Some Hotspots, Chicago Edition

Posted by Krista on April 7, 2012

Chicago April 2012I’m feeling very with it these days. Although I may be lagging on the blogging front, I’m not lagging so much on the dining front — when I’m in town, that is. Here’s where I’ve been eating.

Tavernita and it’s little neighbor, Pinxtos, 151 W Erie. Tavernita is one of those huge, sceney River North spaces. I would not attempt a place like this on a weekend, so my friend Eileen and I dropped in here min-week. Our servers were many AND overbearing. Can you just let a girl eat, please? But the food was GREAT. I especially liked the escalavida (eggplant, red peppers, hazelnut romesco, goat cheese) and “greg’s meatballs” (wagyu beef pork and more hazelnut romesco.) Not a place to take your parents unless they are the hip and happening sort, but fun nonetheless. I also really like the bar, particularly if you can get a stool. The Verdict: Fun. Good fun. And good food.

Tavernita on Urbanspoon

Publican Quality Meats, 825 W Fulton Market. Dropped in for lunch one weekend afternoon and had a GREAT sandwich. I opted for “Better than a Gyro” which boasted braised pork belly, raita, escalivada, pea shoots, and calabrian chili orange vinagrette on griddled flatbread. The only let down were the homemade potato chips served with, which were oddly tasteless. Service is hip and sweet. And the price is right. (The $10 sandwich.) More of a butchershop and cafe really–definitely not a place to linger–but still cool. Ask for a tour of the prep are and meat locker downstairs. The Verdict: Great for lunch.

Blackbird, 619 W Randolph Street. My colleague and I were invited to a special networking dinner here and I was really excited about things because I think the last time I was at Blackbird was like 2006? But oh so bitterly disappointed. (Bad of me, as a guest, to complain.) Portions were eensy-weensey (and you know I’m a fan of normal sized portions) and nothing really clicked. I still want to find out what was in the butternut squash soup because it reeked of alcohol, which wasn’t mentioned anywhere on the menu. The Verdict: If you don’t go out to eat a lot, you’ll be fine here.

Blackbird on Urbanspoon

Zocalo, 358 W Ontario. My friend Christina and I dropped in here one weekend and were pleasantly surprised. Firstly, I loved the decor–all Mexican art and flowers and Frida Kahlo. Secondly, our server was awesome; I was mesmerized by his deep, deep voice. Thirdly, the food was pretty darn good. I wasn’t too experimental–I just had mixed tacos–but they were pretty awesome tacos. Also enough food for three people, but the price was right. The Verdict: Fun. I’d go back here, especially for one of their private rooms.

Zocalo on Urbanspoon

Sultan’s Market, 2057 W North Avenue. I woke up one morning, dreaming of falafel. So I went to Sultan’s, a Middle Eastern deli in Chicago’s Bucktown. And it was fine. Huge portions. It was dark though, and not in a good way. Needs an interior decorator. And a scrub brush. Too much going on. The Verdict: Meh.

Sultan's Market on Urbanspoon

Coming up…too many places to mention, really. Plus, I go back to Brazil.

5 Responses to “Some Hotspots, Chicago Edition”

  1. Food Blog ► Some Hotspots, Chicago Edition: I’m feeling very with it these days. Although I may be lagging on t… http://t.co/kUEuCj7W


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  3. Rich
    Apr 08, 2012

    Good timing, just planning a trip to Chicago at the moment! As a thought, where would you recommend my and my other half stay for a couple of days of local living? Nice neighbourhood not too far out (Chicagoan equivalent of say Stoke Newington, Camberwell or (at a push) the nice side of Clapham? We’re at the Four Seasons for a couple of days so going to do high end while there (with at least one proper destination place…) and then hoping to get into a local vibe for a bit. We were thinking Lakeview? Are we right? And if so, where should we be eating / drinking when we get there?

    thanks as always

    Rich


  4. Mark
    Apr 09, 2012

    Oh, why no pictures of all that food? :(


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