Falafel Bistro & Wine Bar cajoles the tahini-demanding bellies of vegetarians and omnivores alike with fresh wraps, salads, baguettes, and desserts, as well as a spectrum of Mediterranean specialties. Chef and owner Ilan Cohen slings traditional family meals straight from his native Israel onto the tables of his American bistro haven. Chickpea cheerleaders can form pyramids with one of many hummus-centered dishes, such as the sabih pita sandwich, with roasted eggplant and hard-boiled egg ($8), or the mahi-mahi beet wrap, rolled with sumptuous tiers of garbanzo mash, spinach, and alfalfa ($17).
In spite of its name, Asian Tokyo takes a broad approach that combines classic Japanese and Chinese recipes on the same menu. Iconic dishes such as kung pao chicken and homemade egg rolls appear alongside chicken and salmon teriyaki. Additionally, the sushi chefs prepare orders of nigiri and sashimi as well as more than 50 different rolls, which can incorporate everything from tempura lobster and asparagus to smoked salmon and cream cheese.
Simple tables and dark wooden booths fill the earth-toned dining area. Red lanterns hang from the ceiling, casting their light across the bar's stone wall? which supports a pair of flat-screen televisions?and lending a soft, rosy glow that makes the dining room a perfect setting for a romantic date or a staged reading of Cabaret.
Across its three locations, Donati's Pizza aims to blend the best of New York?style and Chicago-style pizzerias. Folks can hunker down in the dining room for impossibly thick deep-dish pies that clock in at nearly 2 inches, which is a necessity considering the full pound of cheese that tops each one. And for a taste of Big Apple convenience, the shop slings everything from thin-crust to gluten-free pizzas by the slice?New York's one and only contribution to pizza. And with more than 30 toppings, including feta cheese, italian beef, and fresh basil, guests can customize their pizzas with gusto.
The chefs at Muscle Maker Grill put a healthy spin on flavorful dishes inspired by Italian, Asian, American, and southwestern cuisines. The chain was founded in 1995 by Rod Silva, a fitness enthusiast who grew weary of fast-food eateries that bogged customers down with unhealthy morsels and toys sculpted from butter. What began as a smoothie stand has expanded into a successful franchise that slings pastas, burgers, salads, and Tex-Mex-style wraps and proudly displays the calorie content and relationship status of each dish on the menu.
The neon lights and bright colors at Grande Jake's Fresh Mexican Grill's Chicago-area hubs hint at the menu's dedication to spicy eats. Chefs scoop grilled steak, chorizo, and chicken into burritos, then douse them in melted chihuahua cheese and salsa ranchera. Homemade tamales burst with pork or chicken, and the pollo asada al carbon tops a 12-ounce char-grilled chicken breast with mole or green sauce. Refried beans, spanish rice, and chips serve as supporting actors to entrees.