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[Photograph: Josh Conley]

Brasserie 54 is an LM "neighborhood French restaurant and bar" in the heart of Andersonville that offers solid French fare in a very approachable setting. And though you might not immediately associate French food and sandwiches, the croque monsieur ($9) might change your mind.

A great take on the classic bistro sandwich, it features ham, Swiss, béchamel, and mustard. The ham provides the savory backbone here, hitting first. Then you get some funk from the Swiss, followed by the richness of the béchamel. But just when things start to get heavy, the Dijon chimes in with a nice acidic kick to round it out. It's simple and somewhat decadent, but without being a burden. The secret is in the proportions, which allow each ingredient its time to shine.

Brasserie 54

5420 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60640 (map)
773-334-9463
brasserie54.com

Josh Conley is single-handedly trying to re-introduce the verb beget into the everyday lexicon. He traveled to Easter Island one Christmas out of sheer irony. He excises a hefty syntax, and shamelessly promotes the color orange. His wife begat him two small children that he regularly belittles HERE.

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