The Grid: In Edgewater, tacos, Thai, vegan and everything in between
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Beachfront Edgewater boasts international cuisine, antique shopping (Edgewater Antique Mall and Broadway Antique Market), small theaters (Steep Theatre, Raven Theater, Redtwist Theatre and City Lit Theater) and eclectic shopping. Along with classic establishments — Moody’s Pub, Zanzibar, Edgewater Beach Cafe and Anna Held Soda Fountain Cafe — there’s a plethora of newer places to explore.
5624 N. Broadway
Owner Patty Guerrero runs the no-frills, casual restaurant with her brother Joseph. Authentic family recipes are key at Edgewater Tacos. Even the salsa verde is made in-house. Order the hand-battered wild Alaskan cod tacos, premium carne asada and al pastor with a 24-hour marinade, along with homemade horchata.
As an alternative, for dine-in Mexican fare with an upscale ambiance and full bar service, head to Mas Alla del Sol, 5848 N. Broadway. Adam and Mirella Moreno’s original recipes include skirt steak, red snapper and margaritas made from fresh fruit.
Ras Dashen Ethiopian Restaurant
5846 N. Broadway
Chef Zenash Beyene received the 2018 Jean Banchet Award for best ethnic restaurant. Traditional Ethiopian meals are served on injera (spongy, sourdough flatbread bread made from teff grains) with bold and tangy sauces of the region named after the highest mountain peak in Ethiopia.
Alice & Friends’ Vegan Kitchen
5812 N. Broadway
The vegan entrees here are Asian-inspired. Order the Malaysian curry, Korean hot stone rice bowl, chow mein or royal pho.
If you’re looking for Thai, two restaurants in the neighborhood landed on the Michelin Bib Gourmand list:
• For upscale Thai, head to Herb, 5424 N. Broadway. Chef Patty Neumson offers reimagined offerings including a prix fix menu.
• Mom and pop Thai restaurant Jin Thai, 5458 N. Broadway, serves Thai classics. Owners Chai and Jin Roongseang plan to retire in their native Thailand in the near future, so get to this BYOB ASAP.
Burke’s Public House
5401 N. Broadway
Here you can grab a pint and bar food and maybe catch a game. Brothers Brendan and Kevin Costello run the friendly establishment, which has an excellent chili and turkey burger.
5959 N. Broadway
The 2018 Jean Banchet Award winner for best bar, this restaurant is my pick for a glass of wine (half-off on Wednesdays) and small plates. Every Thursday night, Income Tax offers a $38 three-course menu.
Edge of Sweetness Bakery
6034 N. Broadway
Owner Kate Merrill traded in her career as an intensive care nurse to follow her passions as a baker. Known for her cookies, cupcakes and cinnamon rolls, the coffee shop also serves lunch.
Lickity Split Frozen Custard
6056 N. Broadway
Owner Ken Anderson has re-created childhood dreams with this old-fashioned custard and sweets shop, which features delightful retro decor, candies, pastries and chocolates. Try the cake shake, a turtle sundae or a soda custard float.
1104 W. Granville
My go-to pick for fresh, jumbo (never frozen) chicken wings, served with a soy garlic sauce or a sweet, spicy Korean red pepper sauce.
Chicagoland Games: Dice Dojo
5550 N. Broadway
Co-owner J.P. Nery and Lexx Dunning’s store pays homage to board games and those who love to play them. The dedicated and helpful staff can guide you through the hundreds of board games. You’re also welcome to try out any game for free in the gaming room.