This sandwich shows up looking like it's about to drive you to prom. Tidy, clean-cut, with nary a dribble of beefy, fatty goodness on its collar, it even wears a corsage of lettuce and tomatoes.
North Center, North Side
Not nearly as ubiquitous as dogs or Italian beef, jibaritos are more the cult classic of Chicago originals.
Few restaurants exude lounging-in-a-hammock warmth quite like Sola, the Hawaiian-inspired restaurant in the heart of North Center. Chef/owner Carol Wallack is a culinary Jack Johnson, seamlessly combining her love for Hawaiian culture with the bounty of the Midwest.
With its Bavarian façade and unmistakable black and yellow German coat of arms aglow on Irving Park, you've probably seen Laschet's Inn at least a dozen times, each with the same thought--I wonder what happens in there?
The Cajun Shrimp Wrap ($7.75), much like the place itself, just quietly and unpretentiously goes about the business of being awesome.
Ordering the Hot Beef Sirloin was like drafting a quarterback in the first round--lots of potential upside tempered with serious bust potential. Luckily, this one's a winner.
Lisa from Blue Sky Bakery in Chicago was kind enough to show me how she whips up a batch of her fantastic Mixed Berry Scones. Their remarkably fluffy texture can be explained with just a few simple secrets.
The Bad Apple is known for its fantastic burgers here in Chicago, but I've always wondered what some of their other offerings are like, you know, in case you're not in the mood for delicious, delicious, cow.
Seeking out vegetarian food at Ribfest is sort of like going to a bowling alley in hopes of getting in a round of mini golf. Try as you might, you're not going to find much in the way of greens. But a survey of the available eats actually turned up a few tasty options for the vegetarian diner.
Though you'd be forgiven for not knowing, Chicago is home to a thriving fried shrimp scene. So if you're going to call yourself Snappy's Shrimp House you better know a thing or two about frying the little crustaceans.
Last week, Serious Eats' own Roger Kamholz emailed me to propose an evening of spätzle and sauasage in the North Center neighborhood of Chicago, where a couple of old school German restaurants are still serving up the most straightforward and traditional food of that cuisine. Of course, I obliged. While Roger would cover the spätzle, my job was the sausage.
Resi's Bierstube and Laschet's Inn are two of the last remaining old-school German taverns that once peppered the area around North Center and Lincoln Square. Of course, they both serve spätzle, so I devised a spätzle vs. spätzle competition, which somehow lead us to Spy vs. Spy.
Rather than allowing the uninitiated to snicker and speculate on just what a wiener schnitzel might be, let me set the record straight: It's a veal cutlet that is pounded into a plate sized round, breaded, and deep fried. It's also delicious.
We haven't met many people who don't love a great french fry, and here in Chicago, there are a ton of places to choose from. We scoured the city to compile this list of 10 favorite fry sources. They range from sweet potato fries to foie gras fries to the more classic, skin-on ones.
At sola, amid a menu built around Hawaiian and Hawaiian-inspired fare, sits a burger that might seem out of place. But its toppings, a wonderful blend of textures and flavors, combined with one of the most flavorful pieces of ground beef in town results in one of Chicago's best hamburgers.
The burger story at Jury's Food & Drink doesn't include beef from cows that live majestic lives on small family farms or buns from a 4th generation artisanal breadmaker. Instead, the tale is of a classic burger similar in style to those found at bars and diners across the country, but of a substance only a select few such places achieve.
The Bad Apple, Chicago's lone purveyor of burgers made from Pat LaFrieda beef, features some outstanding creatively-topped patties and outstanding fries with an impressive array of flavors. In the battle for the city's best nontraditional burgers, I think the reigning champion has officially been dethroned.
Serious Eats Chicago contributor Daniel Zemans checks in with another piece of intel on the Windy City pizza scene. Daniel also blogs about Chicagoland pizza with his friends on the Chicago Pizza Club blog. --The Mgmt. O'Famé 4159 N. Western...