Say what you will about Imo's. Whether you personally like it or not, it's iconic St. Louis cuisine — and now the editors at Tasting Table are giving the Square Beyond Compare some national recognition.
The website, which publishes food and drink news targeted at culinary enthusiasts, released its list May 22 about the best pizza in the country
. From deep dish to wood-fired to Neapolitan to New York-style pizza, Tasting Table highlighted some of the nation's best pizza places and the 26 states the chosen pies call home.
And, yes, Imo's won accolades for Missouri for its St. Louis-style pizza.
In the post, Tasting Table walks readers who are new to Imo's through its story of creation, as well the science behind cracker-thin crust and Provel cheese:
What started in 1964 as a desire for meat-topped pizza after a Friday spent adhering to the traditional Catholic dietary restrictions has developed into a pizza empire with roughly 100 locations today. We're talking about the famous Imo's, which slings Saint Louis-style pizza, with its thin, crispy crust and Provel® cheese.
Unlike most other styles, the Saint Louis version swaps yeast for baking powder in its crust, which yields a cracker-like consistency reminiscent of saltines in the best way possible. The Provel cheese—a processed blend of cheddar, provolone and Swiss cheeses known for its incomparable gooeyness—is the other signature component. It's a style seldom found outside of the city, so make sure to try a slice whenever you're in the area.
There's just one problem with that: "Try a slice"? We wouldn't exactly use that phrase to refer to pizza that only comes in entire pies — and pies cut into squares to boot.
But we digress. Love it, leave it or just don't understand it, Imo's has brought props to St. Louis — and we'll take any chance to brag about that.
To read the full list of best pizzas in America, visit tastingtable.com