Eating Chicago: A New (Groan) Listicle
By Alexander Pancoe
If you’re not from Chicago, you may believe that we eat nothing besides deep-dish pizza. Our diet is more diverse than your imagination. Of course, the pizza is great, but there’s also food in Chicago that isn’t pizza. After all, we’re a big city with a broad range of culinary influences. Here’s a primer on the local flavor, as well as a list of helpful tips and some of the most adored food spots in Chicago:
- Mr. Beef. Mr. Beef serves a Chicago-style Italian beef sandwich the right way: soaking in a puddle of jus and gianardiniera. It’s a messy sandwich, but well worth it.
- If you’re looking for a good Mexican restaurant, all you have to do is walk down 18th Street in Pilsen and open a door.
- If you must have deep-dish pizza, go to Pequod’s. It’s the real deal, classic Chicago deep-dish experience.
- Hot Doug’s. Okay, hot dogs are another Chicago cliché, but this place is a must, even if the line’s really long.
- Taste of Lebanon. This no-frills Lebanese restaurant has a strong local following for their incredibly delicious lentil soup. If you close your eyes and take a bite, you might just forget that you dug it out of a Styrofoam cup with a plastic spoon.
- Chicago Diner. The vegan milkshakes are out of this world and you won’t believe they’re dairy-free. Chicago Diner’s vegan milkshakes are a hit with vegans and non-vegans alike all over Chicago.
- Logan Square Pie Shop. I recommend the Bang Bang pie.
- The Parthenon. This restaurant claims to have invented the Greek cheese speciality, flaming saganaki, a Chicago treat.
- Pho 88. This little restaurant on Argyle Street makes the best pho in Chicago, hands down.
- Borinquin Restaurant. This Humboldt Park restaurant is famous for inventing the jibarito, a Puerto Rican-inspired sandwich that uses fried plantains in place of bread.