Chicagoans might have to sit down for this one.
For years, the battle between New York and Chicago pizza has raged on. Though some argued that a floppy New York slice is best, we knew it was no match for our cheesy deep dish, crisp thin crust and delicious sauce. When Chicago native Michelle Obama headed to the White House, we were glad to have a first lady repping the Windy City, but during a Thursday trip to a New York pizzeria, Obama uttered the words no food loving Chicagoan wants to hear: "It's the best pizza, and I'm from Chicago."
Obama, daughters Malia and Sasha and their grandmother Marian Robinson all were in New York Thursday to check out a musical and eat lunch at Grimaldi's, a popular pizzeria beneath the Brooklyn Bridge.
Ralph Harajda, a waiter at Grimaldi's, told the New York Times blog that Obama was "very pleasant to serve" and a "very generous" tipper. No problems there.
"They loved everything," Harajda told the Times. "I think they said it was better than Chicago pizza."
The Chicago Tribune was as shocked by the statement as the everybody else, so they followed up with Grimaldi's.
Harajda told the Tribune that the group had three large, thin-crust pizzas (one sausage, one pepperoni and one plain) and one small vegetarian pizza, asking for mushrooms, sweet peppers and onions, plus a side of anchovies. He also clarified his statement to the Times.
"No, what she said was, 'It's the best pizza, and I'm from Chicago.' She liked the pizza very, very much. They were pleased."
Any better? Not so much. But the game of telephone continued. From the Tribune:
Owner Frank Ciolli thinks he heard the first lady say it "was fantastic and delicious."
"But she didn't say Chicago pizza wasn't good," he added.
But his daughter, restaurant manager Gina Peluso, said the first lady told her: "I have to tell you, this pizza is great -- and I'm from Chicago."
"She didn't say it was better," according to Peluso.
While the pizza debate continues, Ciolli told the Tribune he would like the President to weigh in on his pizza:
"I said any time they want, if we have the ability, we'd like to deliver a pizza at the White House."