We arrived in Chicago a little after noon on Saturday and hopped on the L towards Ukrainian Village where we would be hitting the hay each night. It took over an hour – word to the wise, bring food onto the plane or pick up a snack along the way! By the time we located our accommodations and dropped off our bags, our stomachs were grumbling in protest. We decided to stop in at Habana Libre for a late lunch.
Between the two of us, we shared the fish croquetas appetizer, two sandwiches – pan con bistek and jibarito, and a mango milkshake. It was my first time trying a jibarito, and I just looked up the story on Wikipedia:
The jibarito [pronounced hee-bah-ree-to], a specialty of Chicago, is a sandwich made with flattened, fried green plantains instead of bread, garlic-flavored mayonnaise, and a filling that typically includes meat, cheese, lettuce and tomato…
…Chicago restaurateur Juan “Peter” Figueroa introduced the jibarito at Borinquen Restaurant, a Puerto Rican restaurant in the Humboldt Park neighborhood, in 1996, after reading about a Puerto Rican sandwich substituting plantains for bread. The sandwich’s popularity soon spread to other Latin-American restaurants around Chicago, including Mexican, Cuban and Argentinian establishments, and jibaritos now can be found in some mainstream eateries as well.
Tasty and just the thing to munch on.
It started pouring outside during our meal, so we were glad that we were inside. We thought we’d caught a break from the rain, so paid our bill and made our way to the bus stop. Within minutes, we were rained upon.
To stay dry, we decided to do some beer tasting over at Goose Island. Even though it’s not written on the menu, you can sample four pours of anything they have on tap for $8. It’s quite the deal, and we decided to go with two flights.
Here’s what we tasted and the informal tasting notes I jotted down on the menu:
Uncle Dunkel [European-style Dunkelbier] – doesn’t stand out flavor-wise
Shakar [American Nitro Porter] – hickory smell, like bacon, my favorite dark
Liquid Inspiration Stout [American Stout] – hoppy, imperialish, Ryan’s favorite
Honestly Sour [Export Stout] – sour coffee, :-/
Fleur [Belgian Style Pale Ale] – crisp, hints of sweetness
Matilda [Belgian Style Pale Ale] – pumpkin pie
Pere Jacques [Belgian Style Abbey Ale] – better as it warms up, fruity [bananas or berries?]
The Dream [Italian Farro Ale] – honey lemon tea
We didn’t order any food to pair with our beer because we had deep dish waiting for us! After beer tasting, we went pizza tasting at Lou Malnati’s. It was a #BISC reunion of sorts – Leah +2 and Terra +1 were also in town, so we met up with Nic +1 and Caryn +1 for her favorite deep dish. It was this part of the evening where my camera mysteriously disappeared, so I leave you with two of Terra’s photos.
The key to trying deep dish? Bring an appetite and a large group, so you can order a few different kinds and have a slice of each! The food was good, the company better. While it was delicious, deep dish pizza still isn’t one of those things that I can eat every day. We wrapped up the evening with games at Caryn’s before heading back to our side of the city for the night.