2010, 12:49 pm
    pizzafan wrote:i would love to find the old owners and see if they are in the bar/pizza biz somewhere else

    i heard once they may have moved up into evanston somewhere...if anyone knows of any info please do tell

    Years ago, the original long-time owners sold the Candlelite to their nephew, John, and a business partner(probably in the early 90's). The place and its menu remained relatively unchanged until it went out of business. The location remained empty for over a year until it was taken over by the current owners and drastically remodeled. Just before the original Candlelite went out of business, John and a couple of old Candlelite regulars opened the Bluestone on Central in Evanston.

    Personally, I think the Candlelite pizza is better now, than it was under the old owners. In the old days, the crust was so thin, you could see light through it. While it was by far the the thinnest crust I had ever seen, it was not substantial enough to support the toppings. I have never had the pizza at the Bluestone, so I do not know how it compares to the ultra-thin crust pies served at the "old" Candlelite.

    I noticed the "new" Candlelite has added a BLT pizza, which is similar to the "club sandwich" pizza served at the old Candlelite, in that it is covered in cold shredded lettuce just prior to serving. IIRC, the "old" Candlelite pizza had smoked turkey and bacon with shredded lettuce. For years, I thought the lettuce thing was just a gimmick, until one of the owners made one for me, gratis. The pizza had to be consumed quickly, before the lettuce warmed, but the cold quenching lettuce made an interesting (if not radical) contrast to the hot, cheesey pizza and salty bacon.

    Bluestone
    1932 Central Street
    Evanston, IL 60201-2228
    (847) 424-0420
  • Post #97 - February 24th, 2010, 10:34 am
    Post #97 - February 24th, 2010, 10:34 am Post #97 - February 24th, 2010, 10:34 am
    d4v3 wrote:For years, I thought the lettuce thing was just a gimmick, until one of the owners made one for me, gratis. The pizza had to be consumed quickly, before the lettuce warmed, but the cold quenching lettuce made an interesting (if not radical) contrast to the hot, cheesey pizza and salty bacon.

    Went to the Candlelite last night for 2/1 Tuesday, when I suggested the BLT pizza to my tablemates I was scoffed at, sounds like it's, at least, an interesting variation if not quite culinary masterpiece.

    Garlic fries seemed same as in past, though we forgot to ask for crisp, and the pizza close, if not exact, with a crisp, tasty, if slightly bland crust. Not crowded at 7 PM, surprisingly, given the two for one deal, friendly efficient service, good price, easy parking, I see a Tuesday 2/1 revisit in the near future.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #98 - February 24th, 2010, 10:40 am
    Post #98 - February 24th, 2010, 10:40 am Post #98 - February 24th, 2010, 10:40 am
    G Wiv wrote: when I suggested the BLT pizza to my tablemates I was scoffed at, sounds like it's, at least, an interesting variation if not quite culinary masterpiece.
    Gary


    Not at Candlelite but I had a BLT pizza once and was not happy when I found it came with mayo just like a BLT sandwich. It was a work thing and the secretary who ordered the pizza thought it sounded good without input from the crew. We never let her order anything again.
    Last edited by LikestoEatout on February 24th, 2010, 11:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #99 - February 24th, 2010, 11:15 am
    Post #99 - February 24th, 2010, 11:15 am Post #99 - February 24th, 2010, 11:15 am
    G Wiv wrote: when I suggested the BLT pizza to my tablemates I was scoffed at


    Lettuce on a pizza is like ketchup on a hot dog. Both are abominations; yet people who don't know any better eat them.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #100 - March 18th, 2010, 7:04 pm
    Post #100 - March 18th, 2010, 7:04 pm Post #100 - March 18th, 2010, 7:04 pm
    I made my first visit to Candlelite last month. Luckily I had forgotten some of the comments in this thread and ordered the white pizza. I was surprised how much I enjoyed it, much more than the margherita in fact. The sweet sautéed onions were great and meshed well with the mix of mozzarella, ricotta and goat cheese to yield something like an Italian-American flammkuchen. Next time I might try adding bacon. I don't know if the white pie is routinely good these days or if we got lucky. In any case I'd suggest giving it a try if it sounds at all appealing.

    Candlelite
    7452 N Western Av
    Chicago
    773-465-0087
  • Post #101 - March 19th, 2010, 8:46 am
    Post #101 - March 19th, 2010, 8:46 am Post #101 - March 19th, 2010, 8:46 am
    I was hankering for a burger Wednesday night so we headed over to Candlelite for the 2 for 1 burger special. Although it satisfied my burger need, the Candlelite burger is not something to go out of the way for. Burger cooked well past the medium-rare requested (a condition I expected). Mr. X's garlic fries were delicious as they usually are at Candlelite, my tater tots were plentiful and tasty. Pickles were exceptionally crisp and zesty. For the price, it served the purpose.
    -Mary
  • Post #102 - November 3rd, 2010, 7:49 am
    Post #102 - November 3rd, 2010, 7:49 am Post #102 - November 3rd, 2010, 7:49 am
    G Wiv wrote:Not crowded at 7 PM, surprisingly, given the two for one deal, friendly efficient service, good price, easy parking, I see a Tuesday 2/1 revisit in the near future.
    2/1 Tuesday, crisp garlicky fries with a nice hit of red wine vinegar, crisp crust pizza w/sausage, jalapeno, anchovy and my new favorite topping caramelized onions on one, cheese/sausage/mushroom/onion on the second pizza. Total for four people with a couple of drinks $42 including tax, decent service, easy parking and solid thin crust pizza.

    Candlelite Two for One Tuesday, count me a fan.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #103 - November 3rd, 2010, 2:40 pm
    Post #103 - November 3rd, 2010, 2:40 pm Post #103 - November 3rd, 2010, 2:40 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    G Wiv wrote:Not crowded at 7 PM, surprisingly, given the two for one deal, friendly efficient service, good price, easy parking, I see a Tuesday 2/1 revisit in the near future.
    2/1 Tuesday, crisp garlicky fries with a nice hit of red wine vinegar, crisp crust pizza w/sausage, jalapeno, anchovy and my new favorite topping caramelized onions on one, cheese/sausage/mushroom/onion on the second pizza. Total for four people with a couple of drinks $42 including tax, decent service, easy parking and solid thin crust pizza.

    Candlelite Two for One Tuesday, count me a fan.

    Enjoy,
    Gary



    Hmmm, I think I have an idea for next Tuesday. I adore carmelized onions.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #104 - November 3rd, 2010, 3:24 pm
    Post #104 - November 3rd, 2010, 3:24 pm Post #104 - November 3rd, 2010, 3:24 pm
    pairs4life wrote:Hmmm, I think I have an idea for next Tuesday. I adore carmelized onions.


    Don't forget to always order your pizza "well done and crispy" at Candlelite. Those are the magic words.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #105 - November 3rd, 2010, 4:11 pm
    Post #105 - November 3rd, 2010, 4:11 pm Post #105 - November 3rd, 2010, 4:11 pm
    stevez wrote:
    G Wiv wrote: when I suggested the BLT pizza to my tablemates I was scoffed at


    Lettuce on a pizza is like ketchup on a hot dog. Both are abominations; yet people who don't know any better eat them.


    Vehemently, disagree. :mrgreen:
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #106 - November 23rd, 2012, 7:31 pm
    Post #106 - November 23rd, 2012, 7:31 pm Post #106 - November 23rd, 2012, 7:31 pm
    Anyone been recently? We've had up and down experiences over the years and it kind of fell off our radar. Drove past a few days ago and wondered if we should give it a try again soon...
  • Post #107 - November 24th, 2012, 7:11 am
    Post #107 - November 24th, 2012, 7:11 am Post #107 - November 24th, 2012, 7:11 am
    We visit candlelite on occasion (once a month-ish), as it's a few blocks north of my place on Western. We exchange delivery with them from time to time as well. Pizza is always very crispy, thin crust, but sometimes the texture dances on the edge of being cakey, usually when it comes out a smidget thicker than the recipe intended it to be. IMO, it's not out of this world, but a great thin crust pizza nonetheless. Toppings have always been fresh, service prompt and friendly, parking is usually easy.

    I never visited this place prior to 2010, so I have no idea of how it compares to anytime prior to that - but since i've been going there, it's always been about the same - pretty good, but not "drive outta your way" good.

    one other unique feature (good/bad depending on you), this place is a VERY popular family destination. It's usually filled with half adults/half kids - they seem to try to keep the larger family groups on the north side, as the kids tend to run around (which is allowed/accepted/maybe even encouraged)...which I'm sorta OK with (I have 2 kids under 3). I mention this, because they allow it to get to a level that I could see bothering others, especially on rowdier "kid nights" (not a restaurant promotion, just turns into such with certain crowds). On one such visit, I half expected a giant mouse with a guitar to pop out from behind a curtain....
    I love comfortable food, and comfortable restaurants.
    http://pitbarbq.com
    http://thebudlong.com
    http://denveraf.com
  • Post #108 - November 24th, 2012, 8:20 pm
    Post #108 - November 24th, 2012, 8:20 pm Post #108 - November 24th, 2012, 8:20 pm
    Thanks for the response, Rub.

    We'd have our 9-month-old in tow so it actually sounds like the current atmosphere would be right up our alley. I'm OK with rowdy at a family pizza place as long as it doesn't boundary cross into rude.

    We'll give the place/pizza a re-try sometime soon.
  • Post #109 - January 5th, 2013, 10:15 pm
    Post #109 - January 5th, 2013, 10:15 pm Post #109 - January 5th, 2013, 10:15 pm
    Enjoyed an early dinner here. The veg pizza was just right with a very crispy crust. Scratch onion rings and breaded
    Cod sandwich accompanied by a tangy tartare sauce. We have been eating here for 30 years and the boys are doing just fine.
  • Post #110 - January 29th, 2013, 7:18 am
    Post #110 - January 29th, 2013, 7:18 am Post #110 - January 29th, 2013, 7:18 am
    This was the oddest meal of the year.

    It was my 1st time and I was quite excited. We ordered the veg pizza well done and light on the cheese as well as an order of garlic fries.

    The fries looked and smelled beautiful, but the taste was bizarre. Specifically, the fries were sweet. I mean sweet like, surely this was a mistake. They tasted like everything described up thread + sprinkled with sugar. We sent them back and got another order. Our server asked when we'd last had them because they'd changed the recipe. He also commented that our original order was "sweeter than normal". We get the 2nd order and again they look breathtaking & smell of garlic but are still sweet.

    The pizza arrived and I stopped trying to understand the fries. The crust was crisp, and the tomato sauce was scant. The vegetables seemed an afterthought, as if they were placed on the pizza for decor rather than taste. The whole thing was bland.

    I was terribly dismayed.

    Service was efficient.

    Perhaps I will go back and try a well done cheese pizza, but this didn't do anything for me.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #111 - January 29th, 2013, 7:45 am
    Post #111 - January 29th, 2013, 7:45 am Post #111 - January 29th, 2013, 7:45 am
    pairs4life wrote:The fries looked and smelled beautiful, but the taste was bizarre. Specifically, the fries were sweet. I mean sweet like, surely this was a mistake. They tasted like everything described up thread + sprinkled with sugar. We sent them back and got another order. Our server asked when we'd last had them because they'd changed the recipe. He also commented that our original order was "sweeter than normal". We get the 2nd order and again they look breathtaking & smell of garlic but are still sweet.

    Odd indeed - I wonder what the hell there was to change about the recipe?!? IIRC, there are fries, butter, garlic (and maybe parsley). I can't imagine what they did to make them sweet. Garlic can be sweet, but not like that. Their garlic fries might have been my favorite thing there so I'll be dismayed if they f'ed them up.
  • Post #112 - January 29th, 2013, 11:24 am
    Post #112 - January 29th, 2013, 11:24 am Post #112 - January 29th, 2013, 11:24 am
    Hi,

    Candlelite once was a Great Neighborhood Restaurant for its cracker thin crust pizzas. Less than six months later, they changed the crust recipe abandoning the cracker qualities enjoyed. After a long pause, they returned to cracker crust.

    Thus it does not surprise me if they changed their successful fry recipe, because they have a history of monkeying around with success.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #113 - January 30th, 2013, 12:27 am
    Post #113 - January 30th, 2013, 12:27 am Post #113 - January 30th, 2013, 12:27 am
    BR wrote:I can't imagine what they did to make them sweet.
    IIRC, potatoes that are refrigerated (or maybe just left outside in cold weather) can cause some of the starches to convert to sugar. Maybe a cause?
  • Post #114 - May 3rd, 2013, 5:33 am
    Post #114 - May 3rd, 2013, 5:33 am Post #114 - May 3rd, 2013, 5:33 am
    Had a pizza from here last night and it was great. Large veggie thin crust. Took it home...had to re-heat as it was cold after a 10 minute ride in the car (only downside to crust this thin - the pizza cools down really fast without the extra "insulation"). Next time I'll grab a hot bag from the 'raunt or cover it with a blanket if I'm taking it to go.

    Crispy, perfectly thin crust allows you to enjoy 4-5 slices without feeling over-indulgent. I eat meat everyday, so the veggie toppings were a welcomed change. All the veggies were fresh - and well selected. Spinach, broccoli, peppers (red and green), onions. Their slightly sweet tomato sauce balanced the veggies nicely.

    A great choice for thin crust, the crackly kind, in Rogers Park.
    I love comfortable food, and comfortable restaurants.
    http://pitbarbq.com
    http://thebudlong.com
    http://denveraf.com
  • Post #115 - May 6th, 2013, 3:49 am
    Post #115 - May 6th, 2013, 3:49 am Post #115 - May 6th, 2013, 3:49 am
    Even in its past incarnation, Candlelite was always family oriented, with a front bar and a few tables of police, bikers and firemen. The backroom was usually full of families with kids. There was an unwritten rule that kids stay on one side of the partition, and serious drinkers hang out on the other. It was a classic Chicago neighborhood bar and grill, which have all but disappeared with the proliferation of cable tv and air conditioning.

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