While my luck hasn't been all that great lately, and the hits just keep on coming, the experience of a good lunch helps ease the pain a bit. Enough to take the slight edge off, at least.
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When the Chicago French Market opened on the ground floor of the Ogilvie Transportation Center in 2009, I initially had mixed feelings about the project. But it's now hard to think of another place in Chicago where you can find such a wide variety of excellent food options in such a small area.
We don't want to get all hyperbolic, but we're unsure if any other neighborhood equals Lakeview in the quantity and diversity of its cheap eats. Sure, the Chicago classics are covered, including some of the best examples of burgers, hot dogs, and pizza in the city. But what we love the is the mix of new and old.
You know Sarah Grueneberg as the executive chef at Spiaggia, where she turns out elegant Italian plates, and as the bubbly runner-up on Top Chef Texas. When not at Spiaggia, you can find her studying Italian cuisine in Italy or eating her way through her Lakeview neighborhood.
At Big Jones, chef and co-owner Paul Fehribach cooks up Southern dishes rooted in history. But when it comes time to eat in his East Lakeview neighborhood, where he's lived for about seven years, Fehribach favors a mix of old and new.
Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine Shop is the kind of place that has been unfairly labeled as simply just being a "cheese shop." In reality there is so much more to Pastoral's inventory, including a sandwich menu that shows off some of the best products they carry and work with.
As the hub of Chicago, The Loop has no shortage of places to find a bite to eat. But not all of us are stock brokers or businessmen with expense accounts, nor do we have the time to sit through coursed out menus. Most of us just need something to eat quickly, and we'd like to find a place that's good and cheap.
The best part about grilled cheese is that simplicity is part of the deal. This sandwich is as good now as it was when we were eight years old. But even we were surprised by how many great grilled cheese sandwiches there are out there. This list is by no means complete, but here are 21 grilled sandwiches we are currently infatuated with in Chicago
Sure, a great outdoor patio is worth celebrating. But if you really want to find the best places to eat outdoors in Chicago, your best bet is to set down a blanket in one of the city's amazing parks, which, if you haven't noticed by now, are in full bloom.
So-called for their resemblance to the fungus, chocolate truffles have other characteristics in common with their mushroom namesake: they're rare, indulgent, yes, often expensive. But often the cost correlates with quality ingredients, whether that means Valhrona cocoa or Dom Pérignon cream. Of course, if you agree that money can't buy love, there are a few under-$10 options on our list as well.
State Street has changed, and as far as the food options are concerned, it has been for the better. There is now no need to visit this culinary hot spot and have to settle for a stale sandwich. Instead, snack on artisanally made ones, along with messy mac and cheese, and deep bowls of reviving ramen.