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Phoenix Flame Cafe- Modern Mediterranean and Latin in Niles

Phoenix Flame Cafe- Modern Mediterranean and Latin in Niles
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  • Phoenix Flame Cafe- Modern Mediterranean and Latin in Niles

    Post #1 - January 7th, 2021, 11:14 am
    Post #1 - January 7th, 2021, 11:14 am Post #1 - January 7th, 2021, 11:14 am
    Had a delicious carryout meal last night from Phoenix Flame Café in Niles (it's tucked behind the Village Creamery; on Waukegan at Oakton). We tried tacos, an empanada, a steak wrap, and the mixed flame (from the menu: two sliced pork, two short rib and one thin Mediterranean sausage served with seasonal vegetables and phoenix potatoes).

    Everything was very tasty and flavorful, especially the sauces. Food was packed with care and included garnishes. The fries were fresh cut and excellent; phoenix potatoes were roasted and well seasoned wedges. The meat in the mixed flame plate was all outstanding (forced to choose, I’d say the short rib was my favorite) and our favorite taco was the shrimp.

    Spoke with one of the owners when we picked up and he was kind and friendly. Looking forward to trying more of the menu!

    https://phoenixflame.net/menu

    Phoenix Flame Café
    8010 N. Waukegan Rd, Niles
    Tuesday- Sunday 11 AM – 9 PM
    847-779-3474
  • Post #2 - January 7th, 2021, 3:59 pm
    Post #2 - January 7th, 2021, 3:59 pm Post #2 - January 7th, 2021, 3:59 pm
    Could you expand on what makes the sausage "mediterranean"?
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #3 - January 7th, 2021, 4:38 pm
    Post #3 - January 7th, 2021, 4:38 pm Post #3 - January 7th, 2021, 4:38 pm
    JoelF wrote:Could you expand on what makes the sausage "mediterranean"?


    I can try! It's a thin sausage, served in a coiled shape, and to me the dominant spice is cumin.
  • Post #4 - January 7th, 2021, 4:48 pm
    Post #4 - January 7th, 2021, 4:48 pm Post #4 - January 7th, 2021, 4:48 pm
    I have no idea what these sausages were, but I make a lot of different sausages. If you put in the seasonings of that region, you have a sausage of that region. Certainly, that is what a cajun ( andoullie ) sausage is, or chorizo.

    https://www.food.com/recipe/mediterrane ... age-438151
  • Post #5 - January 7th, 2021, 6:50 pm
    Post #5 - January 7th, 2021, 6:50 pm Post #5 - January 7th, 2021, 6:50 pm
    la* wrote:
    JoelF wrote:Could you expand on what makes the sausage "mediterranean"?


    I can try! It's a thin sausage, served in a coiled shape, and to me the dominant spice is cumin.

    Didn't mean to sound too cynical. The Med is a big place. It could have been Spanish butifarra, Greek loukaniko, Balkan cevapcici, North African Merguez, kefta kebab...
    What is patriotism, but the love of good things we ate in our childhood?
    -- Lin Yutang
  • Post #6 - August 6th, 2021, 5:50 pm
    Post #6 - August 6th, 2021, 5:50 pm Post #6 - August 6th, 2021, 5:50 pm
    Hi,

    It was haircut day for my parents who had not had their manes touched in a year. My Dad has worn a full beard since 1971. This no touchee the beard for the last year has transformed him to a faux ZZ Top band member or perhaps his Father whom I called the 'Old Timer.'

    When we walked in our favored hairstylist whipped out a take-out menu from Phoenix Flame Cafe. This is located kitty corner from H-Mart, across the street from Niles Library and in the same corner lot where Village Creamery is located.

    This hairstylist loves their food, which she described as Mediterranean with a Latin twist. I don't understand that, either, so it was funny to see it mentioned above. She does love the yucca fries, which is not usually associated with the Mediterranean.

    Sadly, the great parental ship was already aimed toward China Chef for eggrolls, wonton soup and whatever else amused us.

    I have to admit a curiosity about this place, because this gal was uncharacteristically enthusiastic. I hope to get there sometime soon.

    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 #7 - August 6th, 2021, 6:30 pm
    Post #7 - August 6th, 2021, 6:30 pm Post #7 - August 6th, 2021, 6:30 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:I have to admit a curiosity about this place, because this gal was uncharacteristically enthusiastic. I hope to get there sometime soon.

    I work a mile from here, go to H-Mart all the time and have managed to never even notice it (I do keep my eyes on the road). Seems like an ideal prospective venue for an LTH North lunch . . .

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #8 - August 6th, 2021, 6:38 pm
    Post #8 - August 6th, 2021, 6:38 pm Post #8 - August 6th, 2021, 6:38 pm
    You really have to go looking for the place. It's in an awkward corner of a not easy to get into parking lot.

    I've eaten there a few times and I'm not sure what I think about it. My favorite item was the pineapple pork taco. The empanadas were quite bland.

    Also not sure there's much room inside to eat.

    Giovanna
    =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=

    "Enjoy every sandwich."

    -Warren Zevon
  • Post #9 - August 6th, 2021, 8:33 pm
    Post #9 - August 6th, 2021, 8:33 pm Post #9 - August 6th, 2021, 8:33 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    Cathy2 wrote:I have to admit a curiosity about this place, because this gal was uncharacteristically enthusiastic. I hope to get there sometime soon.

    I work a mile from here, go to H-Mart all the time and have managed to never even notice it (I do keep my eyes on the road). Seems like an ideal prospective venue for an LTH North lunch . . .

    =R=

    No room for parking your RV. 8)
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #10 - October 17th, 2021, 11:53 pm
    Post #10 - October 17th, 2021, 11:53 pm Post #10 - October 17th, 2021, 11:53 pm
    The Small Household Food Exchange got together at Phoenix Flame tonight. I think we all agreed the food was surprisingly good. As mentioned above, it's not easy to find — it's at the far end of a small strip mall behind Village Creamery. The owner is Bulgarian, and has experience as a manager at Spiaggia; his wife/chef worked at Gibson's — pretty good pedigree for such a small, out of the way place. He describes much of his food as Mediterranean, meaning it's influenced by many of the countries that border that sea.

    We started with an appetizer of grilled octopus, normally three pieces, but since there were four of us, he threw in another. Perfectly cooked, melt-in-the-mouth tender (although to nitpick, I could have used a bit more char for a grilled item). Still, excellent.
    Image

    The appetizer described as "Martinez Cups" was three cups of napa cabbage, avocado poblano sauce, and one each topped with octopus, shrimp, or salmon. Later in the meal, Sr. Martinez, who inspired the dish, came by the restaurant. Interesting combination of flavors and textures.
    Image

    Our last appetizer was Green Plantains Chips with avocado-pico — an interesting take on typical chips and guac. The plantain chips were almost unbelievably light.
    Image

    The Mediterranean Sausage was a small, coiled sausage with potatoes and vegetables. I couldn't identify the spicing, but it was tasty.
    Image

    The owner said this is the way chicken skewers are served in Bulgaria — with plenty of fries, and a feta-based salad.
    Image

    Flavorful, well-marinated short ribs and sliced pork, with potatoes and vegetables. (photo courtesy of C2)
    Image

    We finished with a dessert of Pumpkin Flan, although it seemed more like a mousse with a slightly crunchy topping. Not too sweet, and not especially pumpkin-y, but a fine end to a large meal.
    Image

    Phoenix Flame definitely qualifies as a hidden gem, and (IMHO) is worthy of GNR status, when that program gets going again.

    Note — if images aren't displaying, check your adblocker, and make an exception for advertising-marketing.com.
  • Post #11 - December 29th, 2021, 6:45 pm
    Post #11 - December 29th, 2021, 6:45 pm Post #11 - December 29th, 2021, 6:45 pm
    We are still frequenting Phoenix Flame and have honed in on the sandwiches as our favorite menu items. The Niles Hot Chicken sandwich is an outstanding fried chicken sandwich. The name does not really suit it as it is not Nashville style hot chicken nor is it really that spicy at all. It has a herby sauce that has a little kick, but overall it's just an excellent fried chicken sandwich.
    I also really like the John Hogan NY Strip Steak sandwich (8oz NY strip steak, served with avocado-pico, swiss cheese, pickled onions, spicy yogurt sauce and fresh cucumbers on a French roll.) The fries are fresh cut and travel surprisingly well.

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