Best BYOB’s Chicago
The fall equinox creeps closer every day. September 23. When I look at the calendar now, it reminds me of all the times my mom used to drive me passed middle school the summer after I turned twelve years old.
“Don’t look it at!” I’d scream before diving onto the floor mats, which were always caked with the mud I’d track in after soccer practice. “If you don’t see Emerson, it’s like it doesn’t exist. And if it doesn’t exist, I never have to go back and then summer will go on forever!”
This is me still. A decade and three years later, I avoid eye contact with anything and everything that symbolizes the end of summer. Except the knee-high boot section of Nordstrom’s fall catalog. Naturally.
It’s just so weird because yesterday I fell asleep upset after I dented my bumper when my car slid into the back of an F-150 during the polar vortex, and today I woke up and there were only 11 days left in August.
Obviously, I am dreaming.
And in this dream I must be having, my mind has somehow found a way to conjure up very seemingly real memories of twelve BYOB’s that I supposedly visited during this phantom summer that I’m expected to believe I already had.
This reminds me of something that’s bothered me for much of my adult life, which is how Romy and Michele’s high school reunion would have gone way better for them had Michele just remembered the freaking recipe for glue from her dream. I mean, hello? If you have a dream that tells you to, “raise the viscosity by adding a complex glucose derivative during the emulsification process,” then you write that $#!* down! I just don’t get it.
So in case this is really only a dream and summer is still just around the corner, I’m writing down my personal list of the Best BYOB’s on Chicago’s North Side.
90 Miles Cuban
2540 W. Armitage
Favorites: Mariquitas, Choripan, Ropa Vieja
3763 N. Southport
Favorites: Provoleta, Pez
Enso Sushi & Bar
1613 N. Damen
Favorites: Comiskey Park Maki, Crispy Spicy Tuna Maki
1865 N. Milwaukee
Favorites: Guacamole, El Tico, Pepito Sandwich
Dawali Mediterranean Kitchen
1625 N. Halsted
Favorites: Spicy hummus, Chicken and Beef Shawerma
Butcher and the Burger
1021 W. Armitage
Favorites: Anything with truffle mayo and an egg
3023 N. Broadway
Favorites: Corn Masa Memelas, Flautas
807 W. Webster
Favorites: Gyros, Chicken Kalamata Style, Fries
(*Technically not a BYOB unless you count buying a drink next door at Glasscott’s and bringing that over – which I do).
2211 W. North Ave.
Favorites: Croque Madame
Lush Wine & Spirits
2232 W. Roscoe Street
Favorites: Meat & Cheese Platter
2534 N. Lincoln Ave.
Favorites: Miami Roll, Philadelphia Roll
2057 W. North Ave
Favorites: Falafel, Salad Bar