I'm glad I finally decided to visit Chicago again, after a 11 year hiatus. There are soooo many great eats and everything I ate on my trip was fantastic. I made the conscious decision to stay out of downtown for most of my trip and really tried to explore the neighborhoods outside of the loop. STAY: My friend Scott is from Chicago and he went on to Airbnb and found me this place. The neighborhood, the house, and my Airbnb hosts were all awesome. My Airbnb hosts are super nice and considerate. They had left a small heater on in the room when I arrived so it was quite cozy and perfect. We chatted a bit the next day and they even invited me to a dance party. The location of their house is great if you're into eating delicious fried chicken and pies and duck fat biscuits. I would probably move into Logan Square, if I ever decide to move to Chicago.
EAT: My main focus on this trip was to just eat. Eat until I couldn't eat no more. And then when I couldn't eat no more, I would go drink. So here are all the places I ate and drank at. The above picture is the hot chicken from Parson's Chicken & Fish. Boy oh boy. It was not quite as mouth burning as I wanted but still mega good. Their chicken sandwich was good as well. It was the first thing I ate, after dropping my stuff off at my Airbnb.
Just a block from my Airbnb, I ended going 3 times. Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits, as you can tell from their name, has pies and biscuits and also grits and sausages and bacon and pot pies. I was lucky enough to get the chance to hang out with Michael, the owner, and his crew in the kitchen (check out my behind-the-scenes photos). And then proceeded to try and eat everything on the menu.
When you're on a life long fried chicken project, you'll go and search for some when you're in another city. I walked 20mins from Logan Square to Avondale for Honey Butter Fried Chicken. I got the 2 piece meal with corn muffin and a side of mac n'cheese. Really worth that 20min trek.
The plan was to get a snack at Publican Quality Meats and then an early dinner at Little Goat but I ended up getting the hot charcuterie plate that had 3 housemade sausages, fried potatoes, and peppers. The plate was a full on meal and it was delicious as heck. After that, I took a nap and totally did not go to Little Goat.
Tacos from Big Star in Wicker Park were good but not great. My least favorite bite from my trip.
Deviled eggs at The Allis. Great little snack with a glass of negroni. The Allis is beautiful, a nice place to just sit and maybe enjoy some afternoon tea.
Lost Lake. I would live here if it was possible. My Airbnb hosts had warned me about how strong the drinks were at this tiki bar. So when I went there on Saturday night, I made sure to only have 2 drinks.
Just a short walk from Lost Lake is Longman & Eagle. Lots of people had described this place as the Chicago version of The Spotted Pig. Though, it gave me more of a Prime Meats sort of feel. I came here specifically for their fried chicken and it did not disappoint. Served with some duck fat biscuits. Also this is the place where I also had a pint of Old Style with a shot of Malort. Something my friend, Scott, said I should drink for a true local flavor.
On Sunday, I headed back to north Logan Square, just around the corner from Lost Lake for some chilly Sunday night ramen action. My friend, Jose, had pointed me towards Yusho. On Sundays, they offer a $25 meal that includes beer, ramen, and dessert.
And then about 10 blocks east, I walked to L'Patron for some really REALLY delicious tacos. Lengua and chorizo are my base tacos to try at any new place. I love that the lengua was chopped into big chunks and the chorizo had some kick to it.
On my last night, I trekked over to west loop to Bernie's Lunch & Supper. Molly showed me an instagram picture of this place because I asked her about good hummus in Chicago. And this was good (not as good as Dizengoff in Philly though). Crispy warm buttery pitas with ground lamb, pine nuts, and pomegranate seeds. Good stuff.
On my way out of Chicago, I made a quick stop at Doughnut Vault. I saw this place in an episode of Parts Unknown. They have few flavors and I ended up getting a pistachio one.
And finally, I left an hour early for the airport because I made a 40min detour to this place, Pleasant House Bakery. The owners used to be part owners of Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits and after trying the food at Bang Bang, I knew this would be good. The steak and ale pie was delicious. Flaky crust. I added a side of peas with mint. You gotta have peas with steak pies, I think.
Between meals, I took the opportunity to snap some photos of Chicago. I visited the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Lake Michigan, the Riverfront, the Bean, and walked the 606 trail from Logan Square to Wicker Park. Sadly, the 360 Chicago was closed for a private event when I attempted to visit. Next time I guess.
---------------------------------------------- Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits, 2051 N California Ave.
Parson's Chicken & Fish, 2952 W Armitage Ave.
Honey Butter Fried Chicken, 3361 N Elston Ave.
Big Star, 1531 N Damen Ave.
Lost Lake, 3154 W Diversey Ave.
Longman & Eagle, 2657 N Kedzie Ave.
Publican Quality Meats, 825 W Fulton Market
Yusho, 2853 N Kedzie Ave.
L'Patron, 2815 W Diversey Ave.
Bernie's Lunch & Supper, 660 N Orleans St.
Doughnut Vault, multiple locations
Pleasant House Bakery, 964 W 31st St.
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, 220 E Chicago Ave.