Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Saturday, September 30

Gapers Block

Gapers Block on Facebook Gapers Block on Flickr Gapers Block on Twitter The Gapers Block Tumblr

« Midweek Veggies Keep Your Greens Green »

Random Fri Jun 22 2007

Questionable Menu Items

Tilapia Reuben & Porker McGeeI met some friends at McGee's Tavern earlier this week. It wouldn't have been my first choice, but it was just fine — decent food, attentive service, and at lunch the number of drunken DePaul students was at a minimum.

As good as my chicken sandwich was, I was alarmed to see a "Tilapia Reuben" on the menu. It might be super tasty, but the thought of fried fish topped with sauerkraut, swiss cheese and thousand island dressing just didn't sound appetizing at all.

And "Porker McGee?" I'm a little afraid to put something by that name in my mouth &mdash' it sounds a little... slutty.

What questionable menu items of ridiculously named dishes have you come across in Chicagoland restaurants?

GB store

Yu / June 22, 2007 9:49 AM

"Charred Polish" sounds pretty sinister, too...

Dan Kelly / June 22, 2007 12:56 PM

Generally, "Bellybusters" (a kind of humongous patty melt, I think, which reminds me of that scene in Alien) and "Francheezies" (a hot dog with cheese?) have always freaked my shit out. I think they still serve them at Old Timers on Lake Street.

John / June 22, 2007 1:31 PM

I have never this term Francheezies, but i do love the part in Grosse Point Blank where Cusack and Dan Akyroyd sit down at the diner and the waitress is reading off the omelet choices and the last one is "I left my heart in San Francheesy"...Ha!

Andrew / June 22, 2007 1:45 PM

You've never heard of a Francheesie, John? Really? I thought it was a pretty common hot dog stand item.

Speaking of deep-fried delicacies, pizza puffs are pretty much the ultimate in questionable food choices. Delicious, but deadly.

Dan Kelly / June 22, 2007 3:04 PM

Minor correction: I was inspired to eat at Old Timers after work, and while I've seen the Francheezie and Belly Buster elsewhere, Old Timers serves the Belt Buster (A big burger on rye bread) and the Frencheezie.

Intonation makes all the difference. Just ask the French.

CookieLady / June 22, 2007 4:11 PM

without a doubt, it's the "Ghetto Fries" at Max's on Western.

Bryan Delano III / June 23, 2007 1:55 AM

Is this an appropriate place to bring up "The Slinger" from the 24 hour Diner Grill on Irving Park and Ashland (just about)?

There's a little, computer-printed poster urging diners not "to ask, just order," and another to the tune of, "slingereah: get it here, leave it there."

Ruth / June 23, 2007 6:12 PM

Of course the Confused Chicken Sandwich at Suzy's (Montrose and Elston. Go now). To say nothing of the Bermuda Triangle milkshake (1 of 54 flavors) or Blue Chez Cheese Fries (available in "an edible bowl.")

Joanne / June 24, 2007 5:47 PM

Privata Café on Ashland near Chicago has/had a dish named "Don Porko". I'm not a pork eater, so I never ventured beyond the name to the description. Use your imagination as to it's contents, I suppose.

Nick / June 24, 2007 8:29 PM

I actually had a grouper reuben tonight. They also had it in 'crab cakes' 'flounder' and 'oyster'.
It actually wasn't bad.

GB store

Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

GB store



Drive-Thru on Flickr

Join the Drive-Thru Flickr Pool.

About Drive-Thru

Drive-Thru is the food and drink section of Gapers Block, covering the city's vibrant dining, drinking and cooking scene. More...
Please see our submission guidelines.

Editor: Robyn Nisi,
Drive-Thru staff inbox:



 Subscribe in a reader.

GB store

GB Store

GB Buttons $1.50

GB T-Shirt $12

I ✶ Chi T-Shirts $15