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Karamela
(now closed) A South Loop cafe with a sweet side

Chicago

People often acquire a taste for the sweeter things in life during childhood, as evidenced by the tendency for most nursery schools to play lots of U2. But some of those people go on to open sweets businesses, like the gal behind Karamela, whose family ran several suburban restaurants that inspired her to channel her sweet tooth into a Euro-style bakery and cafe sporting a 360-degree counter stocked with treats, and surrounded by amber walls sporting comically oversized silverware

Sure, she's stocking a DIY soft serve machine and toppings bar for old times' sake, but things also get more sophisticated with pastries like creme-layered mille feuille, macarons (salted caramel, red velvet), and sweet crepes -- try getting your banana/ Nutella/ walnut Bonanza with an infusion of bacon (NOTE: you must provide your own old-timey theme music). In case you were like, "My psychic tells me I only like savory items", they've got you covered too, weirdo, with crepes filled with brie/ fig preserves/ caramelized onion, and sammies on fresh baguettes stacked with goat cheese 'n ratatouille.

In the caffeine department, they've got a choice between Greek-style (similar to Turkish) coffee, or lattes made with Julius Meinl from Vienna, either of which'll ensure you're on the way to having A Beautiful Day.

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1. Karamela 1250 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605

People often acquire a taste for the sweeter things in life during childhood, as evidenced by the tendency for most nursery schools to play lots of U2. But some of those people go on to open sweets businesses, like the gal behind Karamela, whose family ran several suburban restaurants that inspired her to channel her sweet tooth into a Euro-style bakery and cafe sporting a 360-degree counter stocked with treats, and surrounded by amber walls sporting comically oversized silverware.

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