Since its establishment in 1936, Schaefer's has acquired a wealth of notoriety for its comprehensive yet complex assortment of complementary flavors. The drinkporium stocks hundreds of bottles of globally acquired wines, and fills aisles with unusual and exotic beers. The spirits department lines up anything from top-shelf whiskey to high-proof elixirs. And the gourmet goods section hosts fine, finger-friendly apps and pairables, such as imported French Saint-André cheese ($14.99 per lb.), Cacciatore artisan salami ($18.99), chocolates, and dips, making customers want to hold back a few shillings in their satchels. Because Schaefer's maintains its commitment to diversity and quality, items such as wine, beer, and liquor bottles range from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars each.
Featured on the Today show for its friendly and courteous staff, Grand Food Center stocks pots and pantries with essential staples teeming with taste and freshness. An expansive organic section, including fresh produce and packaged products such as Newman's Own organic lemonade and items from Amy's and Morning Star Farms, makes for palate-pleasing meals free of pesticides and genetically modified organisms. Dozens of delicious items are made in-house, including freshly smoked salmon and roast beef, homemade deli creations—from crispy kettle potato chips to ready-made sushi ($3.99–$9.99)—and baked goods such as cookies and specialty cakes emerging warm from in-store ovens like a mother's sentient gingerbread monster.
The Burhop family keeps their fish markets stocked with just-caught, never-frozen goods. They do this by going right to the source—wholesale distributors in Alaska, Hawaii, New England, and as far away as Australia. Their connections with these distributors stretch over the course of Burhop's 88-year history, which started when Albert "Pops" Burhop founded a wholesale-seafood business in downtown Chicago. When locals started offering him money and moon rocks in exchange for the prized cuts of fish, Pops decided to cut out the middleman.
Today, they proudly report that many of their loyal customers are transplants from the East and West Coasts, where fresh seafood is easier to come by. Ironically, Burhop's gets fresher stuff than many stores on the coasts do, thanks to Chicago's central location, which enables quick shipping from all of America's shores. In the shop, customers can watch as the filleters skillfully ply their craft. Get to know your Burhop’s fish mongers! A series of online video tutorialss teach home chefs to prep mouthwatering lobster tails, soft shell crabs, tuna burgers, and more.