You can still "avoid substitutes," as the line of small print advises: Although the bakery's founder sold his business in 1921, Butternut Bread is available to this day. Under the ownership of Interstate Bakeries, the Schulze name remained in use at least until 1957; the most charming Butternut promotions appeared a decade later, courtesy of a different Schulz.
Schulze's Butter Nut Bread Surviving signage, 2024 West 18th St. (South Hoyne-South Damen Aves.), Chicago (From a June 2016 visit)
Like most deep-dish pizzas, the Malnati Chicago Classic is built backward compared with, say, a New York pie. After the dough is patted into the bottom of the pan and up the sides (eventually it will form what the restaurant brands its Buttercrust), the mozzarella is laid atop it, followed by any additional ingredients (for the Classic, this entails extra cheese plus lean sausage). Last in the pan is a superb, especially chunky tomato sauce. Not shown: knife and fork.
On my final evening in town, I upsold myself from a personal-size to a small ($14.95), ostensibly meant for two. So how well, you may ask, does deep-dish pizza hold up the next morning? Sorry, you should have asked me during dinner, before I ate the evidence!
Lou Malnati's Pizzeria 439 North Wells St. (West Illinois-West Hubbard Sts.), Chicago 312-828-9800 (One of many locations) www.LouMalnatis.com (From a June 2016 visit)
Chicago dog ($2.99) with all the trimmings, all in their true-to-life colors — even that sweet pickle relish, in emerald green.
Also shown: the stand-alone restaurant, built expressly for Portillo's in the spring of 2016, and one of many retro signs that adorn the facade. To strengthen the impression that "we're old-timers in the neighborhood," nowadays many businesses employ deliberately distressed signage. The Coca-Cola sign goes further: Its placement suggests a faded ad that's hanging tough, even in the light of later construction.
Portillo's 520 West Taylor St. (at South Clinton St.), Chicago 312-667-4560 (One of many locations) www.Portillos.com (From a June 2016 visit)
Sugar pie, sugar cream pie, Indiana cream pie — "Hoosier pie" (slice, $5.50) sums it up perfectly.
Also shown: a table with a view (and the best light for a photo). Hoosier Mama's predecessor was a Mexican grocery and takeout, I was told, but once upon a time that elevated platform might have held a shop-window display.
Hoosier Mama Pie Company 1618 West Chicago Ave. (Ashland-North Marshfield Aves.), Chicago 312-243-4846 (One of two Chicagoland locations) www.HoosierMamaPie.com Closed Monday (From a June 2016 visit)
Carne en su jugo (Hoo-go, $11.25), literally "beef in its own juices," is a consommé freighted with chopped steak (by definition), beans and bacon (typically), and onion, radish, and avocado (accompaniments usually added just before serving). An LTH Forum post, though a decade old, offers an exhaustive survey of variations in Chicago and also illuminates the cooking practices in the Mexican state of Jalisco, the soup's ancestral home. There's much to chew on.
In the vestibule of the restaurant, a handwritten sign advised, "También tenemos lonches de pierna de puerco con el auténtico birote salado estílo Guadalajara" — "We also have shredded-pork-leg sandwiches on the authentic, salty, Guadalajara-style loaves." This location of Los Gallos, one of several, is blessed by a companion bakery next door. At the time of my visit, I confess, the various breads attracted little of my attention; instead, shown below are empanadas with a dozen or so different sweet fillings. I walked off with a camote and a calabaza (sweet potato and pumpkin, 68 cents each).
Taqueria Los Gallos 4211 West 26th St. (South Tripp-South Keeler Aves.), Chicago 773-762-7452 (One of several locations) www.TaqueriasLosGallos.com (From a June 2016 visit)
Five-napkin sandwich: Italian beef ($6.49), "wet, with hot and sweet" (peppers, 60 cents each).
Al's Beef (aka Al's Italian Beef, Al's #1 Italian Beef) 1079 West Taylor St. (South Aberdeen-South Carpenter Sts.), Chicago 312-226-4017 (One of many locations) www.AlsBeef.com (From a June 2016 visit)
The straw, you'd expect, but the spoon came in handy. In Chicago, "lemonade" is a venerable name for a slushy and sometimes chunky refreshment. My melon lemonade (medium, $3) sported telltale bits of lemon rind and chunks of canteloupe, too.