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— Travel + Leisure · Guide to Chicago · created over 2 years ago
It's home to plenty of nitrogen-canister-wielding megachefs, but Chicago also lays claim to one of the country's greatest back-to-basics food communities. These neighborhood favorites are bringing the Old South (and a bit of the Old World) to the heartland. By Francine Maroukian. Adapted from "Chicago's Deep Dish," Travel + Leisure, May 2011. http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/chicago-restaurants-southern-influenceRead more...
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Big Star's tortillas always exhibit the hallmark of freshness: supple enough to roll without cracking yet durable enough to withstand the fillings—such as the tinga de pollo, wood-grilled chicken thigh with house-made chorizo and chipotle salsa.
The custard-soaked brioche from the third-generation family-owned Gonnella Bakery is vacuum sealed and cooked sous vide before it even hits the griddle to be seared; it's then garnished with macerated pineapple and cranberry, citrus cream, and pink peppercorns.
Chef Gary Taylor makes good on his promise of "the dirtiest fried-chicken north of the Mason-Dixon." His buttermilk-brined Amish bird, fired up by just enough hot sauce and Old Bay seasoning (with a subtle undertow of cardamom and clove), results in a crisply crusted chicken that is both airy and earthy.