ЇЖА, ЯКА СТАЛА ВІЗИТНОЮ КАРТКОЮ ІЛЛІНОЙСУ
Якщо говорити про знакову їжу, Іллінойс – це більше, ніж піца з френч фрайзом та хот-доги з салатом. Завдяки різноманітному населенню, це також кулінарна одісея, яка чекає, коли її відкриють і оцінять.
Тож вибрайте й відкривайте для себе знакові страви Іллінойсу.
Тут представлені найбільш квінтесенціальні страви в нашому штаті – і найкращі місця для їх оцінки.
1. Lou Malnati’s
6649 N Lincoln Ave
Lincolnwood, IL 60712
The Malnati Chicago Classic: Chicago is synonymous with deep dish pizza and Lou Malnati’s famed pies are a glorious overload of cheese and carbs that no true Chicagoan is ashamed of loving. The Malnati Chicago Classic takes it to the next level with a layer of lean sausage patty atop an oh-so-good buttercrust.
2. Eli’s Cheesecake Bakery Cafe
6701 W Forest Preserve Ave
Chicago, IL 60634
Cheesecake: Even though Eli’s no longer has a downtown presence (they closed in 2005), Chicagoans still crack a smile when they’re served a slice of tradition. A special shout-out to the chocolate-covered cheesecake on a stick served at the Taste of Chicago.
3. Gene & Jude’s
2720 River Rd
River Grove, IL 60171
Depression Dog: There are plenty of places for a Chicago-style dog, but Gene & Jude’s does it a bit differently by dumping a heap of fries over the encased meat.
4. Johnnie’s Beef
7500 W North Ave
Elmwood Park, IL 60707
Italian Beef: There will be much handwringing over the best version of a beef. Hot or sweet peppers? Dry or au jus? Johnnie’s two locations boast a small menu but everything is executed to perfection. For an even bigger option, try the combo – an Italian sausage topped with shredded beef.
5. Papa’s Cache Sabroso
2517 W Division St
Chicago, IL 60622
Jibarito: The jibarito is a Humboldt Park classic created by Puerto Ricans. They take two slices of plantains, use them like bread, and pack the sandwich with deliciousness. And love. Pick between chicken, steak, and veggie fillings.
6. Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House
1024 N Rush St
Chicago, IL 60611
Shrimp DeJonghe: Shrimp DeJonghe was first served in Chicago in 1923. It’s simple: Shrimp, garlic, breadcrumbs, and either wine or sherry.
7. Garrett Popcorn Shops
625 N Michigan Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
Garrett Mix: No list would be complete without mentioning Illinois’ official snack food. The famous popcorn chain offers many addictive flavors but the patented Garrett Mix is always a fine choice, combining sweet CaramelCrisp with savory Cheesecorn.
8. Gene & Georgetti
500 N Franklin St, Chicago
Broiled T-Bone Steak: Chicago’s meat-packing history gives the city a variety of upscale steakhouse options. The steak at Gene & Georgetti’s is wet-aged for about 30 days. There’s nothing fancy about the presentation – the meat’s simply unseasoned and broiled. Hey, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
9. Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse
33 W Kinzie St
Chicago, IL 60654
Chicken Vesuvio: The origins of the dish remain murky, but most agree it’s a Chicago creation. Harry Caray’s version is a solid introduction for both locals and tourists alike.
615 W Randolph St, Chicago
Chorizo-Stuffed Medjool Dates: One Off Hospitality Group’s Mediterranean restaurant is consistently one of Chicago’s most popular destinations. That’s in part due to the “life-changing” dates stuffed with chorizo, wrapped with bacon, and served with piquillo pepper sauce.
11. Manny’s Cafeteria & Delicatessen
1141 S Jefferson St, Chicago
Corned Beef Sandwich: Manny’s is the stuff that legends are made of, so folks should sink their teeth into its famous corned beef.
12. Jim’s Original Hot Dog
1250 S Union Ave, Chicago
Maxwell Street Polish: While hot dogs get all the glory, the Maxwell Street Polish – a kielbasa topped with mustard, grilled onions, and sport peppers – quietly satisfies Chicagoans.
13. Albano’s Pizzeria
5913 W Roosevelt Rd
Cicero, IL 60644
Pizza Puff: As one Yelper proclaims: “They don’t have pizza puffs here. They have GOD puffs.” Pizza puffs are a Chicago invention and Iltaco Foods is the item’s largest manufacturer. Venture out to Cicero for a hearty homemade version.
14. Fat Johnnie’s Famous Red Hots
7242 S Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60636
Mother-in-Law: The Chicago-style hot dog gets a unique twist at this South Side stand. Fat Johnnie’s signature Mother-in-Law features a cornmeal tamale on a bun smothered with chili, onions, tomatoes, green relish, and cucumber slices. Don’t ask how, it just works.
15. Lem’s BBQ House
311 E 75th St
Chicago, IL 60619
Rib Tips: Rib tips are an often overlooked barbecue specialty but this old-school joint puts the spotlight on them. They’re cooked in a customized aquarium smoker – the largest in the city – and smothered in a vinegary sauce for a tender, chewy cut that requires getting a little messy.
16. Stony Sub
8440 S Stony Island Ave
Chicago, IL 60617
Gym Shoe: It’s unclear where the sandwich was first created but this South Side shop is one of its most well-known purveyors. Despite the odd name, the Gym Shoe is a delicious trifecta of roast beef, gyro meat, and corned beef. That’s not all, though, as the hearty concoction is mixed with giardiniera, sweet peppers, onions, tzatziki sauce, tomatoes, mayo, and Swiss cheese.
17. Taurus Flavors
8534 S Stony Island Ave
Chicago, IL 60617
Sweet steak: Chicago’s counterpart to Philly cheesesteak is a sweet variant from the South Side. While it’s not as widely known as Italian beef, this hoagie – sporting coarsely-chopped rib eye, onions, American cheese, sweet peppers, tomatoes, and a signature sweet sauce – has earned a loyal following and long lines outside the restaurant are common.
18. Vito & Nick’s
8433 S Pulaski Rd
Chicago, IL 60652
Tavern-Style Pizza: Deep dish gets all of the attention but tavern-style pizza is as, if not more, integral to Chicago’s culinary identity. This Eater 38 institution produces the finest thin crust in town, topping the crunchy dough with ingredients like sausage, sliced beef, anchovies, and shrimp. And in true Chicago fashion, the pies are best enjoyed with a cold pint of Old Style.
19. Rainbow Cone
9233 S Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60643
Rainbow Cone: Why choose one flavor when Chicagoans can have them all? This South Side institution has been scooping its unique cones for nine decades. The namesake Rainbow Cone is a combination of orange sherbet with chocolate, strawberry, Palmer House (New York vanilla with cherries and walnuts), and pistachio ice creams that both kids and adults can’t get enough of.
20. Calumet Fisheries
3259 E 95th St
Chicago, IL 60617
Smoked Fish: Smokehouses are a dying breed but this legendary spot has been around since 1948 and is still delivering some of the best fish in town. Fresh seafood is wood-smoked on-site and the finished products, such as salmon, trout, and fried shrimp, are well worth a trip down to the city limits.