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Barnaby's in Northbrook - distinctive, thin-crust pizza

Barnaby's in Northbrook - distinctive, thin-crust pizza
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  • Post #31 - February 14th, 2011, 8:31 pm
    Post #31 - February 14th, 2011, 8:31 pm Post #31 - February 14th, 2011, 8:31 pm
    It's fully endorsed by the LTH North Lunch Group. :D
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #32 - February 16th, 2011, 8:57 pm
    Post #32 - February 16th, 2011, 8:57 pm Post #32 - February 16th, 2011, 8:57 pm
    No offense to many of the posters above, but I grew up a couple miles away (if that) from Barnaby's and I think it's about as bland of pizza as I've ever had. I know many many many people love it, but I just don't get it??
  • Post #33 - February 16th, 2011, 9:35 pm
    Post #33 - February 16th, 2011, 9:35 pm Post #33 - February 16th, 2011, 9:35 pm
    I"ve been a regular for years at Niles... still good !!!

    A friend once told me that the Papa Charlie location on Taylor st. WAS once an actual Barnabys - and then became P C.
  • Post #34 - February 16th, 2011, 10:10 pm
    Post #34 - February 16th, 2011, 10:10 pm Post #34 - February 16th, 2011, 10:10 pm
    P. Channon wrote:No offense to many of the posters above, but I grew up a couple miles away (if that) from Barnaby's and I think it's about as bland of pizza as I've ever had. I know many many many people love it, but I just don't get it??


    Just curious which Barnaby's? I think there's a difference in locations. That said, that's what this forum is all about, I like, you dislike, discussion ensues.
    For what we choose is what we are. He should not miss this second opportunity to re-create himself with food. Jim Crace "The Devil's Larder"
  • Post #35 - February 16th, 2011, 10:27 pm
    Post #35 - February 16th, 2011, 10:27 pm Post #35 - February 16th, 2011, 10:27 pm
    mbh wrote:Just curious which Barnaby's? I think there's a difference in locations. That said, that's what this forum is all about, I like, you dislike, discussion ensues.

    As we briefly discussed at our lunch last week, the remaining Barnaby's are definitely not all the same. It's my understanding that the folks who own the Northbrook location also own the rights to the name and the recipe, and they produce it diligently. While I'm sure it's changed a bit over the 40+ years they've been in business, it hasn't changed much. From what I've been told, they've licensed the recipe (and name) to the other locations but my experience is that the other locations don't really follow it. Pizzas from the Niles location resemble those produced at the Northbrook location in appearance but they don't taste the same at all. I've had it within the last year it wasn't close.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #36 - February 17th, 2011, 8:17 am
    Post #36 - February 17th, 2011, 8:17 am Post #36 - February 17th, 2011, 8:17 am
    Schaumburg was as GREAT as always when I was there last April..........
    Go Cubs Go !
  • Post #37 - February 17th, 2011, 9:09 am
    Post #37 - February 17th, 2011, 9:09 am Post #37 - February 17th, 2011, 9:09 am
    mbh wrote:
    P. Channon wrote:No offense to many of the posters above, but I grew up a couple miles away (if that) from Barnaby's and I think it's about as bland of pizza as I've ever had. I know many many many people love it, but I just don't get it??


    Just curious which Barnaby's? I think there's a difference in locations. That said, that's what this forum is all about, I like, you dislike, discussion ensues.


    I've been to the Northbrook location quite a few times with family friends who loved the pizza. To me, I didn't understand all the love for the pizza. It has no unique style, flavor, or atmosphere. I understand if people think it's a good value, but that's about it.
  • Post #38 - February 17th, 2011, 9:18 am
    Post #38 - February 17th, 2011, 9:18 am Post #38 - February 17th, 2011, 9:18 am
    jazzman wrote:I"ve been a regular for years at Niles... still good !!!

    A friend once told me that the Papa Charlie location on Taylor st. WAS once an actual Barnabys - and then became P C.


    That is correct, it was a Barnaby's location and the location was sold and became P C. As a kid I worked at the Barnaby's on Touhy Ave. The coroporate office was located in the same building. All of the locations used to all use the same formula, ingredients, prep, etc. The Touhy ave location was used as a "test" location for anything new that they were going to try.

    As each individual location went thru changes in owners and/or management and their surrounding neighborhoods changed they each changed slightly from the basic formula, suppliers, etc. The holding company for Barnaby's used to also have other business outside of the restaurants, bookkeeping of some sort if I remember correctly. As their business floundered they went to "licenses" instead of franchises and that is when the differences started to occur between the locations.


    In the mid '70's to early '80's the Touhy ave location used to sponsor a whole bunch of local athletic teams (Softball, basketball, etc.). On most nights the place was packed with teams after their games. The manager was "team friendly" and would sponsor just about anyone who would ask, because he knew that he would get his sponsor money back 10 fold in beer sales in just a couple of weeks. It was a great neighborhood hangout. The owner however was less than enthusiastic about the teams (regardless of the money they brought in). He slowly phased out sponsoring teams over the years and the crowds slowly diminished. He then started to cut corners with the quality of the product going for cheaper options and suppliers and the taste and quality of the product suffered.

    I have not been in a Barnaby's in years. The last one I visited was the one in DesPlaines near the Horizon. It was still pretty good and pretty close to what I remembered.
  • Post #39 - February 17th, 2011, 10:30 am
    Post #39 - February 17th, 2011, 10:30 am Post #39 - February 17th, 2011, 10:30 am
    P. Channon wrote:
    mbh wrote:
    P. Channon wrote:No offense to many of the posters above, but I grew up a couple miles away (if that) from Barnaby's and I think it's about as bland of pizza as I've ever had. I know many many many people love it, but I just don't get it??


    Just curious which Barnaby's? I think there's a difference in locations. That said, that's what this forum is all about, I like, you dislike, discussion ensues.


    I've been to the Northbrook location quite a few times with family friends who loved the pizza. To me, I didn't understand all the love for the pizza. It has no unique style, flavor, or atmosphere. I understand if people think it's a good value, but that's about it.

    I can understand not liking it (to each his own) but to say it's not unique is utterly bizzare to me. I could pick this pizza out of a line-up blindfolded! :D

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #40 - February 17th, 2011, 1:05 pm
    Post #40 - February 17th, 2011, 1:05 pm Post #40 - February 17th, 2011, 1:05 pm
    Seconded. It may not be everyone's favorite pizza in terms of taste and style (I happen to love it), but it definitely has a unique taste and texture.
  • Post #41 - February 17th, 2011, 1:25 pm
    Post #41 - February 17th, 2011, 1:25 pm Post #41 - February 17th, 2011, 1:25 pm
    AlexG wrote:Seconded. It may not be everyone's favorite pizza in terms of taste and style (I happen to love it), but it definitely has a unique taste and texture.


    Not to mention the distinctive scalloped edge on the crust.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #42 - February 18th, 2011, 8:47 am
    Post #42 - February 18th, 2011, 8:47 am Post #42 - February 18th, 2011, 8:47 am
    Must say, i don't begin to understand the value of "unique" here--isn't the important thing whether it tastes good? If it's satisfying? I suppose unique is of value at Alinea but not sure how it enters into the equation at a pizza place!!! To each their own, right? To me, it's simply delicious and by far my favorite in the Chicago area.
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #43 - March 15th, 2011, 8:16 am
    Post #43 - March 15th, 2011, 8:16 am Post #43 - March 15th, 2011, 8:16 am
    P. Channon wrote: . . . I grew up a couple miles away (if that) from Barnaby's and I think it's about as bland of pizza as I've ever had. I know many many many people love it, but I just don't get it??

    As so very many have expressed, I couldn't disagree with you more. So be it. I live far away now from this great pizza place, but always look forward to being in the area to indulge in one of the greatest pizza creations ever. Bland it is not. Unique it is. Tasty it is. Quality unique crust, sausage and ingredients it has. And on and on.

    It's often said that in any business enterprise, people vote with their feet (actually their dollars). The Northbrook Barnaby's has for a large number of years now been immensely successful, immensely popular, and immensely good tasting. Kind of shows that an incredibly large number of pizza lovers who pass through their doors do not think that it is "about as bland a pizza as they've ever had." But . . . different strokes, eh?
    ____________________________
    SD
    Last edited by Sundaze on March 16th, 2011, 5:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #44 - March 15th, 2011, 9:12 am
    Post #44 - March 15th, 2011, 9:12 am Post #44 - March 15th, 2011, 9:12 am
    Sundaze wrote:The Northbrook Barnaby's has for a large number of years now been immensely successful, immensely popular


    So has McDonald's. So has Budweiser.

    I have not been to Barnaby's so I don't know (and Northbrook would be quite a haul for me so it's unlikely I will any time soon), I just don't think that particular argument is very convincing. Argumentum ad populum

    Don't mean to bust your balls either, thanks for posting! :)
    Ronnie said I should probably tell you guys about my website so

    Hey I have a website.
    http://www.sandwichtribunal.com
  • Post #45 - March 15th, 2011, 9:37 am
    Post #45 - March 15th, 2011, 9:37 am Post #45 - March 15th, 2011, 9:37 am
    Jim, appreciate the thoughts. I know that argument has some application to situations like a McDonald's (which in a few instances is very good, but not many to me personally). But McDonald's has a massive, massive marketing budget and expertise that can make the average lover of a competitor's product just want to switch and have the MD product . . . just once (and the ad agency then makes gazillions $$$!).

    Do you really think that in a situation like a little Northbrook Barnaby's that the "vote with your feet" concept has little to no meaning? I don't care what the "theories" are, I'm just going to line up with the crowds outside the Barnaby's pizzeria in Northbrook, Illinois. They've got to be lining up . . . for some reason! ! ! ! !

    I'll toast a beer to you next time, but it just won't be a Budweiser!
    ---------------------------
    SD
  • Post #46 - March 4th, 2012, 7:26 pm
    Post #46 - March 4th, 2012, 7:26 pm Post #46 - March 4th, 2012, 7:26 pm
    We had dinner for 10 at the Des Plaines location pre-DePaul Big East home closeout game and both the basketball (30 point blow out victory over Seton Hall) and the pizza were terrific! Having only eaten about 50 times at the Northbrook location and one disappointing time at the Morton Grove location, I can say that this store was a-ok! Crust was slightly softer and sporting less cornmeal than N'brook but the sauce, cheese and toppings were all good. For those looking for pizza in the area, Barnaby's Des Plaines will do the job.
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #47 - March 4th, 2012, 7:33 pm
    Post #47 - March 4th, 2012, 7:33 pm Post #47 - March 4th, 2012, 7:33 pm
    The one on Caldwell is in Niles, not Morton Grove.
  • Post #48 - March 4th, 2012, 7:45 pm
    Post #48 - March 4th, 2012, 7:45 pm Post #48 - March 4th, 2012, 7:45 pm
    PortPkPaul wrote:The one on Caldwell is in Niles, not Morton Grove.

    You are correct.

    Barnaby's Des Plaines
    636 E Touhy Ave
    Des Plaines, IL 60018
    (847) 297-8866

    Barnaby's Niles
    7950 Caldwell Ave
    Niles, IL 60714
    (847) 967-8600

    boudreaulicious wrote:We had dinner for 10 at the Des Plaines location pre-DePaul Big East home closeout game and both the basketball (30 point blow out victory over Seton Hall) and the pizza were terrific! Having only eaten about 50 times at the Northbrook location and one disappointing time at the Morton Grove location, I can say that this store was a-ok! Crust was slightly softer and sporting less cornmeal than N'brook but the sauce, cheese and toppings were all good. For those looking for pizza in the area, Barnaby's Des Plaines will do the job.

    Good to know, as I haven't had anything I'd for which I'd return anywhere other than the Northbrook location. In fact, my office is less than 1.5 miles from the Niles location and when we want Barnaby's, we trek up to Northbrook.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #49 - March 6th, 2012, 8:13 am
    Post #49 - March 6th, 2012, 8:13 am Post #49 - March 6th, 2012, 8:13 am
    Schaumburg Barnaby's closed Dec 31st after 43 years ................ :(
    Go Cubs Go !
  • Post #50 - March 6th, 2012, 3:04 pm
    Post #50 - March 6th, 2012, 3:04 pm Post #50 - March 6th, 2012, 3:04 pm
    No! the one in Schaumburg closed?

    I grew up in Schaumburg when Dad moved there pre-Woodfield (72/Higgins was two lanes dirt to get to our Neighborhood, now a huge concrete thing). I loved their pizza and in the very rare times I go back, I always stopped there. Scheesh - I remember when Schaumburg was so small they didn't have a post office and everything was delivered from Palatine. One less reason to go back I guess, outside of how crowded and unlivable Schaumburg became.

    Anyone remember Schaumburger beer? It was served at Barnaby's for a while I believe.
  • Post #51 - March 8th, 2012, 10:02 pm
    Post #51 - March 8th, 2012, 10:02 pm Post #51 - March 8th, 2012, 10:02 pm
    What?????????? Why would that close? That's horrible.
  • Post #52 - March 8th, 2012, 11:27 pm
    Post #52 - March 8th, 2012, 11:27 pm Post #52 - March 8th, 2012, 11:27 pm
    they were broke and the food was nasty. that's why they closed.
    "By the fig, the olive..." Surat Al-Teen, Mecca 95:1"
  • Post #53 - March 9th, 2012, 12:30 am
    Post #53 - March 9th, 2012, 12:30 am Post #53 - March 9th, 2012, 12:30 am
    Habibi wrote:they were broke and the food was nasty. that's why they closed.

    Can't speak on the now-shuttered Schaumburg location (never been there) but the Northbrook location is still putting out incredibly cravable, truly distinctive pizza. There's nothing artisanal about it -- just a mighty fine, old-skool munch that I've been enjoying on a regular basis for over 40 years.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #54 - March 20th, 2012, 7:02 pm
    Post #54 - March 20th, 2012, 7:02 pm Post #54 - March 20th, 2012, 7:02 pm
    I don't get to Barnaby's all that often due to my wife's low carb regimen but due to a girls night out I had my chance tonight. I went with my daughter and we got a half canadian bacon and half onion/green pepper. Although I am very into food (and eating), I rarely rave.

    I raved tonight!!
  • Post #55 - May 8th, 2012, 2:46 pm
    Post #55 - May 8th, 2012, 2:46 pm Post #55 - May 8th, 2012, 2:46 pm
    Earlier today at Barnaby's . . .

    Image
    Ram4 presents Tomas of Barnaby's with their GNR certificate

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #56 - May 8th, 2012, 2:53 pm
    Post #56 - May 8th, 2012, 2:53 pm Post #56 - May 8th, 2012, 2:53 pm
    Great job guys!! So what did he do with it???
    "Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." Miles Kington
  • Post #57 - May 8th, 2012, 2:55 pm
    Post #57 - May 8th, 2012, 2:55 pm Post #57 - May 8th, 2012, 2:55 pm
    boudreaulicious wrote:Great job guys!! So what did he do with it???

    From what I could understand, he left it in the office for the owners, who were not in today.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #58 - May 8th, 2012, 5:33 pm
    Post #58 - May 8th, 2012, 5:33 pm Post #58 - May 8th, 2012, 5:33 pm
    Habibi wrote:they were broke and the food was nasty. that's why they closed.


    Actually the car dealership next door gave them an offer they couldn't refuse. I've been eating at the Des Plaines location forever and Schaumberg was pretty darn close. The one location that doesn't hold a candle is the Arlington Heights location, poor at best so I avoid it. Never been to the Northbrook location but that's going to change
  • Post #59 - May 9th, 2012, 11:22 am
    Post #59 - May 9th, 2012, 11:22 am Post #59 - May 9th, 2012, 11:22 am
    Craig B wrote:Never been to the Northbrook location but that's going to change

    Boy are you in for surprise! :wink:
  • Post #60 - June 7th, 2012, 1:59 pm
    Post #60 - June 7th, 2012, 1:59 pm Post #60 - June 7th, 2012, 1:59 pm
    Made my first trip to the Northbrook location today. Impressed by the perfectly cooked pizza. I agree with comments upthread that the crust is sort of a combination of cracker and pastry.
    But I can see why someone might refer to the pizza is bland if he is talking about the crust; it seems more about texture than about flavor. I think this is only an issue if one orders a meatless pizza. Next time I will include pepperoni, sausage, or bacon among the toppings as a nice foil to the crispy crust.

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