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Hi from Chicago!


tppytel
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Hey everybody!

 

I've seen some interesting threads from here turn up in Google over the years and I figure I should join in. Like a lot of folks, I'm doing a whole lot of cooking these days - particularly baking, which I never really had the time to dive into before. Hoping to get some chocolate advice from the baking peeps here.

 

When I'm not shut in at home and baking every day, I cook a lot of Asian food - Japanese, Cantonese, bit of Sichuan, bit of Korean, or whatever else catches my interest. Living in Chicago I have some good restaurants for all of those nearby too, though I tend only to visit restaurants to better understand what I'm trying to do at home.

 

Cheers!

Todd

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Welcome to eGullet, @tppytel!   I'm not a chocolatier but I often read those threads because I find the whole business fascinating.   There are lots of very experienced folks here who are incredibly generous in sharing their knowledge so I'd encourage you to dive in, discover the wealth of information in some of the existing threads, share what you're doing and ask questions!

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Thanks for the kindly welcome!

 

Chicago certainly is a fine place to eat. For starters, it's tough for me to travel given the sorry state of pizza everywhere else but here. I always read these "How do I make good pizza?" threads online and give thanks that I can just order in something respectable from a joint that's 10 minutes away. Why screw around with dough and stones and sauces when I can just order in cheaper and better? Poor non-Chicago people... 

 

I know Chicago has some well-regarded spots in the big global food scene too, but that's not really my bag, though a couple of my friends are into it. I like the neighborhood and ethnic joints that don't hit me for three figure dinners. I'm in Albany Park - one of Chicago's most diverse neighborhoods - and I can easily walk to restaurants serving more than a dozen different cuisines. The Salvadoran place a few blocks from me makes killer pupusas. The old school Japanese restaurant a mile north has sushi and donburi for a terrific price. I've got Korean and Lebanese and Persian and Brazilian and Mexican and German and Thai and more in walking distance. The Hong Kong BBQ joint 15 minutes away has some of the best Peking Duck in the States, plus charsiu I can take out to use for stir fry later. That's where I'm at. I worry that my kids don't get how fortunate they are when it comes to food.

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Ms. Alex and I explore Chicago regularly, but Albany Park is one of the neighborhoods that have so far escaped us. I first got clued into it via a 2013 article in the Reader

"There is no sincerer love than the love of food."  -George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, Act 1

 

Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

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Well, I hope you'll visit AP next time then, Alex! We have a couple of long-time institutions like Noon o Kabob for Persian and Tre Kronor for Swedish breakfast - those are musts on any Chicago food tour. I used to include Great Seas (around the corner from me on Lawrence) on that list too for Korean-Chinese, but it's unfortunately bounced around between owners with legal issues over the years and isn't as good anymore. But then there are a bunch of little unpretentious joints that have popped up along Kedzie and Kimball between Montrose and Lawrence over the last few years, and the stretch of Lawrence from Kedzie east across the river has some cool stuff too. Many of those places come and go, so just browse Google and Yelp and see what looks interesting. It's not really a neighborhood for night-life per se, but you can take a short hop on the L over to Lincoln Square if you want bars and music and craft whiskey and all that after dinner.

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