Known for its generous portions and expansive menu, The Lunch Box Spot is a perennial favorite for midday munchers and noontime nibblers. Between-the-slice options are always served on The Lunch Box Spot's freshly baked bread and are constructed using layers of high-quality sliced meat and fresh-faced fillings. Hot subs (4", $4.69; 8", $7.29; 12" $9.29) breach the surface with options such as the chicken alfredo, which places alfredo-sauced chicken fingers atop a bed of spinach with tomato and red-onion pillows. Specialty sandwiches ($6.59) mosey into the culinary corral with the Southwestern (sliced chicken breast cooped up inside a pita with munster cheese, lettuce, tomato, and bacon-ranch dressing). Burgers pack a punch with a variety of 1/3 pounders ($3.99–$5.69), such as the black and blue burger, whose Cajun seasonings and crumbled blue cheese agreed to make peace after a court-ordered flavor-management class. Hunger-fighting sidekicks include finger-lickers such as fried mushrooms with blue cheese ($3.49), as well as a variety of homemade side salads ($1.69–$2.39).
The Classy Cookie & Deli boasts an eclectic menu befitting any occasion, from quick lunches for on-the-go eaters to excessively slow meals meant to put off the evening's grueling ticklefights. Mother and daughter team Helene Weaver and Heidi Kornrich use their familial telepathy to silently collaborate on items such as the CC Special ($5.50), a quarter pound of roast beef served on a roll with cheese, lettuce, and Russian dressing and accompanied by a cookie for dessert, or a chicken-salad sandwich ($4.25) or sub ($5.25), served with lettuce and tomato on your choice of white, wheat, rye, or pumpernickel bread. Mouth-warming hot sandwiches stoke food-fueled fires of self-actualization—make friends with the meatball sub with mozzarella ($5.25) or dig into the dijon-laced hot pastrami and swiss cheese ($5.25). After lunch, guests can calm uppity stomachs with a dozen old-fashioned cookies ($5.50) or a slice of Southern Comfort whiskey cake ($2.75/slice).
With native Italian chefs at the helm, Portofino’s extensive dinner menu sates stomachs with authentic Italian dishes and an extensive wine list. Like chili popsicles and videos of grizzly-bear ballerinas, Italian food is enjoyed around the world due to its versatility and heartiness. Appetizers, such as cozze marinara—mussels simmered in a marinara sauce ($7.95), pave the way for entrees such as fettucini portobello topped with goat cheese, mushrooms, zucchini, and tomato ($14.95). Or sample pizzas such as the margherita ($9.95) or the quattro stagione with salami, artichokes, mushrooms, and bell peppers ($14.95). The steak Portofino, which weighs in at 14 ounces and maintains a strict pre-fight ritual of mingling with portobello mushrooms and a red-wine sauce ($23.95), pairs well with a glass of Straccali chianti ($7) or the house select pinot noir ($6). Tiramisu layers coffee-soaked ladyfingers and cream ($6) for a decadent finish to any meal alongside a glass of Voga pinot grigio ($8).
A privately owned delicatessen and lunch bistro for more than 80 years, Swan Market delivers deliciously umlauted deli meats with an authentic German sensibility. The market's staff makes every sausage on the lunch menu by hand and also hand-slices all cold cuts using well-placed karate chops. Prime rusty palates with a sausage appetizer before feasting on hearty schnitzel, sauerbraten, or the most German dish of all: Hungarian goulash. Edible addendums of potato salad, sauerkraut, and spaetzle will further insulate ribs against winter chills and misfired cannonballs. And like a good German restaurant or bad German daycare center, Swan Market keeps a slate of imported Deutsch beers on tap ($3.50/glass, $12/pitcher). Lunch items are typically between $7 and $8. Most of Swan Market's wares can also be bought for $4.99 to $7.99 per pound at its deli counter.
For more than 25 years, Tasteful Connections Catering has outfitted events with spreads of artfully plated cuisine ranging delicate finger fare to hearty steak roasts, customized to meet specific party themes. Equipped with all the tools necessary to craft a memorable event—from the plates to the glassware to the ice sculpture of Arnold Schwarzenegger—the expert staff transforms offices and backyards into sophisticated partyscapes. The caterers are also armed to furnish larger events such as weddings, setting up bars and china and arranging for flowers, décor, and entertainment.