Hot New Restaurants - June 2010


The "wagon" (in reality, a food truck) part of this naan-wich shop will be on the road soon, but in the meantime you can visit the Gaztro-Wagon storefront in Edgewater to get a taste of its inventive and tasty street food. All served on naan and resembling tortilla wraps, sandwiches include wild boar belly with fennel, yogurt and olives, pork shoulder with cilantro and queso fresco, and chicken thighs with mushrooms and brie. To accompany your naan-wich of choice, don't miss the plantain chips, served with a housemade chimichurri sauce for dipping. If you don't want to make the trip up to Edgewater, follow the restaurant on Twitter (@wherezthewagon) to find out when the truck will be in a neighborhood near you.

Epic Burger

With its second Chicago location in a shopping center on North Avenue, Epic Burger boasts of its use of all-natural beef, buns and veggies from local sources, fresh-cut fries, cage-free organic eggs, nitrate-free bacon and cheese from Wisconsin. The result is a juicy, satisfying burger similar to one you'd find at Steak 'n Shake or Culver's--and I mean that in a good way. There is even certified organic ketchup in which to dip those super-fresh fries. Unlike its South Loop sister, this location is BYOB. However, if a restaurant is going to brag about its dedication to sustainability, it should probably have a recycling bin on hand for those cans and bottles. Hopefully Epic Burger remedies this major oversight before my next visit.


At long last, Wicker Parkers finally have an Indian restaurant in their neighborhood. And they are lining up to get a taste of Cumin's tandoori, biryanis and samosa. But the feast doesn't stop there. The other half of the menu focuses on Nepalese fare, like chicken momo, goat cchoela and pakora. For those who aren't versed in these ethnic cuisines, the menu spells everything out (momo=steamed dumpling, cchoela=marinated meat, pakora=seasoned fritters). Try something you've never had before, and soak it up with one or a few of the dozen naan and bread options.

Black Dog Gelato

You've had it at Sepia, Uncommon Ground and the Logan Square Farmers Market. Now you can experience Black Dog Gelato at its own quaint shop in Ukranian Village. The selection of rotating flavors may include everything from rhubarb to olive oil thyme to goat cheese cashew caramel. In addition to scoops of the creamy Italian treat, other gelato-based desserts include cookie sandwiches and whiskey gelato that is dipped in chocolate and candied bacon. In addition to the new shop, keep your eye out for a gelato cart, which will announce its whereabouts via Twitter and Facebook.

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