Recent Foodie Finds | chicago foodie girl


Recent Foodie Finds

Happy spring! I know that technically it has been spring for just over a month, but up until this weekend, it was still very much winter here (there's nothing quite like a series of late April surprise snowstorms to dash your hopes and send you into an angsty tailspin). However, it seems like we've finally pulled through (yay!). Between several bouts with icky winter sickness, some unexpected work stress, a persistent feeling of dissatisfaction with everything going on in the country, and some scary health situations involving close friends, it was already starting to feel like 2018 was setting up to be one of those years. However, after a few days of nicer weather and quality time with friends, I'm feeling slightly more optimistic (I maintain the right to revert back to my previous grumpiness if we get hit by any additional late-season snowstorms!).

I kicked off the weekend with a visit to LiqrBox (boozy juice boxes FTW!) and then spent some time soaking up the sun on the rooftop of The Godfrey with friends. On Saturday, Diana and I paid a visit to Easy Street Pizza, where we sampled some drool-worthy mac & cheese pizza. I spent the rest of the weekend putting in some quality time with the DVR (Mario was in Vegas for a birthday celebration, so I used my time alone to binge-watch the shows he hates), planning an upcoming trip to NOLA (it's my first time and I am ridiculously excited!), and writing a few sorely overdue blog posts (there's more coming very soon!).

Here are a few of my recent foodie finds (follow me on Instagram for even more)...

Hawaiian Classic Poké Bowl with ahi tuna, ogo seaweed, cucumber, mango, and classic sauce at Pokéworks. I don't know about you, but I am absolutely loving this poké explosion! After years of being poké-less, there are so many poké joints in Chicago; one of my favorites is the super popular fast-casual Pokéworks, where you can choose from a menu of their creations or build-your-own bowl. Their ingredients are always fresh and they have a wide assortment from which to choose.

While I do typically stick with the bowls at Pokéworks, I finally gave their Spicy Ahi Tuna Poké Burrito a try at their new location in Fulton Market. I'm usually not a huge fan of sushi burritos, as they're either soggy or the ratio of rice to fish is off, but Pokéworks' version was fantastic! It wasn't overwhelmingly filled with rice and the fish was stuffed all the way through.

Brisket Nachos piled high with baked beans, cheese, corn, jalapenos, and sour cream at Wrigley BBQ. When a brisket meets some nachos... yes, this is the moment in which some straight up cheesy, meaty, delicious food porn happens! 😏🍖🧀😋

The super-stacked Shrimp and Chorizo Burger topped with grilled onions, avocado, and red bell pepper aioli at Steak + Vine is so meaty and flavorful! Mario and I stopped by to check out their brunch menu and were both loved their perfectly done versions of classic dishes - the burger and the shrimp and grits are most definitely the standouts.  

Rosé-Infused Donut from Glazed and Infused. In case you haven't already heard, the popular donut shop closed its doors early this year. I was so bummed to say goodbye - not only did they have some of my favorite donuts (I looked forward to the boozy eggnog donut every year!) but also it was the very first specialty donut shop I visited in Chicago. Boo!

Waffle and Chicken at G&O: fried chicken thighs with andouille sausage gravy on a Belgian waffle. At one point in my life, I totally didn't get the concept of chicken and waffles, but over the last few years, it has become one of my favorite brunch dishes! The G&O version is particularly fantastic, thanks to the light and crispy waffle (it has almost a funnel cake flavor and texture). There are also candied bacon bits in the gravy, which is just all sorts of delicious.

  • Ancho Tostada with piquillo peppers, Manchego cheese, and anchovy drizzled with Spanish olive oil at The Spanish Square. I've had a bit of a tumultuous relationship with anchovies ever since I was a kid and bit into a piece of cold pizza loaded with super salty anchovies at a friend's birthday party (ugh, I still remember how terrible it tasted!). However, as an adult, I've learned to appreciate the umami element of fresh anchovies (especially when paired with a mild cheese). This dish is a definite must-order! 

Since 2002, Cemitas Puebla has been serving up its beloved regional Mexican sandwiches (cemitas) made with a sesame seed bread, a pounded-thin and breaded cut of steak or pork loin, avocado, chipotle pepper sauce, and a pile of Oaxacan cheese. My newest favorite is the Atomica with breaded pork loin, grilled pork loin, and ham. It's over-the-top meaty but ridiculously flavorful, and something you need to try at least once!

Only a few days into 2018, I officially added the fantastic Adobo Fried Rice with crispy pork belly from Barrio to my list of brunch favorites. It's sweet, tangy, meaty, and seriously tasty! 

When you go to the Seafood City food court for the first time and have no idea what to order... so you order one of everything! 😋🐟🍜🍤🥘😋 The crispy deep-fried pork belly, the BBQ pork sticks, and the grilled squid were all standouts.

The super fun sushi donuts have *finally* made their way to Chicago, thanks to Simply ThaliaThe Chicago Loop with salmon and super white tuna, The Blue Line with spicy tuna, ocean blue mayo and unagi sauce, and The Red Line with spicy salmon and red tobiko. Now when are we going to get sushi pizza?!

Triple-decker ice cream sandwich tower of happiness at Gordo's Homemade Ice CreamCinnamon Toast Crunch with dark chocolate, Oreo and sprinkles with milk chocolate, and my favorite, Fruity Pebbles with white chocolate. If you haven't been to this cute shop, it's definitely worth adding to your summer ice cream list! They usually have close to twenty varieties of ice cream bars (you pick the dip and toppings), along with pre-dipped bars and ice cream sandwiches.

The Bee's Knees cocktail (Aviation Gin, Cointreau, honey, fresh lemon & angostura bitters) at Canadian import Earls is not only ridiculously cute, but it's also super refreshing. A+ for both presentation and flavor!

ETA: Glazed & Infused, Pokéworks, Cemitas Puebla, and The Spanish Square have closed.

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