PETA is the worst, for so many reasons -- but this week's? They put an attack billboard literally across the street from revered butcher shop and restaurant Publican Quality Meats. It’s bad enough to make you wanna thaw out next Thanksgiving’s turducken right now.
See? The worst, right? Well, thanks to the bleeding hearts at PETA, we've set out to conquer even MORE meat, in more creative ways, beginning with these eight ridiculously meat-filled meals.
CHARCUTERIE PLATE at PUBLICAN QUALITY MEATS (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: Starting at the source of the billboard beef, PQM goes to great lengths (by using free-range animals that have natural diets without steroids or antibiotics and are slaughtered humanely) to put out their range of amazing meats. The standout is their daily, rotating charcuterie plate featuring cured meat, rillettes, and pâté.
BACON BOMB at PADDY LONG'S (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: The word bacon appears on Paddy Long’s menu 42 times. The 5lb Bacon Bomb has a nucleus of beef and pork sausage with cracked pepper-bacon that’s then wrapped in weaved-bacon and rubbed with brown sugar before grilling. If you can’t handle an entire Bomb, you can also get a nice wedge of it in sandwich form.
CRUSTLESS PIZZA at LOU MALNATI'S (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: A hidden, meaty menu option, Lou’s Crustless Pie actually does have a crust: the deep dish buttercrust has just been replaced with a base made of sausage. The crust… is made… of sausage. Top it with pepperoni or double-down on the sausage.
ANIMAL SERVICE at FRONTIER (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: Frontier could film a sequel to the very popular Matt Damon movie, called We Bought a Zoo 2: We Ate the Zoo. From llamas, lambs and gators to wild boar and suckling pig, the Big Game eatery will leave you sufficiently stuffed and taking home whatever carrion is left.
FRIED BOLOGNA SANDWICH at AU CHEVAL (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: We could have just as easily placed Au Cheval’s top-tier bacon cheeseburger on here, but its Bologna Sandwich fresh off the flattop holds a special place in our arteries for its piled-high, house-cured mortadella. The brioche bun and melted cheese help to make the bologna sandwich a real meal and not borderline prison food.
FOIE GRAS SAUSAGE at HOT DOUG'S (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: Back in 2006 when foie gras was outlawed, only outlaws would have foie gras. Even in the face of the city's ban (which ended in '08) Hot Doug’s is always a supporter of delicious, fatty, duck liver, offering a foie gras & Sauternes duck sausage with truffle aioli. Lining up on a Friday or Saturday will net you a bonus side of duck-fat fries.
THREE LITTLE PIGGY SANDWICH at THE SILVER PALM (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: Well, we now know how The Three Little Pigs fable ends; it turns out YOU were the wolf the whole time, knocking down houses and howling as you dove into this multi-meat sandwich packed with double-smoked ham, pork tenderloin, AND bacon, topped with Gruyere cheese and a fried egg (available when the dining car restaurant re-opens in April).
WILD BOAR SLOPPY JOE at LONGMAN & EAGLE (click here for address and deets)
What's PETA billboard-worthy: The manliest of manwiches is a top-choice at Longman’s modern inn. It features a heap of finely ground wild boar in Sloppy Joe seasoning, topped with crispy onions and pickled jalapenos with a side of beef-fat fries.
1. Publican Quality Meats825 W Fulton Market, Chicago
2. Paddy Long's1028 W Diversey, Chicago
3. Lou Malnati's Pizzeria439 N Wells St, Chicago
4. Frontier1072 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago
5. Au Cheval800 W Randolph, Chicago
6. Hot Doug's3324 N California Ave, Chicago
7. Longman & Eagle2657 N Kedzie Ave, Chicago
8. Silver Palm768 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago
Publican Quality Meats is something of a triple threat: equal parts butcher shop, café, and boutique grocery store. Aptly located in Chicago's meatpacking district, the shop's acclaim comes mainly from its selection of sausages and cured charcuterie meats, all of which are prepared in the attached whole-animal butcher shop. The café branch of the urban eatery features a full-service barista, an impressive selection of house pastries, and shelves stacked with fresh-baked bread (on which the PQM chefs layer hefty portions of their hand-cured meat for sandwich orders). In addition to staffing both butchers and bakers, the eclectic shop sells a battery of specialty grocery items from artisanal olive oils and spice blends to craft beers and old world wines. Whether searching for a smoked Spanish chorizo, a prosciutto-stuffed sandwich, or jars of preserved tomatoes, PQM has you covered.
Paddy Long's has acquired numerous varieties of Bourbon County Stout for your barrel-aged beer drinking pleasure (which has led to your pleasing barrel shape), tapping this year and last year's original vintages along with variants like vanilla, coffee, and the recently released cherry rye.
With more than 40 locations across the greater Chicago area, Lou Malnati's is synonymous with deep-dish pizza, not least because of its signature buttery and pie-like crust, exclusive sausage blend, and mozzarella that's been sourced from the same Wisconsin dairy farm for more than 40 years. According to pizza lore, Lou's dad probably invented deep-dish pizza and even if he didn't, the chain's reliable pan pies are pretty close to what the original deep-dish tasted like.
It may not be the final frontier, but with ice-taps pouring 16 traditional and seasonal brews, a meat heavy menu featuring specialty sausages, steaks, and "Animal Service", flat screen TVs, and a beer garden, you won't need to explore any further. Allied: Ready yourself for Animal Service with some Smith & Forge, the hard cider that's built strong -- built from Apples and built to Refresh.
This upscale West Loop restaurant is known for its European flair and sophisticated American diner-style eats. Au Cheval usually has a wait out the door at peak dinner hours because it's home to iconic signature items like the fried house-made bologna sandwich and the so-called single burger, which actually comes with two thin patties and is topped with American cheese, house Dijonnaise, pickles, and if you know what's good for you, the optional bacon and fried egg add-ons. The brasserie-like space includes an open kitchen and a bar where local, domestic, and international beers are all on tap.
Billing itself as an "encased meat emporium", Hot Doug's is a temple of Chicago-style char-dogs.
Longman & Eagle, the Michelin-starred gastropub in Logan Square, has an exclusive whiskey selection (clocking in at over 400 labels), a craft cocktail menu, and an extensive beer list all fit for the most pretentious of drinkers, in the least pretentious of atmospheres. Longman takes a flavor-forward, honest approach to eating and drinking, and because it doesn’t accept reservations, there is always a wait for brunch, happy hour, and dinner alike. (And it is always worth it.) While whiskey may be king, the regional American fare has just as much to offer, hence the Michelin star. The menu changes often, but expect anything from beef tallow beignets and veal brains to wild boar sloppy joes, chicken and waffles, and a burger that, if you know what's good for you, you will order.
This American bar/eatery is serving up some of the most decadent meat dishes in all of River West. Head there and dive into Silver Palm's Three Little Piggy sandwich (Anthony Bourdain deemed the railway-car-turned-diner's gut-busting sandwich "the greatest sandwich in America"), and wash it down with some stellar brew.