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Lunch Under $5 [List]

Lunch Under $5 [List]
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  • Post #91 - September 24th, 2006, 10:49 am
    Post #91 - September 24th, 2006, 10:49 am Post #91 - September 24th, 2006, 10:49 am
    Sarkis
    2632 Gross Point Rd
    Evanston, IL 60201
    (847) 328-9703

    For $5: a ham loretta, hash browns, and a can of pop. I know that the disaster is a favorite among many. I don't make it over here very often so ever since I've had the ham loretta, I've been hard pressed to try anything else. I love the lightly grilled french rolls filled w/perfectly melted Wisconsin brick cheese, ham, and chopped onions & peppers.

    Sarkis is discussed in greater detail in this thread.
  • Post #92 - September 29th, 2006, 2:14 am
    Post #92 - September 29th, 2006, 2:14 am Post #92 - September 29th, 2006, 2:14 am
    fastfoodsnob wrote:Gigio's Pizzeria in Evanston
    1001 Davis
    Evanston, IL 60201
    (847) 328-0990
    http://gigiospizzeriaevanston.com/

    Stopped by Gigio's for a taste of their New York-style, thin-crust pizza-by-the-slice earlier this week, and I went home satisfied. Slices range in price from $2.16 for the cheese; $2.30 for the sausage, mushroom, and pepperoni; and $2.53 for the vegetarian special. Small fries are $1.15, onion rings are $2.16, and soft drinks were reasonably priced (though I can't currently recall how much they were). A filling meal could be constructed from the large slices and/or freshly fried sides.

    As for the food itself, I don't have much firsthand reference for authentic (and top-quality) New York-style pizza myself, so I'll just have to go by my local thin-crust experience to evaluate the finished product. Relatively fresh pizzas lay on the inside of the order counter, which stretched back into the rest of the well-populated building. (The lunch crowd really fills this place up!) It didn't look like customers received their slices re-warmed upon ordering, so I was lucky to arrive right when the last cooling slice of sausage was just taken -- thus guaranteeing at least a fairly warm slice when my newly originating (or was it reheated?) pizza popped out of the oven.

    The crust was thin, but not cracker-thin, nor nearly as hard as such a crust. I wouldn't say the edges of my slice were easily folded, but my standard for measuring these things is of course not fully calibrated. At first, the combination of sausage and cheese didn't seem to appeal to me, the sausage almost seeming undercooked in comparison to other Chicago joints. Fearing a disappointing visit, I soldiered on consuming the slice along with the crushed red-pepper flakes evenly spread over my toppings. Eventually I developed an appreciation for the fresh preparation of the meat and even began to enjoy my sausage after a few minutes in. More substantial than the pie from Apart, I would say that this meal might be a better value, too (if you can get over the different style of sausage).

    The onion rings were very hot to the touch, forcing me to use napkins to dip them in their complementary ring sauce. A very tasty combo. Fries were equally hot temperature-wise, but they tasted better with ketchup than with the sauce. Portions of sides were surprisingly large, even for the small serving size, so it helped that I had company to help finish everything we ordered. If there's better pizza by the slice in Evanston, I'd like to know where it is, 'cuz Gigio's is the best for me right now. (Disclaimer: I prefer thin crust to deep dish and the like.)

    Mmm... tasty,
    Dan

    By the way, credit cards require a minimum $10 purchase... just so you know.
  • Post #93 - September 29th, 2006, 8:31 am
    Post #93 - September 29th, 2006, 8:31 am Post #93 - September 29th, 2006, 8:31 am
    fastfoodsnob wrote:The onion rings were very hot to the touch, forcing me to use napkins to dip them in their complementary ring sauce. A very tasty combo. Fries were equally hot temperature-wise, but they tasted better with ketchup than with the sauce.

    What kind of batter was on the onion rings: beer or breading?

    Thanks
  • Post #94 - September 29th, 2006, 8:57 am
    Post #94 - September 29th, 2006, 8:57 am Post #94 - September 29th, 2006, 8:57 am
    All good things must come to an end. The Mama Falcos located in the Marquette building with the pasta dinner for under $4.50 is closing today. Bummer.
    Honey, people will eat anything. Hildegard the maid.
  • Post #95 - September 29th, 2006, 9:45 am
    Post #95 - September 29th, 2006, 9:45 am Post #95 - September 29th, 2006, 9:45 am
    Pucca wrote:
    fastfoodsnob wrote:The onion rings were very hot to the touch, forcing me to use napkins to dip them in their complementary ring sauce. A very tasty combo. Fries were equally hot temperature-wise, but they tasted better with ketchup than with the sauce.

    What kind of batter was on the onion rings: beer or breading?

    Thanks

    I'd assume the batter on the onion rings was the typical breading you find on these things, as the crunchy covering was more reminiscent of the rings at Burger King than the thinly coated ones that claim to be beer-battered online. Unfortunately, I'm not sure whether I've actually had beer-battered onion rings or not -- thin, thick, I never really thought about the batter ingredients up till now -- which means my say in this matter carries little weight. Any beer-battered places you can recommend, so I can be sure to try the real thing? (Probably a pub, I'd imagine?)

    --Dan
  • Post #96 - September 29th, 2006, 9:55 am
    Post #96 - September 29th, 2006, 9:55 am Post #96 - September 29th, 2006, 9:55 am
    fastfoodsnob wrote: Any beer-battered places you can recommend, so I can be sure to try the real thing? (Probably a pub, I'd imagine?)
    --Dan

    Darn, I was hoping you'd be able to help me out! I LOVE beer-battered onion rings! They're so good and light but crispy! When I was a kid, there was an old fashioned diner in the space that is now PF Changs at Woodfield Mall. They used to serve these towers of beer battered onions rings on a poll - similar to a toy w/the colored plastic rings. I can't recall coming across beer battered onion rings often at all. Then again, I've never really set out a quest in search of them. My brother in law actually made some w/a red onion using Jamie Oliver's recipe for fish & chips batter. They were really good, and the sweetness from the red onions were phenomenal.
  • Post #97 - September 29th, 2006, 10:01 am
    Post #97 - September 29th, 2006, 10:01 am Post #97 - September 29th, 2006, 10:01 am
    Pucca wrote:Darn, I was hoping you'd be able to help me out! I LOVE beer-battered onion rings! They're so good and light but crispy! When I was a kid, there was an old fashioned diner in the space that is now PF Changs at Woodfield Mall. They used to serve these towers of beer battered onions rings on a poll - similar to a toy w/the colored plastic rings. I can't recall coming across beer battered onion rings often at all. Then again, I've never really set out a quest in search of them. My brother in law actually made some w/a red onion using Jamie Oliver's recipe for fish & chips batter. They were really good, and the sweetness from the red onions were phenomenal.

    Wow, I feel underqualified to help in this regard. Perhaps a post requesting the best (in the Eating Out in Chicagoland board?) might be the best way to proceed here? I certainly wouldn't mind engaging in a little quest to try qualified candidates, however. :P

    --Dan
  • Post #98 - September 29th, 2006, 6:40 pm
    Post #98 - September 29th, 2006, 6:40 pm Post #98 - September 29th, 2006, 6:40 pm
    fastfoodsnob wrote:counter area was still a bit too hot temperature-wise for some people. All in all, another successful LTH recommendation! (Poochie's cheddar char cheeseburger really hit the spot last week; another great look at that place comes from Roadfood.com.) Maybe I'll have to hit Herm's on Dempster next... after picking up dogs from Poochie's, that is. Cheap, good food = a happy Snob. Thanks for the recs!

    --Dan


    BTW, Dan, since youre on a <5 meal-tear (and since you seem to be in
    the Evanston area)... the best of them (n terms of quality plus quantity
    of food) might well be Evanston Chicken Shack. They have a 2 leg
    and 2 thigh (plus fries) deal that comes in at 5 bucks on the nose
    (including tax) IIRC. The last time I was there, I tried the LTH-rec'd
    "hot and bbq sauces, mixed, and on" method, and it was really very
    good.

    Or else, if you dont like that particular brand of fried chicken, a slightly
    different (and also very good) version is round the corner at Hecky's -
    where you get less food (only a quarter chicken), but it comes in at
    about 4-something.

    Thanks for a few reminders in this thread, BTW - must start doing the
    rounds of those again :-)

    c8w
  • Post #99 - September 29th, 2006, 6:53 pm
    Post #99 - September 29th, 2006, 6:53 pm Post #99 - September 29th, 2006, 6:53 pm
    c8w wrote:BTW, Dan, since youre on a <5 meal-tear (and since you seem to be in
    the Evanston area)... the best of them (n terms of quality plus quantity
    of food) might well be Evanston Chicken Shack. They have a 2 leg
    and 2 thigh (plus fries) deal that comes in at 5 bucks on the nose
    (including tax) IIRC. The last time I was there, I tried the LTH-rec'd
    "hot and bbq sauces, mixed, and on" method, and it was really very
    good.

    Thanks for the recommendation, c8w. Thankfully, Gary and Cathy managed to get me out there to finally eat on the premises a couple years ago -- introducing me to my beloved Usmania at the same time -- and I love them all the more for it. :) I recommend the ECS to pretty much anybody looking for good Evanston eats, especially of the fried-fowl variety. Just a great alternative to Harold's for us North Siders.

    As for Hecky's, I believed I've had quite a bit of their fare catered a few years ago, but it would be nice to try their food on-site sometime. Those limited-time boneless buffalo nuggets from Popeyes have me intrigued, however....

    c8w wrote:Thanks for a few reminders in this thread, BTW - must start doing the
    rounds of those again :-)

    Oh, you're very welcome. I need those revisits to keep my memory fresh as well. I think my stomach is mighty grateful for that. :P

    Have a great weekend!

    --Dan
  • Post #100 - October 5th, 2006, 8:31 pm
    Post #100 - October 5th, 2006, 8:31 pm Post #100 - October 5th, 2006, 8:31 pm
    After entertaining a few meals above five dollars lately, I've drawn from the well once more for some cheap daytime eats. This was supposed to encompass a visit to Mr. Beef earlier this evening, but I'd unfortunately forgotten their rather limited workday hours during the week. So, while navigating the ever increasing downtown traffic before six o'clock, I started steering my way to Boston's through Chicago's crazy evening rush hour.

    Of course, that's Boston's as in Joe Boston's (and not the East Coast city), where I hoped for a taste of the four-star beef memorialized at GreaseFreak.com in pictorial form. $4.50 got me Joe's "Famous" Beef and 25 cents added my regular hot peppers (tax is included in the listed prices). As is my custom, I ordered my sandwich dipped, which resulted in one of the wettest beefs I've ever had. Sitting down for dinner in the restaurant -- there's limited parking in back -- a small stream of juice started to form on my impromptu plate (that is, my brown paper bag), nearly running onto the table and onto my pants. Have your napkins at the ready. Of course, this excess could be a good thing (see Skillet Doux's report on Boston's for more), or it could just be the result of the teenage help I dealt with before the six o'clock dinner rush began (and another guy basically took over). [Edit: now that I think of it, I was wearing a Cubs floppy hat in a Sox institution. Wonder if that had any effect at all...] Either way, I had a decent meal that served as a nice consolation prize for driving by Mr. Beef after five. On to more beef later!

    The deets:

    Mr. Beef
    8 a.m.-5 p.m. Mon.-Fri.; 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat.; closed Sun.
    666 N. Orleans St.
    Chicago, IL 60610
    (312) 337-8500

    Boston's Italian Beef
    On the corner of Chicago & Grand, east of Sacramento Blvd./Humboldt Dr.; also closed Sun.
    2932 W. Chicago Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60622
    (773) 486-9536

    Now that I think about it, I shoulda picked up an Italian ice somewhere along the way. :cry:

    Sufficiently satiated (I had a plate of orange chicken at three),
    Dan
  • Post #101 - October 8th, 2006, 4:11 pm
    Post #101 - October 8th, 2006, 4:11 pm Post #101 - October 8th, 2006, 4:11 pm
    gleam wrote:I'd completely forgotten about the reggio's at UIC, and I'll probably subject my wife to it at some point in the near future.


    Short summary: The butter crust is definitely present. It's perhaps a little thinner than the frozen variety, and quite thinner at the edge. The cheese isn't the best, the sauce is applied a bit too heavily, et cetera. It was a little underdone for my taste upon carryout. Not underbaked, but the crust was floppier and the cheese less browned than I'd like.

    It, like many pizzas, tasted better reheated the next day.

    It's fine pizza, and certainly a unique crust, but nothing earth shattering.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #102 - October 8th, 2006, 7:44 pm
    Post #102 - October 8th, 2006, 7:44 pm Post #102 - October 8th, 2006, 7:44 pm
    gleam wrote:Short summary: The butter crust is definitely present. It's perhaps a little thinner than the frozen variety, and quite thinner at the edge. The cheese isn't the best, the sauce is applied a bit too heavily, et cetera. It was a little underdone for my taste upon carryout. Not underbaked, but the crust was floppier and the cheese less browned than I'd like.

    It, like many pizzas, tasted better reheated the next day.

    It's fine pizza, and certainly a unique crust, but nothing earth shattering.

    I wonder whether there's a better fresh representative storefront for Reggio's pizza. Of course, like the frozen variety, these failings at the UIC branch aren't something that a little pizza-stone action can't fix, but it's certainly possible their best product is now found on freezer shelves at local retailers. Last resort: their remaining non-airport location at 87th and Dan Ryan. Man, that's a long way from the North Side.

    Thanks for the report,
    Dan
  • Post #103 - October 8th, 2006, 9:10 pm
    Post #103 - October 8th, 2006, 9:10 pm Post #103 - October 8th, 2006, 9:10 pm
    I liked it considerably more than the frozen variety. I would just be sure to request "well done" next time I ordered.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #104 - October 8th, 2006, 10:17 pm
    Post #104 - October 8th, 2006, 10:17 pm Post #104 - October 8th, 2006, 10:17 pm
    gleam wrote:I liked it considerably more than the frozen variety. I would just be sure to request "well done" next time I ordered.

    Ah, I see.... Thanks for the clarification, Ed. Something to look forward to next time I drive by UIC. :)

    Pizza, pizza,
    Dan
  • Post #105 - November 2nd, 2006, 1:39 pm
    Post #105 - November 2nd, 2006, 1:39 pm Post #105 - November 2nd, 2006, 1:39 pm
    fastfoodsnob wrote:Thanks for the recommendation, c8w. Thankfully, Gary and Cathy managed to get me out there to finally eat on the premises a couple years ago -- introducing me to my beloved Usmania at the same time -- and I love them all the more for it. :)
    --Dan


    BTW, for those interested...

    the free newspaper, the Indian Reporter (available at most Indian
    grocery stores, or right near the entrance of most Indian restaurants -
    even places like Sukhadia etc) currently has a coupon for a 2-for-1
    entree at JK Kabab House, valid Mondays thru Fridays. If this is
    used, it brings JK Kabab House comfortably into the "Under $5 category"
    for both lunch *and* dinner! (THey already have a couple of 5 bucks
    lunch specials IIRC - as well as a "Chilli Chicken over Rice" type items
    for 5 bucks).

    With this coupon, you can get a Chilli Chicken entree (the second best
    Chilli Chicken in the city IMHO, after Chopal), and, say, a Kadai Lamb
    entree for a total of about 9 bucks - thus if there are 2 people
    present, it is a brand new (temporary) entrant in the 5-and-under
    sweepstakes :-)

    c8w
  • Post #106 - November 2nd, 2006, 2:49 pm
    Post #106 - November 2nd, 2006, 2:49 pm Post #106 - November 2nd, 2006, 2:49 pm
    fastfoodsnob wrote:Of course, that's Boston's as in Joe Boston's (and not the East Coast city), where I hoped for a taste of the four-star beef memorialized at GreaseFreak.com in pictorial form. $4.50 got me Joe's "Famous" Beef and 25 cents added my regular hot peppers (tax is included in the listed prices).


    Some old news about Boston's

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/112821

    They sadly got rid of the classic sign, but it remains a very cool place. Note also the interesting account from the first (?) Beefathon, which I can't find. Were they still grilling Italian sausage over charcoal?
  • Post #107 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:09 pm
    Post #107 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:09 pm Post #107 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:09 pm
    c8w wrote:the free newspaper, the Indian Reporter (available at most Indian
    grocery stores, or right near the entrance of most Indian restaurants -
    even places like Sukhadia etc) currently has a coupon for a 2-for-1
    entree at JK Kabab House, valid Mondays thru Fridays. If this is
    used, it brings JK Kabab House comfortably into the "Under $5 category"
    for both lunch *and* dinner! (THey already have a couple of 5 bucks
    lunch specials IIRC - as well as a "Chilli Chicken over Rice" type items
    for 5 bucks).

    With this coupon, you can get a Chilli Chicken entree (the second best
    Chilli Chicken in the city IMHO, after Chopal), and, say, a Kadai Lamb
    entree for a total of about 9 bucks - thus if there are 2 people
    present, it is a brand new (temporary) entrant in the 5-and-under
    sweepstakes :-)

    Seeing "Chilli Chicken" and "5 bucks" in the same sentence nearly led me to believe that Chopal was having a coupon sale or something. If JK Kabab is nearly as good, however, this could definitely be worth checking out. Thanks for the rec (and heads-up on the coupon)... I'm certainly most interested! :)

    --Dan
  • Post #108 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:14 pm
    Post #108 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:14 pm Post #108 - November 2nd, 2006, 10:14 pm
    JeffB wrote:They sadly got rid of the classic sign, but it remains a very cool place. Note also the interesting account from the first (?) Beefathon, which I can't find. Were they still grilling Italian sausage over charcoal?

    Unfortunately, I don't recall what the sausage set-up at Boston's consisted of all that well. I probably inspected Jim's Original's grill with far more scrutiny from the outside counter. I guess I might have checked out Boston's grilling gear more carefully if I ordered combo sandwiches with greater frequency. Maybe next time!

    Gotta get me a decent camera,
    Dan
  • Post #109 - November 3rd, 2006, 8:16 am
    Post #109 - November 3rd, 2006, 8:16 am Post #109 - November 3rd, 2006, 8:16 am
    JeffB wrote:They sadly got rid of the classic sign, but it remains a very cool place. Note also the interesting account from the first (?) Beefathon, which I can't find. Were they still grilling Italian sausage over charcoal?


    Yes, they still grill the sausages over charcoal. Boston's Beef is definately worth checking out, though I may be biased as I live 3 blocks east of it. One thing to be careful of is their giardinera. They use red pepper flakes in it, and at times I have ended up with a "hot" beef that makes my eyes smoke. Must be that when the vat is near empty, you get scoops including all the flakes that have settled to the bottom.

    FastFoodSnob- While you were in the area you should have stopped by Tommy's Rock and Roll Cafe on Chicago Ave, near Rockwell. Pretty sure you can walk out of there with a sloppy joe for well under $5.
    Jamie
  • Post #110 - November 3rd, 2006, 11:21 am
    Post #110 - November 3rd, 2006, 11:21 am Post #110 - November 3rd, 2006, 11:21 am
    fastfoodsnob wrote:
    c8w wrote:With this coupon, you can get a Chilli Chicken entree (the second best
    Chilli Chicken in the city IMHO, after Chopal), and, say, a Kadai Lamb
    entree for a total of about 9 bucks - thus if there are 2 people
    present, it is a brand new (temporary) entrant in the 5-and-under
    sweepstakes :-)

    Seeing "Chilli Chicken" and "5 bucks" in the same sentence nearly led me to believe that Chopal was having a coupon sale or something. If JK Kabab is nearly as good, however, this could definitely be worth checking out. Thanks for the rec (and heads-up on the coupon)... I'm certainly most interested! :)

    --Dan


    Well, I dont think its *quite* as good as Chopal's - but then I think Chopal's is,
    by far, the best in the city.

    If you go back a few years, IMHO JK Kabab House had *the* best Chilli
    CHicken in the city. Then the owner/chef left... and, a year or so later,
    started Chopal :-) JK had slipped marginally, but is still IMHO probably
    #2 in the Chilli Chicken list. They do decent kababs in general IMHO,
    if not quite at the Khan's level. I used to usually go with their
    #3 combo (IIRC), which was the Chilli Chicken and the Lamb
    Kabab (for about 8 bucks - now you can get 2 for that price
    with a coupon). Decent parathas too IMHO. Friend used to be a
    big fan of their Frontier Chicken (but I havent tried that in a
    while).

    JK also has an all-you-can-eat Tandoori Chicken buffet on Friday
    evenings (from about 5-8 or some such) IIRC. I havent actually
    tried this yet, however :-)


    c8w
  • Post #111 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:09 pm
    Post #111 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:09 pm Post #111 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:09 pm
    Jamieson22 wrote:FastFoodSnob- While you were in the area you should have stopped by Tommy's Rock and Roll Cafe on Chicago Ave, near Rockwell. Pretty sure you can walk out of there with a sloppy joe for well under $5.

    Man, sloppy joes... haven't had a good one in a while. I'll see what I can manage the next time I'm in the area. Oh, and thanks for offering up your home-smoked pastrami at Burt's Wednesday night, Jamie. With all the waiting for the second set of pizzas, having a little extra meat on hand was definitely a good thing (to go with Burt's buttered bread).
  • Post #112 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:13 pm
    Post #112 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:13 pm Post #112 - November 3rd, 2006, 3:13 pm
    c8w wrote:If you go back a few years, IMHO JK Kabab House had *the* best Chilli
    CHicken in the city. Then the owner/chef left... and, a year or so later,
    started Chopal :-) JK had slipped marginally, but is still IMHO probably
    #2 in the Chilli Chicken list.

    Ah, now I remember the Chopal thread posts concerning chilli chicken and JK Kabab. Thanks for the reminder!

    c8w wrote:JK also has an all-you-can-eat Tandoori Chicken buffet on Friday
    evenings (from about 5-8 or some such) IIRC. I havent actually
    tried this yet, however :-)

    Ooh, let me know if you ever try this. I tend to shy away from buffets in general, but it is good to have Friday night options that pack a lot of value. Thanks again for all the great recs, c8w; I don't think any of them have failed me so far. (Knock on wood... ;))
  • Post #113 - November 4th, 2006, 3:33 am
    Post #113 - November 4th, 2006, 3:33 am Post #113 - November 4th, 2006, 3:33 am
    Pucca wrote:Sarkis
    2632 Gross Point Rd
    Evanston, IL 60201
    (847) 328-9703

    Finally made the stop late last night as I'd loaded up on Romanian Kosher Sausage Co. hot dogs in the late afternoon and needed something to fill me up in the evening. While hours are listed as 6 A.M. to 6 P.M. Monday to Thursday, 6 A.M. to 10:30 P.M. Friday and Saturday, and 6 A.M. to 4 P.M. Sunday, I learned that they close shop a bit earlier when it gets cold during the winter -- Friday's closing being closer to 10:00 when I stopped by. Thankfully, I got there a quarter to ten, meaning I got to try one of those famous sandwiches and a crisp plate of hash browns. Mmm!

    Pucca wrote:For $5: a ham loretta, hash browns, and a can of pop. I know that the disaster is a favorite among many. I don't make it over here very often so ever since I've had the ham loretta, I've been hard pressed to try anything else. I love the lightly grilled french rolls filled w/perfectly melted Wisconsin brick cheese, ham, and chopped onions & peppers.

    I had to go with the Disaster, but all the sandwiches were selling for $3.50, and regular hash browns were priced at $1.00, bringing my total (with water) to $4.50 including tax. (And tip? I'm not too clear on tipping etiquette at a place like this; I ate at the counter and seemed to be the only customer there.) At any rate, there's really not much to the sandwich: some Sarkis meat topped with cheese, chopped green peppers, and similarly chopped tomatoes (I skipped the onions), all wrapped up in a French roll (from Gonnella?). But throw a little seasoned salt on the freshly grilled contents, and the thing is a late-night lifesaver: it was everything I'd expected and more. The hash browns sitting nearby benefitted from the few random toppings that spilled out of my sandwich, and I ended up not needing the ketchup I brought over after all. What a great meal, and for under five dollars, too. I think I'll have to stop by next time I'm in the area (the general vicinity of Old Orchard) and try the ham loretta next. Awesome recommendation, Pucca!

    Thanks for the lunch/dinner tip,
    Dan
  • Post #114 - November 8th, 2006, 7:59 am
    Post #114 - November 8th, 2006, 7:59 am Post #114 - November 8th, 2006, 7:59 am
    fastfoodsnob wrote:
    c8w wrote:JK also has an all-you-can-eat Tandoori Chicken buffet on Friday
    evenings (from about 5-8 or some such) IIRC. I havent actually
    tried this yet, however :-)

    Ooh, let me know if you ever try this. I tend to shy away from buffets in general, but it is good to have Friday night options that pack a lot of value. Thanks again for all the great recs, c8w; I don't think any of them have failed me so far. (Knock on wood... ;))



    Picked up to go from JK again yesterday - this time Chilli Chicken and
    Frontier Chicken (with paratha, salad and rice), for a grand total of just
    under 9 bucks. Both were very good yesterday.

    In re the Tandoori Chicken thing... I havent tried it, but I dont think its a buffet.
    On asking, it seems that its available from about 6-10 or so on Fridays
    only. For about 8.99 or so, it is an "all you can eat" Tandoori Chicken,
    with paraha/roti and rice (plus the salad). There arent any steam tables
    out there, so I asked, and the impression I got was that they basically
    grill the tandoori chicken and bring it to you as and when needed. Again,
    I havent tried it - but it doesnt sound like a "stale food, steam table"
    situation here, its only the one item that is all-you-can-eat, and only on
    one day of the week (Tandoori Chicken is available as a regular item
    on the menu too IIRC, for about 6 or 7 bucks).

    There is also some kind of a 5 buck lunch special thing - salad, paratha,
    rice, and I think chicken or beef kabab (so that should regularly qualify
    in the "5-bucks-and-under" category.

    c8w
  • Post #115 - November 17th, 2006, 7:17 pm
    Post #115 - November 17th, 2006, 7:17 pm Post #115 - November 17th, 2006, 7:17 pm
    Pucca wrote:
    fastfoodsnob wrote: Any beer-battered places you can recommend, so I can be sure to try the real thing? (Probably a pub, I'd imagine?)
    --Dan

    Darn, I was hoping you'd be able to help me out! I LOVE beer-battered onion rings! They're so good and light but crispy!

    Hmm, turns out they sell beer-battered onion rings near my place after all. Reading Moody's weekly coupon and ads in the Tribune lately (apparently they're in the Sun-Times each Friday, too), they claim: "Beer battered onion rings for $3.50 are a favorite appetizer or late night snack." I wonder whether I can substitute rings for the fries that come with every burger? They probably won't let me (at least, without an upgrade charge), but I guess there's one way to find out....

    Moody's Pub
    5910 N. Broadway
    Chicago, IL 60660
    (773) 275-2696 [The other way to find out...]
    Open 11:30 a.m. until 1:00 a.m. daily, except noon opening Sundays
    No credit cards accepted
    Half-off 2nd sandwich or dinner for dining in w/coupon (also online)
    Free off-street parking next door -- it's a small lot, right?

    Wait, onion rings only "when available"? I like the burgers, but I guess I'd better call ahead if I want rings, just in case.

    --Dan
  • Post #116 - November 17th, 2006, 7:53 pm
    Post #116 - November 17th, 2006, 7:53 pm Post #116 - November 17th, 2006, 7:53 pm
    Finally stopped by The Works the other night for some of their famous gyros. With little but an address (2676 Golf Road) and an intersection (just east of Washington), I set out to quickly scarf down a gyros sandwich and get to my long-awaited movie (er, Superman Returns -- it's a long story). At any rate, a super-hot sandwich in the usual foil wrapping, though I opted for the standard-sized meat in order to stay under five dollars... and to get to my movie on time. The gyros sandwich is $4.55, and the gyros plate -- which has more meat -- goes for $5.60. The take-out menu also advertises a $9.60 1-lb. Gyros offering, but that will have to wait for another day. :P (Extra sauce cost me an extra 40 cents, all pre-tax.) Tasty along the lines of my excellent experience at Charcoal Delights, but a lot further out in the suburbs than my standard stop at the Backyard Grill (sometimes good for Bears games when necessary). A very worthwhile trip, but I didn't get to sample the fries, which I believe Mhays's significant other recommended.

    The Works ("Try Our Famous Gyros"; in the Talisman Village shopping center on the northeast corner of Golf & Washington)
    2676 Golf Road
    Glenview, IL 60025
    (847) 724-0616
    11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday thru Friday, 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Sunday

    --Dan
  • Post #117 - November 17th, 2006, 8:11 pm
    Post #117 - November 17th, 2006, 8:11 pm Post #117 - November 17th, 2006, 8:11 pm
    I'm surprised this one hasn't been mentioned. At Thai Grocery, you can get a three item combo for $4.75. Last time I was there I had basil chicken, beef with eggs in a brown sauce and pork with kaffir lime leaves over jasmine rice. It was amazingly good if not quite hot enough as I sat in my car eating it.

    Thai Grocery
    Broadway at Argyle.
  • Post #118 - January 4th, 2007, 8:56 pm
    Post #118 - January 4th, 2007, 8:56 pm Post #118 - January 4th, 2007, 8:56 pm
    trixie-pea wrote:...For my lunch under $5, I'd say a Cubano w/ black beans and rice at La Unica. You could probably squeeze in some plantains too and still stay under the $5 mark. Or you could skip the plantains and use your change to buy a big-ole-bag of dried chiles.

    ...

    La Unica
    1515 W Devon
    (773) 274-7788

    Time for a little thread resurrection. :) After driving in the pouring rain early this evening -- and going down the wrong way (well, south instead of north) to find the Wiener Circle on Clark -- I decided the most reasonable thing to do at 5 P.M. would be to celebrate a cheap phone purchase with my first meal at La Unica, home of Cuban delights.

    The traffic on Devon's not terribly amusing in bad weather, but there's a parking lot for Unica patrons right next to the Food Mart (as it's called on its business card), directly west of the market/restaurant if you drive. I only determined this after feeding the meter a quarter for an hour's peace of mind, but that's a small price to pay for a useful bit of knowledge and a new dining experience.

    After I wound through the aisles to the back of the food mart, a turn to the left revealed the dining area that would be my home for the next 45 minutes. I quickly ordered a sandwich Cubano for $3.49 and waited at a table in silence while the bread was flattened with a certain amount of metal and heat. Ten minutes later, I had my sandwich. It looked somewhat smaller than I'd expected, but it was a tasty way to satisfy my growing, but not quite gnawing, hunger.

    Considering that this is the Lunch Under $5 [List] thread, I figured that I should try to maximize my meal money since the Cuban might feel a little lonely in my tummy (all by itself). After scanning the laminated LTH GNR award on the nearby wall for recommendations, I decided to just order what fit under the five-dollar rule, resulting in a $1.49 taco de asada, which turned out even better than the Cuban. While the help defaulted to the red salsa bottle when I asked for some, I do wonder whether the green salsa was hotter or not. Made-to-order food = the awesome. :D

    Total pre-tax: $4.98; post: $5.43, paid after I was done eating. A great rainy-day pick-me-up, if I do say so myself. A trip like this makes me want to take a Spanish language course, though, just to get all the pronunciations right. (What was oxtail listed under again?)

    I'll just have some water, thanks,
    Dan
  • Post #119 - January 4th, 2007, 9:03 pm
    Post #119 - January 4th, 2007, 9:03 pm Post #119 - January 4th, 2007, 9:03 pm
    trixie-pea wrote:...Or you could skip the plantains and use your change to buy a big-ole-bag of dried chiles....

    Incidentally, I didn't check, but does La Unica sell crushed red-pepper flakes in bulk? I could probably use a bag. If not, I guess I could stroll down Devon near Western and see what the markets there have to offer. Thanks in advance.

    All fired up,
    Dan
  • Post #120 - January 4th, 2007, 11:17 pm
    Post #120 - January 4th, 2007, 11:17 pm Post #120 - January 4th, 2007, 11:17 pm
    I had a won ton soup..big bowl, not the little one for 4.50 at Kow Kow today in Lincolnwood. It's the cheapest thing on their lunch special menu.

    It's a large bowl with won tons, pan fried noodles some veggies and about 1/4 LB of sliced pork placed on top. it's my favorite there for lunch.

    Now being that this thread started in 2005 and it's now 2007 shouldn't there be some room for inflation? I mention this because there are a bunch of 5.50 and 5.95 things on their lunch special menu which generally are YOOGE, meaning I take home 1/2 of the meal cause I can't finish it all.

    Kow Kow
    Pratt and Cicero
    Lincolnwood

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