Chicago has a bunch of nice restaurants, and all sorts of different foods. But where Chicago cuisine really shines is with junk food--Hot Dogs, Italian Beef, deep dish pizza, fried chicken, ribs, etc etc. Dishing out this greasy cornucopia are legendary joints, stands, and restaurants, like Al's Italian Beef, The Wiener's Circle, Portillo's, Giordano's, and Harold's Chicken Shack. A tier below these local staples are the national chains, which may or may not be familiar to you depending on your locale. If there is an expert navigating the world of fast food chains, it is Joe.
Joe paid a visit to TAKOTRON HQ this past weekend, and we checked out the scene. Our neighborhood here has some unique offerings not normally available to Northsiders.
First, is Checkers, which has an amazing Flash Site, and even more amazing fries. Their other food is pretty standard. I guess they are a southern chain, and according to Joe, who has watched this beloved empire crumble before him, the one on 55th by the Dan Ryan Expressway is the last remaining in the area. This also provides another incentive to come all the way down here. Drive-Thru open till 12.
Next to Checkers, though difficult to see, is a Popeye's at 5401 S wentworth. The reason it is difficult to see stems from it's dimensions. It's about 15 x 25 ft, drive through only. They have wonderful Apple Pies. Similar to McDonald's in format, but 10x superior in quality. And they approach their pseudo-Cajun image conscientiously: POPEYES? CHICKEN & BISCUITS LAUNCHES NATIONAL IN-RESTAURANT DONATION PROGRAM TO SUPPORT HURRICANE KATRINA RELIEF .
The parking lot complex featured a man walking around selling "long socks," aka big white tube socks, at 11 pm. A hard sell.