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, May 18

Gapers Block

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


Andrew / October 25, 2004 11:14 AM

I've been exploring Devon Avenue lately. I heartily recommend Afghan Restaurant, 2818 W. Devon. Excellent food, copious and cheap.

Naz / October 25, 2004 11:24 AM

While I was introduced to Kiki's (a French Bistro) a while ago, I went there this past weekend and was reminded yet again of how good the food is, and how very affordable (for French at least) it is.

Thurston / October 25, 2004 11:34 AM

I am a big fan of Irazu, a Costa Rican restaurant on Milwaukee a few blocks south of Armitage. Great value, good for carnivores and herbivores alike, and it's a BYOB. The cuisine is similar to Mexican but less spicy and more dependent on vegetables like beets, cabbage, yuca, cauliflower, etc. Great fruit shakes too.

Ken / October 25, 2004 11:39 AM

Mod for brunch is a hidden gem; nice to go somewhere on a Sunday at 11:30 that isn't ridiculously packed.

Hema's Kitchen II on Clark, however, was a big disappointment IMO, given all the recent hype it's gotten.

Michael / October 25, 2004 11:53 AM

Kabul House (located in Skokie, and more recently in Lincoln Park) has great Afghan food. Tango Sur on Southport is great for Argentinian beef. And I recently went to Biasetti's for the first time (near Irving Park/Ashland), and they have great ribs -- go on Monday nights when they have the $12.95 special.

len / October 25, 2004 12:06 PM

Today I'm trying, for the first time, the vegetable tempura udon at Tokyo Lunchbox on Wells and Van Buren - utterly delicious.

margot / October 25, 2004 12:59 PM

Cousin's on Broadway is a recent favorite. Cheap and consistently good.

jakze / October 25, 2004 1:47 PM

frankie j's in uptown is some tasty-ass sunday brunchification. salmon eggs benedict!! *drool* its grandilomentitudinous deliciosity will thrill you all the way down to your delicatesticles. :)

deniz / October 25, 2004 1:48 PM

oh my goodness-
if you are ever in Hyde Park (or if you never leave it) you must eat at Rajun Cajun which is on 53rd and I believe Kimbark- it's right across Noodles etc.
delicious Indian food, vegetarian options and great music. though don't forget to tell them you're dissapointed that they serve in styrofoam dishes.. :(

Mike / October 25, 2004 2:03 PM

El Nandu, really good Argentinian food. Located in a terrible spot though, way out on the "Logan Square Highway" (2731 W. Fullerton). They got Argentinian beer, amazing appetizers and a really chilled out atmosphere.
Warning: if you're not familiar with Chilean/Argentinian food, it's basically vegetarian hell. Good for the rest of us though.

miss ellen / October 25, 2004 2:11 PM

oooh, that reminds me, i haven't had any empanadas lately. time to hit up El Nandu.

haven't really stumbled upon anything "new" lately, but thanks for the thread.

Benjy / October 25, 2004 2:31 PM

I had three incredible meals this weekend (one repeat visit, two new places):

Mon Ami Gabi - French bistro, great mussels

Amarind's - Oak Park Thai restaurant, food and presentation of upscale restaurant at normal Thai restaurant prices

Opera - upscale Chinese, incredible lobster bisque w/ mango salsa, kung pao beef made with NY strip steak...

Sadaizy / October 25, 2004 3:07 PM

I loooove Volare on Grand for Italian food. I would set up house there if they'd let me. Highly recommended & well within anyone's budget.

leah / October 25, 2004 3:58 PM

El Nandu's empanadas rule my world. I wouldn't call the location terrible--there's always plenty of parking and it's near public transportation. It's not Egypt, just Logan Square. :)

Teddy / October 26, 2004 8:27 AM

Its not new, but I have realized a lot of Chicagoans hav never been there...

Lou Mitchell's
565 W. Jackson Blvd

I highly recommend it to anyone who has never been there. A lot of Chicagoans recommend the Original Pancake House, but the food and atmoshphere at Lou Mitchell's is just better overall.

Any other rec's on Breakfast joints?

Thurston / October 26, 2004 8:59 AM

I dig LT's on Grand and Wood for breakfast. They have a quiche of the day, which is always quote good, and I don't feel that my manhood is threatened for admitting as much.

Al / October 26, 2004 9:37 AM

Dude! I have to second deniz's reco of Rajun Cajun in Hyde Park. I used to live a block away from that place and it took a lot of will not to eat there every day. (BTW Deniz, I've been in there before and seen people bring their own containers to take away the food, you might try that)

Also- I love Lou Mitchell's. Been going there with my grandpa since I was a kid. Their pancakes melt in your mouth.

I also LOVE orange on harrison. The food is spectacular (esp the pancake flight) and the space is so big that even if there is a long line i've never waited for more than 20 minutes for a table. and the service is casual and friendly.

Lastly, I have to say I really enjoyed Green Zebra. As a vegetarian it's really nice to have some place that respects our cuisine. It's pricey, so try and go on someone else's dime.

Michael / October 26, 2004 9:51 AM

Teddy - as Al said,Orange is great for breakfast (although I frequent the original Wrigleyville location), and also in Wrigleyville, Salt -N- Pepper is great for cheap, retro diner-style breakfasting. Haven't been yet, but I hear the MCA has a great Sunday brunch...

Joe / October 26, 2004 10:52 AM

Tre Kroner on Foster and Kedzie right across from North Park University is one of the best breakfast/brunch spots in all of chicago. A true hidden gem. So true in fact that I almost didnt want to let anyone in on this great brunch spot. Check it out, everything on the menu is cheap and great. And the primarily Sweedish wait staff is a hit too.

eep / October 26, 2004 11:48 AM

My friend took me to De Pasada, a little hole-in-the-wall Mexican place, this weekend that was GREAT. It's on Ashland about two blocks south of Division on the west side of the road (just south of Dusty Groove America). They have chile relleno tacos there that are great, and the food is incredibly cheap.

Naz / October 26, 2004 12:37 PM

Tre Kronor's been out of the bag for a while now.

sz / October 26, 2004 1:45 PM

Skip the MCA brunch. It's just buffet-style stuff that you can get at the Fairfield Inn. Really disappointing.

Latest faves: eating at the bar at Avec, Green Zebra (sooo worth the hype), and Menagerie on Belmont (not the best location, but the food is outstanding, chef/owner is very cool, and you can BYOB corkage-free).

Seth Zurer / October 26, 2004 1:55 PM

Sticky Rice Northern Thai on Western just north of Armitage gets my vote for most interesting recent opening. Be sure to ask for the translated thai language menu to get the full effect. I've especially liked the Khao Soy (Chiang Mai style curry soup with noodles and chicken), the Mussel Fritter (a vietnameseish crispy seafood pancake), and the northern sausage (Sai Ua). For more on this one, check this thread on LTHForum -

LTHForum, btw, will be on 848 this Thursday at some point between 10 and 11 AM on WBEZ. Me and some other regular posters were interviewed by Steve Dolinsky last week, along with the editors of the new Slow Food Chicago guide.

miss ellen / October 26, 2004 2:19 PM

mr. zurer, you got me very excited about the new thai opening. but, when i went to the LTH thread, i think you misspoke on the "just north of armitage" part, as it reads 4018 n. western.

still good to know, just not quite as close as i thought....

Mike / October 26, 2004 4:49 PM

A little off topic, but I read that Sultan's Market is opening a second location at Palmer and California. Don't know when, but if it's true, that is definitly good news.

a-dub / October 26, 2004 7:35 PM

Yen's on Clark near Diversey is AMAZING.

Seth Zurer / October 27, 2004 1:29 PM

Ooops! I meant Irving Park, but was smoking too much of the crack.

miss ellen / October 28, 2004 5:05 PM

damn, the thread isn't current anymore, but that news about sultan's market has me very excited. i never seem to get there anymore, now that i'm up in logan square -- that might solve my dilemna, though!

GB store

Recently on Fuel

Urban Ethos [26]
What is Chicago's "urban ethos"?

Cool Glass of... [16]
What're you drinking?

Supreme Decision [22]
What's your reaction to the Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act?

Taking it to the Streets [20]
Chicago Street Fairs: Revolting or Awesome?

I Can Be Cruel [9]
Be real: what is the meanest thing you've ever done?

View the complete archive

GB Store

GB Buttons $1.50

GB T-Shirt $12

I ✶ Chi T-Shirts $15