Will Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert’s Summer Visits to Chicago Reignite the Pizza Wars?

Must read

Comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert have separately announced they’ll bring Stewart’s The Daily Show and Colbert’s The Late Show to Chicago during August’s Democratic National Convention.

For Stewart, it’s a return to the city with which he waged a pizza war against deep dish, endearing himself to New Yorkers before eventually accepting Lou Malnati’s olive branch and calling for a pizza armistice back in 2013.

Could Stewart’s forthcoming visit open old wounds? The terrain is different with Chicago embracing thin-crust, tavern-style pizza and somewhat shunning deep dish, casting it as a rare indulgence (even as backlash against the phrase “tavern style” is building). Now 11 years after his rant, Stewart’s likely to find local allies. Certainly, Marc Malnati, who appeared on The Daily Show in 2013 to serve Stewart his family’s pizza, is up to the task. The Stewart episode forged a marketing template for Malnati’s to solicit national attention, a strategy executed perfectly on multiple occasions. Pizza remains a popular topic for Stewart who just last week attacked presumptive GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump’s pizza etiquette.

Colbert enjoys a less confrontational relationship with Chicago, having lived in the city for a decade, attending Northwestern University in suburban Evanston, and performing with Second City. He also worked as a server at Scoozi, a Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises restaurant that closed in 2014 in River North. He’s called Chicago the best place he’s ever lived in and took joy in 2016 working as a Wrigley Field hot dog vendor, selling wieners during the Chicago Cubs’ World Series championship run. The Wieners Circle also got a shoutout in a 2010 segment on The Late Show. Last month, Colbert once again sank his teeth into the city’s encased meat discourse and talked about Chicago’s anti-ketchup philosophy, and Heinz’s odd ketchup stations: “Ketchup is for the children,” Colbert said during The Late Show’s episode on April 15.

The DNC, which takes place between August 19 and August 22, may provide some antics at Chicago’s restaurants. Maybe the two will hang out with the cast of The Bear or eat soul food with Chicago Sky rookie Angel Reese. Maybe they’ll grab a taco at Carnitas Uruapan. Hopefully, Stewart and Colbert will produce more tomfoolery and there’s less of the other stuff.

More articles

Latest article