Of all the Cheap Eats guides I've put together, this was easily the most personal. I've lived in Logan Square for the past five years, so I feel like I've amassed some serious first hand knowledge of the affordable options.
'lula cafe' on Serious Eats
Here in Chicago, date night doesn't have to be pressed button downs and boring chain restaurants. Date night is a chance to have a shared experience- to try something new. I can't think of any better place to begin than the newly renovated Logan Square neighborhood standby, Lula Café.
What is it about breakfast sausage and eggs in the morning? Sure, there is something simple and satisfying about the combination, but we're guessing it goes deeper. Perhaps it's that, besides maybe a hot dog, breakfast sausage is the first sausage most of us eat as children.
With the proliferation of cocktail bars and cocktail-conscious restaurants in Chicago, there are dozens of rye cocktails to be had here, especially during this time of year, when meager temperatures demand that restorative sensation of heat rye drinks so generously provide. But around town, many rye drinks are darn good, while others are just ok. As a service to ourselves, I say, let's not waste a drop of precious rye on anything short of great.
Still sparkling from its makeover, Lula is pulling off the impressive: it's the neighborhood veteran that also feels brand new.
Though her bulgogi is made with seared tofu instead of beef, Jill Barron isn't a vegetarian. She's lived in Logan Square for 12 years, and she recently shared her favorite spots in the neighborhood.
Brunch is the great unifier, a meal specifically designed for everyone. But when we asked our contributors to pick out their favorite spot to brunch, every single person picked a different place. We're taking this to mean that there has never been a better time to brunch in town, as these many great picks prove.
Every once in a while you come across a sandwich that so grabs your attention that you wonder whether you'd ever want to eat anything else. We asked all of our contributors to pick out their favorite sandwich in Chicago, and the picks are as diverse as you'd expect, from gut-busting behemoths to nicely proportioned ones.
Last night, some of the best chefs in Chicago set up shop in Lincoln Park for the Green City Market's Chefs' BBQ Benefit, which helps raise money for educational initiatives at the market. The original plan was to try and eat every single dish, but considering there were over 80 restaurants at the event, I had to make do with sampling as much as I could. I did pretty well.
Now with summer officially here, what could be a better revenge against the oppressive heat than noodles that are best served cold? Here are seven of our favorites in Chicago.
If I had unlimited amounts of wealth and time, or otherwise lived a life of leisure, I would surely wake up every morning and walk to Lula Cafe, where I would find a sunny spot at their long white marble bar, read the paper, and have breakfast. There would be pour over coffee, an omelet or frittata, and a small plate of their exceptionally good breakfast sausage. And I'd be a happy man.
Haven't made a reservation for Mother's Day brunch yet? Don't fear! We've tracked down some excellent options that either don't take them, or still have some openings (as of this exact moment). The picks are from all over town and specialize in different aspects of a good brunch, so you should be able to find the one that works best for your mom.
Lula Cafe's Ham and Raclette Panino ($10) is no exception to the cafe's standard of deliciousness. An upscale version on the traditional ham and cheese sandwich, the panino takes locally sourced ham and mild raclette cheese, and tops it with a fried farm egg.
Put an Egg on It was born out of a very simple question: do all foods taste better with an egg on them? As far as savory courses are concerned, the answer seems to be almost a definite yes. (Very unscientific calculations were in the 99 percent range.) It doesn't matter if the egg is fried, poached, or cooked in a thousand dollar sous vide machine, that plump yolk—which should slowly erupt like molten lava—improves just about everything it touches.
If you'd written off Lula due to its notoriety for lengthy lines, rejoice at the restaurant's new expansion, which added much-needed seating and a reservation system. Since you're likely to polish off a veggie-heavy sandwich or a seasonal soup, you'll have no trouble justifying an order of one of Kate Neumann's pastries for dessert.
Every few weeks, one of our writers is going to write about their neighborhood favorites. First up is Logan Square, which has seen an influx of new restaurants. It's so big that it was hard to leave some places out. But here is Nick's Logan Square.