The Gomez family members first chose to share their family-style Mexican cooking with the Chicagoland area in 1992, founding Los Arcos Mexican Grill. Currently, the family's restaurant empire includes four locations, each of which shares a similar dedication to Mexican and Tex-Mex comfort foods. The chefs make all of the tamales and soups in-house, rounding out the selection with a traditional assortment of tacos, burritos, tortas, fajitas, tostadas, chimichangas, and more. However, they also demonstrate their willingness to create inventive new dishes. This is readily apparent in the menu's signature item: the hollowed out half of a grilled pineapple filled with pineapple pieces, onion, red peppers, jalapeños, and either shrimp and octopus or chicken and skirt steak.
Before they were moms with six children between them, Simply Homemade owners Cindy and Stephanie were food-industry professionals, studying nutrition and food-product development. Now, they've combined both experiences to create a company that supplies healthy, handcrafted meals to busy families. Working off of a monthly menu of 22 entrees, the duo whips up mouthwatering pastas, burgers, and kebabs chock-full of whole grains, hand-trimmed chicken, and natural beef from Heartland Meats. Then, they either preassemble meals for customers to pick up or set up ingredients for customers to assemble themselves onsite. The latter option, which takes about two hours, makes it easier for customers to tailor dinners to a child's love of mushrooms or a dog's disdain for cilantro.
Zeppe's Italian Market is modeled after the diverse, gourmet-focused markets found in Italy. Dedicated to bestowing customers with the freshest ingredients they can find, Zeppe's staff painstakingly prepare handmade take and bake meals, cannoli, and slice deli meats and cheeses at the moment they're ordered to keep them as flavorful as possible. The market also sells five homemade sauces that star a bevy of flavors, including the portobello mushrooms and bell peppers of the garden sauce and the creamy tomato notes and strident requests for a martini olive radiating from the vodka sauce. Zeppe's team of culinary masters also features freshly baked goods from Palermo Bakery and specialty grocery items imported from across the pond.
Adi Mor opened the first Garden Fresh Market in 1980, selling fresh produce from a 1,000-square-foot lot in Skokie, which he would stock by taking 2 a.m. trips to Chicago's South Water market. Today, Garden Fresh Market sprawls over six suburban locations, where fresh produce from apples to zucchinis is still procured daily.
Grocery items range from fresh meat from Midwest famers to a wide selection of ethnic foods and national brands. The deli slices meats and cheeses both domestic and imported, and house-made seasonal salads and main courses make bringing dinner home easier than stealing it from a neighbor's windowsill. Many of the market's online recipes have even made it onto NBC5, giving its cooks their share of 15 minutes of fame.
The doctors and staff at Integrated Physical Medicine treat a broad range of ailments by way of chiropractic techniques, physical therapy, therapeutic massage, and more. By taking a 360-degree approach—which entails applying a variety of treatment techniques to any given problem—the pros customize their rehabilitation methods in order to repair injuries and strengthen individuals’ defenses against future pain.
Built to evoke the spirit of an open-air European marketplace, Standard Market celebrates the possibilities of fresh, artisanal foods. Thanks to relationships with small farmers and producers throughout the Midwest, the shelves stay stocked with products that are either grown or crafted within 300 miles of the store. Even the selection of more than 200 cheeses favors American products, a fact that appealed to the Chicagoist when it named Standard Market one of the five best cheese shops In Chicago.
This local fare appears alongside items imported from abroad, but the freshest products of all are the ones made in-house. In the bakery, staff prepare more than 35 kinds of artisan breads from scratch every morning. Elsewhere, butchers dry-age beef, make their own sausages, and smoke their own bacon. The display cases even showcase pastas made from scratch with a pasta machine imported from Italy via giant slingshot.
In addition to celebrating artisanal ingredients, Standard Market also features a casual grill area where visitors can enjoy a quick meal made using the same meats and produce found on the shelves. Hearty burgers, hand-tossed pizzas, and meal-sized salads help keep hunger pangs at bay before visitors move on to inspect the shop's selection of more than 500 wines and 150 beers from every corner of the world.