Chicago specialties in the Valley for Spring Training fans to enjoy

By Taylor O’Connor

As Spring Training season approaches, many Chicago residents will flock to Arizona to appreciate baseball and the sunshine. Heck! Minus the cold weather it will almost feel like being back home in Chicago with all of the restaurants.

You betcha that with all these Midwesterners, Chicagoans specifically, coming to the desert for its palm trees and year-round warmth, they are bringing their tasty deep-dish pizza and Italian beef sandwiches with them. Here are five Chicago influenced, or Chicago original, restaurants in the Phoenix area to enjoy.

Portillo’s

Tempe Marketplace: 5 S. McClintock Drive, Tempe, 480.967.7988; 10574 N. 90th Street, Scottsdale, 480.451.2888, portillos.com.

In 2013, the historic and Chicago-original Portillo’s made its way to the Valley. Now, customers can enjoy their famous hot dogs and beef and sausage sandwiches. There are two locations within the Valley, one in Tempe and one in Scottsdale.

Giordano’s

16222 N. 83rd Avenue, Peoria, 623.208.4330; 12811 N. Tatum Boulevard, Phoenix, 480.666.8160, giordanos.com.

In 1974, Efren and Joseph Giordano opened the first Giordano’s in Chicago. The famous deep-dish pizza spread across the United States, customers patiently waiting their 26 minutes for the saucy and flavorful pizza. There are two locations in the Valley, one in Peoria and one in Phoenix.

Chicago Hamburger Company

3749 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, 602.955.4137, chicagohamburger.com.

Home of the Original Windy City Slider, the Chicago Hamburger Company has been serving its customers since 1975. Guests can also enjoy Vienna hot dogs and polish, charbroiled sandwiches, wings, salads and old-fashioned milkshakes. There is one location in Phoenix.

Luke’s of Chicago

1602 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, 602.264.4022, lukesofchicago.com.

Phoenix is bringing people back, or welcoming them, to Harlem Avenue and Addison Street to taste Luke’s of Chicago’s signature Italian beef sandwiches. The restaurant uses beef that is cooked and sliced on location daily. Arizona has one Phoenix location.

Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria

Uptown Plaza, 100 E. Camelback Road, Phoenix, 602.892.9998; 3431 N. 56th Street, Phoenix, 602.551.8990; 17787 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, 480.681.3400, loumalnatis.com.

In 1971, the first Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria opened in Chicago and in 2016 it debuted out of state in Arizona for pizza lovers. Arizona has three Lou Malnati’s within the Valley.

These are five out of many other Chicago restaurants in the Phoenix area. Oh jeez, with all these options it will be so darn hard to pick, but you betcha Spring Training season can bring good food and familiar places even so far away from home.