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Smak-Tak - great Polish in Jefferson Park

Smak-Tak - great Polish in Jefferson Park
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  • Post #181 - November 11th, 2012, 8:42 am
    Post #181 - November 11th, 2012, 8:42 am Post #181 - November 11th, 2012, 8:42 am
    stevez wrote:
    milz50 wrote:I think both Brad and Steve are misinformed re: check please (although perhaps Steve saw the episode before the check please site said the episode would premier)...the episode will premier Friday, November 16th. Hopefully Smak Tak was just closed for lunch yesterday. I really like the restaurant and it is a restaurant that I learned about solely because of LTH.


    It might have been a teaser for that episode that I saw, but it was definitely Smak Tak being featured on Check Please that I saw yesterday.

    ok...if you could turn on your TV and let me know who wins tonight's Bears game that would be appreciated :)
  • Post #182 - November 11th, 2012, 10:02 am
    Post #182 - November 11th, 2012, 10:02 am Post #182 - November 11th, 2012, 10:02 am
    milz50 wrote:
    stevez wrote:
    milz50 wrote:I think both Brad and Steve are misinformed re: check please (although perhaps Steve saw the episode before the check please site said the episode would premier)...the episode will premier Friday, November 16th. Hopefully Smak Tak was just closed for lunch yesterday. I really like the restaurant and it is a restaurant that I learned about solely because of LTH.


    It might have been a teaser for that episode that I saw, but it was definitely Smak Tak being featured on Check Please that I saw yesterday.

    ok...if you could turn on your TV and let me know who wins tonight's Bears game that would be appreciated :)


    Eenie meenie chili beanie the spirits are about to speak. :wink:
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #183 - November 11th, 2012, 11:39 am
    Post #183 - November 11th, 2012, 11:39 am Post #183 - November 11th, 2012, 11:39 am
    BR wrote:And I see you're right, debuting the 16th. Hoping they'll be open for it.
    Went old school, POTS, Smak-Tak is open until 8pm today.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #184 - November 11th, 2012, 12:17 pm
    Post #184 - November 11th, 2012, 12:17 pm Post #184 - November 11th, 2012, 12:17 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    BR wrote:And I see you're right, debuting the 16th. Hoping they'll be open for it.
    Went old school, POTS, Smak-Tak is open until 8pm today.

    I am delighted the plain old telephone service worked!

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #185 - November 19th, 2012, 11:06 pm
    Post #185 - November 19th, 2012, 11:06 pm Post #185 - November 19th, 2012, 11:06 pm
    I recently visited Smak-Tak for the first time. Yes, I'm really late to the party, and very sad that I put it off for so long. My meal was spectacular. The "Hungarian pancake" was more than I had hoped for, even after reading the glowing reviews. It's much more than simply a pancake stuffed with goulash, every aspect of it was impressive: a giant portion of goulash served on a perfectly fried thin and crispy potato pancake, not lacking any flavor on it's own. Everything was so amply spiced and rich that I almost felt as if I wasn't eating polish food. I grew up in a polish family and I've only had food close to this good a couple of times, from my great grandmother. Having never had Polish food as good as home cooking, I assumed that restaurants just couldn't live up to the quality of a home cooked polish meal, but I'm so happy to have Smak-Tak prove that theory wrong.
    Part of the secret of a success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

    -Mark Twain
  • Post #186 - January 27th, 2013, 9:22 pm
    Post #186 - January 27th, 2013, 9:22 pm Post #186 - January 27th, 2013, 9:22 pm
    Perfect place to visit on an ice-storm night. Food was excellent, as always, but the mushroom soup special was the stand out item. Tasted just like my grandmother used to make from the imported dried mushrooms that used to be impossible to get back during the cold war days.
  • Post #187 - November 26th, 2013, 8:30 am
    Post #187 - November 26th, 2013, 8:30 am Post #187 - November 26th, 2013, 8:30 am
    Perhaps this was common knowledge, and I'm the only one who wasn't in the know, but through years of listing Smak-Tak among my favorites restaurants in Chicago, rarely coming into town without visiting, I only just learned today what the name translates to.

    Smak-Tak = Flavor-Yes

    Love it.
    Dominic Armato
    Dining Critic
    The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com
  • Post #188 - November 26th, 2013, 9:48 am
    Post #188 - November 26th, 2013, 9:48 am Post #188 - November 26th, 2013, 9:48 am
    Dmnkly wrote:Perhaps this was common knowledge, and I'm the only one who wasn't in the know, but through years of listing Smak-Tak among my favorites restaurants in Chicago, rarely coming into town without visiting, I only just learned today what the name translates to.

    Smak-Tak = Flavor-Yes

    Love it.


    True dat.
    "Smak" is also the base word for the Polish expression for Bon Appetit: "Smacznego"

    For those with holiday entertaining to do and limited energy, the catering menu on the website is worth a look. I especially recommend the duck stuffed with fruit.
    smaktak.com
  • Post #189 - December 3rd, 2013, 2:51 pm
    Post #189 - December 3rd, 2013, 2:51 pm Post #189 - December 3rd, 2013, 2:51 pm
    I just made it out to Smak-Tak this weekend. I'm hard to please with a history of Polish grandmother food, and I found out we did things weird (pierogies always browned in butter, no tomato on our gołąbki, etc). But I very much enjoyed our meal. I still wanted to crisp up the pierogies, but the dough was good and obviously fresh. We also had potato pancakes, and they were thin & crispy, just like I like them.

    How does everyone order there? Seems like you want a smattering, but everything is a dedicated dish. I wanted kielbasa, pierogies, potato pancakes, but I'd have had leftovers for days!

    Also, I forgot to ask when I was there...do they make their own kielbasa or get it from someplace like nearby Andy's?
  • Post #190 - December 3rd, 2013, 3:06 pm
    Post #190 - December 3rd, 2013, 3:06 pm Post #190 - December 3rd, 2013, 3:06 pm
    madopal wrote:How does everyone order there? Seems like you want a smattering, but everything is a dedicated dish. I wanted kielbasa, pierogies, potato pancakes, but I'd have had leftovers for days!

    Hi,

    You can ask if they will do what you want. The owner is seemingly almost always there. He may just do it for you.

    You can invite friends who like to share plates, then try a smattering of everything. If your friends are not that type. you can post a dinner get together on our Events board and make a few new friends who will share.

    I find leftovers of food I like just divine! We finally finished Thanksgiving dinner at lunch today. :D

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #191 - January 31st, 2014, 9:08 am
    Post #191 - January 31st, 2014, 9:08 am Post #191 - January 31st, 2014, 9:08 am
    If this January hasn't been Smak Tak weather, I don't know what is. Their soups are perfect for the cold and snow outside. The other night we each happily ate gigantic bowls of the delicious stuff--mushroom, filled with Polish dried mushrooms, orzo, and other goodies; red borsch with mini-pierogies (the name says it all); and substantial chicken noodle soup with real chicken, a few well-chosen veggies, and lovely kluski. Somehow we still managed to eat full dinners after that. Their menu doesn't change, but it is large and everything is good. On a Wednesday night at 8:00, we were, once again, the only people in the restaurant. If you haven't been to Smak Tak in a while, it's a very good time to go. Always easy parking, great cold-weather food, and very inexpensive.
  • Post #192 - February 2nd, 2014, 9:49 am
    Post #192 - February 2nd, 2014, 9:49 am Post #192 - February 2nd, 2014, 9:49 am
    I'm happy to report that when we walked in on Friday night at 7:30, there was only one table for us. The mushroom soup (as all soups are there) was excellent. The breaded pork cutlet with mushrooms was crispy and delicious.

    The restaurant was pretty much empty by 8:15. We theorized that folks often find it to be empty is because they are not sitting down at 6:30.
  • Post #193 - August 24th, 2014, 10:39 am
    Post #193 - August 24th, 2014, 10:39 am Post #193 - August 24th, 2014, 10:39 am
    Dinner here last night was great, in spite of a couple of annoying glitches. The bottom line is that the food was as excellent as ever, across the board: mushroom soup, potato pancakes, Hungarian pancake, bigos (on the menu here as Hunter Stew) and Grilled Polish Sausage with amazing sauerkraut. 2 dozen pierogi were also delicious but unfortunately, we were not served the fillings we ordered. In spite of there being no sauerkraut in any of them, the ones with other fillings were excellent.

    We asked about a Chicken special and we told it was not breaded. However, it was and by the time it was brought to the table, the place was near closing and nobody wanted to wait for a replacement to be made. That said, it was essentially a chicken schnitzel and it was delicious, even though it wasn't what the person who ordered it wanted. As we approach fall, I'll be increasing my frequency of visits here.

    And before dinner we had a very nice pre-game at Fischman's on Milwaukee. Great bartender (Robert), a solid tap list, a very nice assortment of American whiskeys and a fine jukebox. The liquor attached liquor store stocks some real gems, too.

    =R=

    Fischman Liquors and Tavern
    4780 N Milwaukee Ave
    Chicago, IL 60630
    (773) 545-0123
    By protecting others, you save yourself. If you only think of yourself, you'll only destroy yourself. --Kambei Shimada

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #194 - December 4th, 2014, 10:06 pm
    Post #194 - December 4th, 2014, 10:06 pm Post #194 - December 4th, 2014, 10:06 pm
    Going to Smak Tak this weekend and wondering if anyone knows whether there are mushrooms in the Hunter Stew?

    Also, any suggested wine or beer that goes great with this food
  • Post #195 - December 5th, 2014, 7:30 am
    Post #195 - December 5th, 2014, 7:30 am Post #195 - December 5th, 2014, 7:30 am
    Cathy2 wrote:Do you have a recipe for golabki that you like?

    My 88-year-old friend Mom2 has been on an endless journey for the perfect golabki all her life


    Cathy--hope its not too late, but over in Shopping and Cooking I've posted a Stuffed Cabbage recipe for you to try out this weekend. Its sort of a companion to the the Chicken Vesuvio recipe I posted long ago. Enjoy
    Chicago is my spiritual chow home
  • Post #196 - January 9th, 2017, 11:34 am
    Post #196 - January 9th, 2017, 11:34 am Post #196 - January 9th, 2017, 11:34 am
    Wanted to provide a data point that Smak-Tak is still doing delicious things. Mushroom soup was excellent. Chicken noodle was enjoyed by Mr. X; I thought it resembled Mrs. Grass's soup. Hungarian pancake still filling and satisfying. Mr. X dug his breaded pork cutlet with mushrooms. Perfect meal for a frigid Sunday evening.
    -Mary
  • Post #197 - January 9th, 2017, 2:17 pm
    Post #197 - January 9th, 2017, 2:17 pm Post #197 - January 9th, 2017, 2:17 pm
    Hi,

    Was at Smak Tak before going to the Salvation Army to served dinner. I had their mushroom soup and a plate of pierogi: potato and mushroom-sauerkraut.

    My sister ordered the special: mushroom and rice filled cabbage rolls suitable for a Polish Christmas Eve. She enjoyed the borscht with dumplings, too.

    One friend ordered their tripe soup, which was very delicate and the tripe tender.

    As The GP pointed out, Smak Tak is still serving great Polish food.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #198 - March 1st, 2017, 8:37 am
    Post #198 - March 1st, 2017, 8:37 am Post #198 - March 1st, 2017, 8:37 am
    I was with some LTHers last night at Smak Tak for the household exchange dinner. Our group had a smattering of many items.

    laikom wrote:The "Hungarian pancake" was more than I had hoped for, even after reading the glowing reviews.
    The Hungarian Pancake was a standout for me also.

    I was thrilled with the sauerkraut peirogi. Potato pancakes were very good.

    The meat filled Silesian Dumplings were far too doughy, the ground meat filling was really tasty, just too much dough.

    I enjoyed the fruit stuffed duck, while overcooked (meat fell apart like pot roast, skin not crisp all over), the duck was tasty and the prunes were delicious.
    I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be.
  • Post #199 - March 5th, 2017, 7:54 pm
    Post #199 - March 5th, 2017, 7:54 pm Post #199 - March 5th, 2017, 7:54 pm
    The Hungarian pancake was the standout for me at the LTH dinner.
  • Post #200 - March 5th, 2017, 9:15 pm
    Post #200 - March 5th, 2017, 9:15 pm Post #200 - March 5th, 2017, 9:15 pm
    lougord99 wrote:The Hungarian pancake was the standout for me at the LTH dinner.

    I almost always order the Hungarian pancake--I can't help it. I also love their soups, especially the mushroom.
  • Post #201 - February 3rd, 2021, 1:40 pm
    Post #201 - February 3rd, 2021, 1:40 pm Post #201 - February 3rd, 2021, 1:40 pm
    We did a carry-out lunch from Smak-Tak recently. We split a mushroom soup and the Hungarian pancake. I love their mushroom soup. There's a great mix of fresh and reconstituted mushrooms and a ton of fresh dill. The Hungarian pancake continues to shine, even after a delay from pick-up to eating it. (we were running errands and put the food in a cooler bag.)

    I'm sure they could use the business. You will be full and happy like we were.
    -Mary

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