Within the first steps into Mr C's Meats and Deli in Beach Park, you'll feel perfectly at home due to their vast, well-priced selection of delectable groceries.
Whether you need some snacks for the big game or a quick dinner option, the frozen foods from here are sure to suit your needs.
For baked goods that are as delicious as they are fluffy, don't forget to pick up some fresh ingredients to make sure your creation hits it out-of-the-park.
When you have a hunger craving in between meals, these snacks will come in handy.
Every kitchen requires oil and vinegar. When you need something acidic to balance out a recipe, vinegar will do the trick, or when you need something slick to grease the pan, oil is often a cook's first choice.
If pasta is what you're in the mood for, swing by Mr C's Meats and Deli and pick up some fresh noodles.
A classic breakfast option, cereal is always good to have on hand. A box is sure to ease everyone's morning appetite without taking too much time off the clock.
For cool, refreshing H20, Mr C's Meats and Deli's got you covered.
Upgrade your barbecue by selecting from the fine meats available here.
From classic sandwiches to signature creations, the sandwiches at Mr C's Meats and Deli are sure to make your stomach happy.
Packed with essential nutrients, be sure to try walk away with some delicious fish for dinner.
Browse the selection of sandwiches at Mr C's Meats and Deli and munch your way to pure happiness.
For a cheaper, more convenient alternative, you'll want to shop the canned foods at Mr C's Meats and Deli. You won't even be able to tell the difference.
Mr C's Meats and Deli offers a range of classic and signature breads, all of which are fresh and baked to perfection.
Feeling bold and creative? Dress up your next meal with some unique and tasty seasonings and spices from here.
Loaded with essential vitamins and minerals, the produce from this store will give you the energy your body needs.
Healthy eaters realize the importance of dairy in their diet. Make sure you're getting your fill of Vitamin D with dairy products from Mr C's Meats and Deli.
Mr C's Meats and Deli can hook you up with the latest coffee and tea beverages.
A simple solution to long hours spent over the stove, a microwavable meal will trick your taste buds into thinking it was made from scratch!
Dial down your thirst with some delicious drinks that are both refreshing and cool.
No matter what time of day you visit Mr C's Meats and Deli, you can find easy in-and-out parking for your hot ride.
If cooking up a storm is something you enjoy, remember to stop at Mr C's Meats and Deli for the freshest groceries in town.
Visit The Shanty for some true American comfort food smack dab in the middle of Wadsworth's Wadsworth.
Score low-fat and gluten-free eats at The Shanty.
Be sure to complete your meal at this restaurant with a drink from the restaurant's full bar.
Youngsters are more than welcome to join mom and dad at this restaurant.
The large dining space at The Shanty provides quick and easy seating options for large groups.
Not to be overlooked is The Shanty's no-charge wifi.
The restaurant accepts reservations, so you can get around the busy crowd.
Business casual attire is acceptable, so guests can let go of the "dress to impress" standard.
Leaving the couch is half the battle. Your foods awaits your pickup at this restaurant.
Heading to The Shanty for a tasty meal? Drive on over and park in a matter of seconds.
The Shanty makes bikers feel at ease with the multiple storage racks outside.
Wallets are fragile things. That's why we don't break them. Food typically priced under $15.
Lunch and dinner are easy as pie (and you might as well get a slice) at the delicious The Shanty.
The Shanty serves up a variety of American eats in a casual setting. Swing by today and munch on some of your favorite dishes.
Make your way over to the highly-rated The Shanty and taste your way through some great American dishes.
Indulge in a wide array of American dishes at Emily's Pancake House.
Children are more than welcome to dine at this restaurant, where there's something for everyone on the menu.
At Emily's Pancake House, you can dine with your immediate family and your extended family due to the easy seating for large parties.
On busy nights, it's best to book a table ahead of time.
Emily's Pancake House tosses the jacket-and-tie dress code convention in favor of a more casual dining experience.
For those in a rush, the restaurant lets you take your food to go.
Drivers can make use of the parking lots near Emily's Pancake House.
When you're craving a true American classic, such as a burger and fries, make your way over to Emily's Pancake House.
When you're in need of a casual night out, head to Emily's Pancake House and enjoy some great American classics.
For highly-rated American cuisine, look no further than Emily's Pancake House.
BLT, club, veggie, and more...Subway serves sandwiches in Beach Park's Beach Park neighborhood.
Subway is filled with endless gluten-free and vegan options for those with special dietary needs.
The restaurant also offers catering if you want to bring the flavors of Subway to your next party or event.
Score a close parking spot at Subway.
We've got news: Great taste doesn't always come with a hefty price tag. For astonishingly affordable prices (and delicious dishes), treat your taste buds to Subway.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all available at Subway — swing by for your favorite meal.
Whether you sit down to eat or get a sandwich to go, Subway is a great place to stop by for a much-needed meal.
For fast food in Wadsworth's Wadsworth neighborhood, check out the burger menu at McDonald's.
Healthy food is in, as it should be, so come here for a tasty, low-fat and gluten-free bite.
Parking is plentiful, so patrons can feel free to bring their vehicles.
A meal so cheap, you can almost pay for it with coins, McDonald's largely serves dishes under the $15 mark.
If you can't make it in the morning, try McDonald's for lunch or dinner.
McDonald's serves up tasty burgers at a quick pace, so stop by today and enjoy a great meal.
When you need a quick and easy solution for lunch or dinner, swing by McDonald's and pick up some tasty eats.
Just off the Illinois Beach State Park, the mascot of Franks & Fries—an anthropomorphic hot dog—greets passersby with a wave of his cane and a tip of his hat. Perched on the restaurant’s red-and-yellow sign above a few outdoor tables, the mascot serves as an ambassador for the menu of cooked-to-order bites such as Chicago-style hot dogs made with 100% Vienna Beef. Along with burgers, cheesesteaks, and baskets of seasoned curly fries, cooks prepare desserts such as fried twinkies, fried Snickers bars, and fried Oreos.
Cindy Espinosa has cooked almost every dish on the menu at Nellie’s (2458 W. Division St.), the Humboldt Park luncheonette she co-owns with her husband, Pablo. Yet she’s never attempted mofongo, a dish of mashed fried plantains that’s a Puerto Rican tradition.
“I see it being made,” she said. “I know how it’s made, but I’ve never tried it.”
It’s easy to see why. The cooking process, which I watched unfold in Nellie’s kitchen, is pretty involved, with a lot of hand-mashing and frying. “It’s more of a Friday-night dinner type of thing,” Pablo said. “You might eat it once a month at home.”
Yet the final result—a dome of fried plantain that diners can moisten with a dip into housemade chicken broth—is worth the work. Here’s how Cindy and Pablo’s cook, Carmen, makes it.
Carmen first peels and chops green plantains, the same fruits used in the restaurant’s jibaritos and tostones. According to Pablo, the restaurant goes through a crate of about 50 green plantains every week.
Then Carmen tosses them into a deep-fryer with some chopped tocino, or pork lard. When the lard has cooked down to a salty, crispy crunch, she dumps it and the plantains into a type of mortar and pestle called a pilon. “Every Puerto Rican household should have one,” Cindy said. The pilon’s concave bottom is what gives a serving of mofongo its distinctive dome-like shape.
In Puerto Rico, you see “all types of sizes” of pilon, Pablo said. That includes some as large as a butter churn, which sit on the floor. Nellie’s is a tabletop model, about 6 inches tall, wooden, and covered in carvings. It makes only one portion of mofongo at a time, which can make things hectic for Carmen on a busy weekend day. (All that mashing “takes an arm,” Cindy said.)
Making mofongo to order gives the staff flexibility to tailor each serving. For instance, Carmen can leave out the tocino to make a vegetarian version of the dish. (Both Espinozas have been vegetarian for a year and a half.) Other versions on the menu include iterations with shrimp in place of tocino or with a mound of chicken, shrimp, or steak nestled inside the dome. Mofongo can also be a side order to fried chicken (chicharron de pollo) or fried pork.
I get to sample the classic, main-course version.
The mofongo dome appears next to a small silver tureen filled with housemade chicken broth for dipping. There is still a big chunk of meat and bone floating in it, as well as a big, soft carrot that I devour, savoring its umami flavors. Moistened with a little broth, the green plantains lose their fibrous dryness to become melt-in-your-mouth comfort food; the bits of tocino provide an occasional kick of salt.
I send a mental thank-you to Carmen’s arm for providing this food. I hope it was worth the work.
Photo credit: Andrew Nawrocki, Groupon
To many Chicagoans, the neighborhoods south of Roosevelt Road seem to be a culinary wasteland. To Jimalita Tillman, Chicago native and executive director of the Harold Washington Cultural Center and Performing Arts Theatre (4701 S. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr.), fine-dining opportunities definitely exist on the South Side—if you give them a chance.
Because many of these restaurants depend on word of mouth, Tillman said, the advertising budgets of their more northern competitors often trump their oral marketing, and so she often spends “all day” giving South Side restaurant recommendations to area visitors and theater-goers.
“There are many great places [to eat] throughout these areas,” she said. “It really depends on what you’re in the mood for.”
And if you're in the mood for a little musical and cultural Chicago history to pair with your meal, you don't have to travel far from the landmark arts center. The Harold Washington Cultural Center, in the former location of the historical Regal Theater where the likes of Ella Fitzgerald once performed, is right in the heart of the Black Metropolis—a region marked by the culture and Southern-inspired music scene that developed during the Great Migration. Today, Bronzeville is still flavored with leftovers from its swinging past.
To savor alongside your meal, we paired each of Tillman’s restaurant recommendations with a few musical, historical, and cultural tidbits.
4655 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Chicago, IL 60653
It’s the quick and personable service that makes this gourmet hot-dog eatery a standout, Tillman said. Of course, Chef Cliff Rome serves the usual Chicago-style hot dog, but it’s the varied wiener and burger options he creates that color H-Dogs’ menu with the fine-dining flair he perfected while studying in Paris. The Healthy Hound—a grilled veggie dog with sprouts, roasted peppers, red onions, and cucumbers—sits alongside salmon burgers, turducken sausages, and portobello-mushroom sandwiches without the least bit of tattletaling or fighting over who had the mustard first. Sweet-potato or truffle fries complete the gourmet-on-the-go experience.
Bite of History: The gourmet hot-dog diner sits in a historical building that was once known as 47th Street Marketplace. Before a 2010 fire destroyed the building, it was considered a symbol of the revitalization of Bronzeville and housed Tillman’s Spoken Word Cafe—one of the original hosts of HBO’s Def Poetry series hosted by hip-hop artist and actor Mos Def.
2. Pearl’s Place
3901 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60653
“I’m a breakfast head,” said Tillman—as are many in the crowd of diners waiting to get inside for brunch on any given Sunday. The kitchen cooks up a mix of Southern and soul food—yes, there’s a difference—but Pearl’s Place sprinkles it with the right amount of creole flavor. After sampling Pearl’s juicy yet crispy fried chicken, sautéed salmon croquettes, or all-day breakfasts of vegetable omelets or homestyle pancakes, it seems only right to finish with a bite or two of peach cobbler or sweet-potato pie.
Bite of History: The interior decor, with album jackets and vinyl records lining the walls, features a photo story of the neighborhood’s jazz and blues history with jazz legends Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and Lena Horne—all of whom graced the stage at the Regal Theater during Bronzeville’s musical heyday.
3. Norman’s Bistro
1001 E. 43rd St., Chicago, IL, 60653
The bistro’s entrees—including vegetable confetti ravioli, smoked cranberry salmon, and the Great Duck burger—offer an upscale taste-bud experience at “South Side prices,” Tillman said. From the food to the decor, presentation is an art in this sleek and classy spot featuring creole-inspired American food with a Brazilian flair. In the exposed-brick, art-filled wine bar, sommeliers pour from an extensive list of wines. Separate from the dining room, the intimate setting of the bar creates an ideal spot for the happy-hour crowd.
Bite of Culture: On Sundays at 9 p.m., the bistro hosts a live jazz jam session. Or make an appointment and walk over to Gallery Guichard—housed in a turn-of-the-20th-century Italiante row house—to peruse its African-diaspora art and blown glass, sculptures, and photography by local as well as international artists.
Photography by Andrew Nawrocki.
Clockwise from top: Birria in action—rich, briny consommé and tender goat meat, stewed for hours with bay leaves, cinnamon, and other spices. // Ceramic bowls absorb the birria's heat, keeping the broth warm throughout meals. // When Rick Bayless recommended Birrieria Reyes de Ocotlan to "Esquire" magazine, he described the eatery’s birria as "full of flavor, incredibly homey and satisfying."
In Ocotlán in Jalisco, Mexico, the temperature rarely dips below 40 degrees. That's mild by Chicago standards; however, when the Reyes family immigrated 2,000 miles from Ocotlán to Chicago, they brought with them a recipe that would prove thoroughly compatible with the colder weather. That recipe is birria—a savory stew made by simmering goat meat for hours with herbs and spices. On a cold day in mid-March, I made a trek across town to the family's Pilsen restaurant, Birrieria Reyes de Ocotlan, to taste it myself.
As soon as I entered the eatery, I smelled the warm, rich aroma of simmering goat meat. Goats were also present in the decor: miniature replicas decorated shelves and cupboards, and a mounted goat head kept watch over the booths, a toothpick dangling humorously from its lips.
After I ordered birria at the counter, a server presented me with three dishes. The smallest held pickled onions and lime wedges, which are traditional birria condiments, and an oblong basket cradled warm, fresh tortillas. The largest bowl brimmed with rich, briny consommé, chopped onions and cilantro, and hunks of tender goat meat.
The first spoonful of broth tasted bright and smoky with hints of ancho peppers and cinnamon. I separated a piece of goat meat with light pressure from my spoon. Leaner than beef, the meat still had pieces of bone inside, which infused the meat with the flavor of their marrow. The crisp onions and fragrant cilantro stood out against the birria's savory elements to create a harmony of flavors that was especially comforting on a cold day.