There are those who love the Super Bowl for the football and those who love it for the food. These five restaurant snacks (all available for takeout) will land you squarely in the latter camp.
1. When culinary instructor Ginna Haravon kept getting raves about her bacon-bourbon caramel corn from football-watching friends, she knew she was onto something. That’s why she launched her new company, Salted Caramel, in time for the Super Bowl. Available at Birchwood Kitchen (2211 W North Ave, 773-276-2100) and saltedcaramel.net. $12 for 8-ounce bag/$34 for 24 ounces.
2. Chef Sweet Charity Smith tested bourbon barrel wood with the various meats she serves at Brand BBQ Market. But it wasn’t until she used it for these dry-smoked, toffee-coated pecans that she had any success. 2824 W Armitage Ave (773-687-8148). $4.
3. Family plays a big part in Michigan Avenue’s the Purple Pig: The nuts used in these ridiculously addictive pork-fat-fried almonds with rosemary and garlic come by way of chef Jimmy Bannos’s brother-in-law’s California farm. 500 N Michigan Ave (312-464-1744). $4.
4. The Fifth’s barbecue-dusted potato gaufrettes are sprinkled with owner Jon Young’s barbecue rub and paired with a crumbled blue-cheese dip. (Get them at neighboring Kitsch’n River North on game day.) 600 W Chicago Ave (312-644-1500). $5.
5. Rootstock chef Remy Ayesh created her applewood-smoked bacon toffee specifically for beer lovers. (But wine drinkers shouldn’t panic—the stuff pairs with riesling as well.) 954 N California Ave (773-292-1616). $5.