Chicago's Most Chicago Restaurants BY: STAFF | 3.5.2014

Has it been open for generations? Does it only accept cash? From 8 finalists, we find the most Chicago restaurant in Chicago.

Making Mofongo at Nellie’s in Chicago
The owners of Nellie's in Chicago show us how to make mofongo, a classic Puerto Rican mashed and fried plantain dish.
Bronzeville Dining Destinations
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.
Last-Minute Lifehack: DIY Slotted Spoon
Easter-egg dyeing only happens once a year—so it’s no surprise if you find yourself short a few necessary tools. Here’s how we improvised an impromptu slotted spoon to dip eggs in spring colors without leaving a mark. (That’s what happens to us whenever we use tongs alone.)
Fresh Picks: Convenient But Not Conventional
People, plants, then profits. That’s the hierarchy of concerns for Irv Cernauskas and Shelly Herman, whose eco-conscious grocery service, Fresh Picks, delivers roughly 20,000 pounds of local and organic produce weekly to homes across Chicagoland. Though they fill out their selection with out-of-state organic purchases, many of Fresh Picks’ suppliers are local. In 2012, Shelly said, they purchased more than $750,000 worth of produce directly from small area farms. For instance, on their website, customers can currently order sweet scarlet or gold turnips from Harmony Valley Farm in Viroqua, Wisconsin, and russet or yukon gold potatoes from Igl Farms in Antigo, Wisconsin.
Savory Sweets at Katherine Anne Confections
Flecks of sea salt scattered over buttery caramel. Balsamic vinegar drizzled over berries and ice cream. Chili-pepper-infused chocolate. Opposites attract—or so goes the saying. But opposites don't really attract. They just work well together by balancing out each other's extremes and emphasizing unique characteristics by means of contrast. This concept holds especially true when it comes to savory desserts, a foodie trend that has swept America in recent years.
Get Your Goat: A Taste of Traditional Goat Stew at Birrieria Reyes de Ocotlan
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.
What Wines You'll Be Drinking: The Impending Rise of South African Wine
Wine can be a fickle business. Although French champagne may never fall out of favor, other varietals and styles do surge in popularity from time to time. "What I see on the horizon is the emergence of South Africa," said Steve Patun, the manager and wine buyer of Fine Wine Brokers in Chicago. He believes that there are three main reasons for this imminent rise.
Joe Meno on Where a Writer Eats
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Five Spots for Food and Drink Post-Pitchfork Music Festival
After exiting the gates at Union Park this weekend, the first thing on your mind will likely be finding a place to sit down. These five destinations offer a place to rest your feet, have a drink, eat deep-fried bacon, and maybe even break into a bank vault—if that’s your thing. If not, there’s always dancing.
B’Gabs Goodies in Woodlawn: One of Chicago’s Most Chicago Restaurants
How do you find Chicago's most Chicago restaurant? You begin by taking the world's best decision-making device: the bracket. Then you combine it with Chicago's best device to represent its messy, opinionated landscape: the ward map. Some have called this pursuit "patently absurd." We humbly disagree. By taking our logic above (bracket + ward map) and extrapolating it into a larger, totally airtight algorithm, our computers have found a winner for the title of Chicago's most Chicago restaurant. See the finalists and read more about the search here. Below is one of the finalists.
Five Orchards for Autumn Apple Picking Near Chicago
The Pastrami Sandwich at Dillman's in River North
I knew, growing up, that pastrami should be thick-cut. This, even though I lived far from anywhere you’d want to eat a pastrami sandwich. Northern Virginia doesn’t have many delis, at least not the type that would carefully brine, boil, and smoke their own meats. I can count the pastrami sandwiches I’ve eaten in my lifetime on one hand.
How Longman & Eagle's Chef Cooks With Pumpkin
From nontraditional spice blends to exotic oils, Chef Jared Wentworth of Chicago's Michelin-starred restaurant Longman & Ealge finds original uses for fall's most famous fruit.
A Travel Guide to Eataly
Although the nation of Eataly only gained statehood a week ago, it’s already become a popular destination for tourists. Here are our tips and tricks for enjoying your visit to Chicago’s only independent food kingdom.
Chowing Down Before Race Day: A Nutritionist's Guide to Marathon Training
Registered dietitian Jenny Maloney teaches us how to eat during marathon training and gives some suggestions for carbo-loading right before race day.
Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches in Chicago
Check out Chicago's best spots for grilled cheese sandwiches!
The Best Chicago Restaurants With A View
Check out the best Chicago restaurants with gorgeous views.
The Best Restaurants for a Girls Night Out
This post features great restaurants in Chicago to have a Girl’s Night Out!
9 of the Best Bottomless Brunches in Chicago
There’s no shortage of great brunch spots in Chicago, but if you’re looking to celebrate with the best all-you-can-drink deals, look no further than these 9 Best Bottomless Brunches in Chicago!