Walter’s Favorites:  Takeout & Delivery

Nando's Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL

Nando’s Michigan Ave – Chicago, IL   Photography – Emilia Czader

Our home city of Chicago has a food and beverage scene that rivals any city in the world.  With the current crisis and shelter in place restrictions, our friends and clients in the restaurant industry have pivoted and focused their energy on takeout and delivery business.  We have been very impressed with the creative ideas and delicious food & drinks many restaurants have been providing during this time.  One trend that we do hope sticks around after we all go back to our normal lives – drinks to-go.  Whether it is beer deliveries offered by your favorite brewery or a cocktail kit with handcrafted mixers, there are great options being offered by many restaurants.  Please support your favorite restaurants — so that they can support their team and reopen their doors when this crisis ends.

Our resident restaurant and wine guru is VP and Principal, Walter Pancewicz.  Whether it is the best new restaurant in the city or a classic mainstay, you can always depend on Walter to give a great recommendation. Here are a few of his current favorites for take-out and delivery options….

Cruz Blanca & Lena Brava: Part of the Bayless enclave in the West Loop, Cruz Blanca, and Lena Brava are offering a combined takeout and delivery menu – with family-style options from Lena Brava’s menu.  They are also offering several cocktail kits and their delicious beer.  Don’t forget about brunch too – they have bloody mary and mimosa kits to pair with their breakfast tacos.

Alinea: Chicago’s only 3-star Michelin restaurant is trying their hand at takeout for the first time and selling out very quickly. The rotating menu that is focused on comfort food – items that translate well for takeout. Some of the menu items do include instructions for heating them up – and don’t forget to try your hand at plating your food in true Alinea style.

Café Spiaggia:  Spiagga is closed during this time – but the chefs of Spiagga are helping out at their sister restaurant – Café Spiaggia.   Takeout and delivery are both being offered, along with offering family meals for 4, in partnership with other Levy restaurants.

Bonci: Best pizza in Rome…and Chicago. If you haven’t tried this pizza yet– they have more topping options than you can imagine on the best Roman-style crust. We partnered with the Bonci team to bring their concept to the states. They have consolidated their operations right now and are offering carryout and delivery out of the Bonci West Loop location.

A Tavola:  This small Italian restaurant has the best gnocchi in the city (other than Walter’s mom’s recipe). Takeout available.

Frontera Grill & Xoco:  Our favorite little Mezcal bar – Bar Sotano –  is closed right now, but Rick Bayless’s classic mainstays Frontera Grill and Xoco are open for takeout and delivery. They are also offering margarita kits and some great happy hour specials!   If you get a chance, also check out Chef Rick’s live cooking videos that he posted on Facebook recently – the Roasted Poblano Corn chowder is especially delicious.

Tango Sur:  Great authentic Argentinian food – a classic mainstay in the Southport neighborhood. Pickup and delivery are available.

Next: Next is revisiting their Italia menu and offering it for takeout.  We can’t wait to see what is up next on their menu!

Nando’s:  Our favorite South African concept is serving both delivery and takeout.  Don’t forget to add a bottle of their sauce to your order too, it is delicious on everything and makes an amazing marinade which is why their chicken is so addictive.

Nando Milano Trattoria: Another Nando’s – but this one is from Italy.  Mid-priced Italian food with authentic recipes from Italy. Pickup and delivery options are both available.

Perry’s Steakhouse & Grille – Oakbrook: We expanded this list to include the Chicago area just so we can include Perry’s.  If you haven’t tried Perry’s yet their food is delicious and their pork chop is literally to die for – a 7 finger tall and 32 oz chop is smoked and finished on the grill. They typically have a lunch special on Fridays with a lunch size portion of their chop – a smaller portion which is still quite large and a great value   During the crisis they have added a Wednesday lunch special too and for Social Distancing Social Hour — they are offering cocktail kits and bottles of wine to go.