Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
orenlund

Hyde Park, Chicago

Recommended Posts

Hello All,

Everyone was so helpful about my last question that I've got another one for y'all.

I will be moving to Hyde Park, Chicago in June. I won't have a car and I won't have any money. Where am I going to eat?

Thank you in advance,

Oren

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

University of Chicago? Grad Student? Its not that hard to get into chicago proper without a car, but it isn't as easy as just walking down the street. The bus is easy (but it might take you an hour to get to the north side), and the metra works, but isn't as easy (at least I don't think so).

I can't remember any of the names of the places we eat at, but I'm heading there tonight and will try to refresh my memory. There are a couple tasty bakeries. Some affordable thai joints. A BBQ place I've never tried. And theres a new hooka place that had excellent coffee (not sure if this was a fluke as I only went there once).

One good thing is that many people living there have cars, so you'll probably make a friend that will be happy to leave hyde park with you. I like the area, don't get me wrong, but its nothing like the north side food/nightlife-wise, and not having an easy El stop makes it slightly tough to get around.


Edited by MattJohnson (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not hard to get downtown if you have some time. I tend to use the #6 bus, but there are various other options, including the Metra (which only runs frequently during rushhour). Going north from downtime is more time-consuming, but is also definitely doable.

In Hyde Park proper, options are somewhat limited. The grocery store in the area, the Coop Market, tends to be universally hated by the students here. There's a small produce shop called Hyde Park Produce that is cheaper and better (for produce). HPP also carries Boar's Head products. There's another small place called the University Mart (or somesuch) which also sells Boar's Head stuff, but I've never been inside.

I tend to shop at HPP in Hyde Park and travel downtown for Trader Joe's and Fox and Obel (small upscale grocery store with very nice bakery).

There are two bakeries in Hyde Park: the Bonjour Bakery, which produces some decent pastries (and also sells sandwiches and the like). The Medici Bakery sells bread and pastries. Their bread is good, their pastries... not so much.

The Thai places aren't great. You can get much better food, for a similar price, downtown. My favorite restaurants in the area are the two Middle-Eastern places: Cedar's and The Nile. The BBQ place, Ribs-n-Bibs is supposed to be decent.

There's a couple Mexican places, a southern food restaurant (Dixie Kitchen), and one weird place that serves American southern food and Indian food (Ragun' Cajun). For any kind of real variety, you really do need to head out of Hyde Park, unfortunately.

Let me know if you have any questions

------

Alex Parker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,

The Dixie Kitchen and Calypso Cafe are both in Harper Court and have good food at fair prices.

I remember the Coop as a really good food store. There is also the Moo & Oink, if you are really into pork.

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We come from downtown to Dixie Bait Shop. Mmmm...bread pudding. (We always split one order, but the servers always bring a piece the size of your head, which both defeats the purpose and is very appreciated.) Someone recommended the Caribbean place next door, but we haven't tried that yet.

eta: I'm typing while Tim's posting. :laugh: Yes, thanks, Calypso Cafe.


Edited by hsm (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I was in high scool on the Northside, I would take the parent's car for unauthorized runs to Harold's Fried Chicken Shack...my order half chicken white with salt, pepper, mild, and hot.


Edited by molto e (log)

Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Harold's, Ribs and Bibs, whatever Cedar's of Lebanon is now renamed (it's in Harper Court now). If you're at U of C, the coffeeshop in the basement of the Divinity School is fabulous, and has carry out from a variety of local eats such as Snail (Thai) and Nile (middle eastern). There's an abundance of Thai places- a number of them along 53rd. Pizza Capri up on 53rd is also muy tasty. And god bless Jimmy's, the Woodlawn Tap. Sniff.

Also as a U of Cer, you can be a member of the Pub in the basement of Ida Noyes. $5 for an annual membership. 21 beers on tap, 2 ciders, 100+ kinds in the bottle, full menu. Wednesdays are dollar shake days in the student union, btw.

Edited to add- there was, when I lived there, a delightful bakery (Bon Jour) in the Hyde Park Co-op shopping center on 55th.


Edited by chicagowench (log)

What do you mean I shouldn't feed the baby sushi?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

WOW!!!

Perfect suggestions. I can't wait to get familiar with the new neighborhood.

Thanks,

Oren

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's not hard to get downtown if you have some time. I tend to use the #6 bus, but there are various other options, including the Metra (which only runs frequently during rushhour). Going north from downtime is more time-consuming, but is also definitely doable.

Here's some more detailed information about public transportation options and what they mean to food (although I agree with MattJohnson that you'll probably be dining with friends at least one of whom has a car, which will be a lot more convenient when you are going outside of Hyde Park).

Metra is Chicago's commuter rail system, and includes the Metra Electric Line (formerly known as the IC, or Illinois Central, many years ago) which runs between Hyde Park (stops at 47th/Kenwood, 51st/53rd, 55th/56th/57th, 59th, and 63rd Streets) and the Loop (stops at Millennium Park and at Van Buren Street). Trains take about fifteen minutes and run hourly all day long, with the last departure leaving the Loop at 12:50 a.m. Monday-Saturday. Metra may or may not be convenient for you, depending on where you're going from and to; it runs along the east side of Hyde Park and the east side of the Loop, and does not continue to the north side of Chicago. You will have to pay a separate fare if you take the CTA (bus and el/subway) to continue your trip. More information on Metra at metrarail.com, or click here to go directly to the schedules for the Metra Electric Line.

The CTA operates Chicago's bus and el (subway) lines. The advantage is that one fare, with a transfer, can take you anywhere in the city (and a few close-in suburbs). As Palladion notes, it is more time-consuming. You'll find more information on the CTA website at transitchicago.com.

Both websites (Metra and CTA) have a travel planner that does a fairly good (but not always infallible) job at providing suggestions for getting from one point to another. Either travel planner includes options from all transit services (both Metra and CTA, as well as Pace suburban bus service where applicable).

Food options within Hyde Park have been described above. Hyde Park is a relatively small, isolated neighborhood, and there isn't much around it worth traveling to. So you will become familiar with places within the neighborhood very quickly. When you leave Hyde Park for food, you'll usually be travelling at least 7-8 miles or more.

Metra service runs to the Loop, which is Chicago's commercial center, but is only part of the greater area that people refer to as "downtown Chicago" and contains many, many restaurant choices, including places in the South Loop, the West Loop and Greek Town, and River North, Streeterville, and Michigan Avenue. Most, but not all, of the places in these areas tend to be on the expensive side, with the Greek restaurants in Greek Town as a notable exception.

Beyond downtown, there are many, many restaurant choices all over the city, including many in the "cheap eats" category. Some ethnic choices are clustered in specific neighborhoods (Indian restaurants on Devon Avenue, Vietnamese on Argyle) while many others are just spread out all over.

If you enjoy food, I suggest that you try to travel all over the city and you will find plenty to choose from. Besides, it's nice to leave Hyde Park from time to time, to get a little more variety into your life and to appreciate how much all of Chicago has to offer.

One of the more useful websites in looking up hours and other information on restaurants is Metromix, the dining/entertainment website of the Chicago Tribune, which has restaurant listings searchable by neighborhood, cuisine, etc.


Edited by nsxtasy (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All the places I was thinking of have been listed above. Good thread though. I'd forgotten about Pizza Capri. Its not a bad place at all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ribs and Bibs makes some great food. Harold's is sort of a rite of passage for University of Chicago students, you need to eat it at least once while a student there.

Hope you have a great time in Hyde Park.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since you mentioned you'd be in HP for three years, I'm guessing you'll be a law school student. As an alumna of both the College and the Law School, I gotta say that I've noticed the two bodies of students ate very differently... My law school buddies were much pickier than my college friends about service and generally preferred the slightly higher quality restaurants. My own thoughts:

Love the Medici Bakery. I was just at the Law School this past weekend for the Eight Blocks conference and had to stop back in the bakery for a ham and swiss croissant -- $3.50 covered me for lunch. :biggrin: I wish the Med would open another bakery in my neck of the woods.

The Medici restaurant itself is fine (tasty burgers) but most of my law school friends hated the service. Personally, I rarely notice slow service when I'm amongst a group of friends (usually chatting too much!) and I knew quite a few servers anyway as fellow college alums so I rarely had bad service.

Cafe Florian has the best milkshakes in Hyde Park.

Calypso Cafe and Dixie Kitchen were popular among the law school students, but my favorite restaurant in Harper Court was Maravilla's -- huge burritos for around $5. I'll admit it's been a while, but I remember them being quite tasty...

Noodles on 57th is relatively close to the law school and was a popular choice among my friends when we had a couple of hours between classes. Decent Thai.

As much as I like Harold's and R'nB while I was in college, I don't recall eating there while in law school. Odd.

Ah, Jimmy's. Just a wonderful place to go for drinks after exams... Cheeseburgers aren't bad IMO but most of my law school friends were a bit too fastidious to actually eat there. :blink:

Grocery shopping in Hyde Park just sucks. I did hear that Hyde Park Produce is about to expand, which would be a very good thing. Peapod (grocery delivery service) may actually be worth the expense (about $5 to get $100 worth of groceries delivered) to you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ah, Jimmy's. Just a wonderful place to go for drinks after exams... Cheeseburgers aren't bad IMO but most of my law school friends were a bit too fastidious to actually eat there

And yet the biology grad students ate there religiously! :laugh:


What do you mean I shouldn't feed the baby sushi?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

vykim, you are right to assume I'll be a law student. This is after a career in kitchens, though, so my culinary preferences/tolerances will probably be a bit different than my classmates.

I'm guessing I'll be spending a lot of time in Hyde Park for the first year. So the neighborhood suggestions are wonderful. Thank you! After that first year, I expect I'll be able to explore the rest of the city's food offerings a little more.

Thank you everyone for the help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to visit the rajun cajun place near 53rd and harper a lot and also cedars of lebanon.

dixie kitchen experience has always been hit or miss - with service being the question mark a couple of times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...