Every now and again I leave my comfort zone of the tri-‘hood area of Logan Square, Wicker Park and Bucktown to explore more of Chicago’s local dining establishments. I recently took the 49 bus to North Center to try Chicago Joe’s, the family restaurant of a good friend of mine (if you know much of Florida, he played for my alma mater UCF‘s basketball team). I now know what it must be like to frequent the “Cheers” bar, because at Chicago Joe’s, everybody seems to know your name.
Open since 1988, the inside represents what Bennigan’s and TGIFridays chains aspire to be: an eclectic collection of decorative artifacts nailed to or draped on the wall, hanging from the ceiling, affixed to columns holding up the bar. In the summertime, they have a spacious 80-seat patio.
What they’re famous for: They have nearly everything you could think of for a family-style restaurant, but what they’re most known for is their burgers, aptly called cheezeborgers. All contain prime Angus beef, and have Chicago-inspired titles: the Bears Sunday Shuffle (a sloppy joe with pepper jack and cheddar cheeses and onion), the China Town (teriyaki sauce, grilled pineapple and cheddar cheese), and the Wrigleyville Fully Loaded (smoked bacon, housemade barbecue sauce).
They’re constantly having specials like .40 cent wings and $3.99 sloppy Joe’s, and handing out $10-off-your-next-meal coupons, so they’re eager for more loyal customers.
Stop in and mention Next Date Chicago and get a free dessert with your meal purchase.
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