DOWNTOWN — Jon Stewart loves Chicago, but he's still kinda down on deep dish pizza.
"I can throw down a thin crust; I’ll just roll it up like a straw," he said Thursday while promoting an upcoming Chicago appearance. "Deep dish, you get half a piece into that, and it’s time to call the 'Silence of the Lambs' where they take you away on a gurney."
"I had to concede on taste. It's very tasty. But the pizza, I don't know if I would call it that. It’s a delicious bowl of everything that’s good in pizza."
The former "Daily Show" host is visiting Chicago to emcee the opening ceremony of the Warrior Games later this month at Soldier Field. The Warrior Games, an athletic contest between wounded, ill and injured veterans, begin June 30, marking the first time the games have been played outside a military site.
Stewart said he looks forward to marveling at the athletes and raising awareness about the country's veterans, who he feels don't get enough appreciation for the sacrifices they've made.
But he's also excited to visit Chicago, a city where many of his "Daily Show" cohorts, including Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell cut their comedy teeth.
"I always like to take in a ballgame," Stewart said. "Going to Wrigley — that thing is just a masterpiece, that stadium."
Stewart, a lifelong New York Mets fan who now lives in New Jersey, also offered his congratulations to the world champion Cubs. When a reporter suggested the Cubs (36-35) were playing this season as if they were still reveling in last year's World Series run, Stewart said it could be worse.
"Hey, the Mets are still hung over from not winning the championship [in 2015]," he said.
The comedian said he's enjoying family life since he left the "Daily Show" two years ago, but he's working on getting back into standup, writing and "hopefully" doing a movie soon.
Stewart will emcee the games' opening ceremony July 1, an event capped with a concert by Blake Shelton and Kelly Clarkson. Tickets start at $40.
About 265 veterans will compete in events through July 8, including swimming, wheelchair basketball and track and field.
Stewart, who also hosted the opening ceremonies for last year's games at West Point, said the event is empowering and not a pity party.
"Sometimes you expect to come there and think 'oh these poor men and women, they suffered so much' and all that," he said. "As you watch it, you immediately get caught up in the competitiveness of it, the level of competition and walk away wondering how much they have to offer."
"'I’m going to pay my respects' — it's not about that," Stewart said. "You go there and marvel."