But how's their brunch?
That's what we wondered, too. So we ventured into some new dinner spots (and one revival of an old favorite) to find out.
Dodo at Dino’s When Kim Dalton ran Dodo on Damen Avenue (in the space that now houses Jam), she was the darling of the Ukrainian Village. Now, she’s revived her brunch spot on weekends only at Dino’s Morgan Inn, a dive tucked along a strip of meat-packing plants. The locale is both a boon and a bummer: There’s something spunky about the popped-up nature of Dalton’s enterprise, but there was also something too greasy about the cabbage-stuffed Japanese pancake (formerly a Dodo signature) and the hash of the day—a breakfast spin on Italian beef that paired Italian sausage with giardiniera and potatoes. It didn’t help that the food took forever to arrive, though coffee mugs were refilled with the zeal that only a true brunch veteran like Dalton could muster. 954 W Fulton Mkt (312-226-5300). Bus: 8, 20, 65. Brunch served 8am–3pm (Sat, Sun only). Average main course: $9.—Julia Kramer
M. Henrietta The hype about the hotcakes at M. Henry—the older and similarly charming sibling of this Edgewater spot—has been deafening for years. Believe it. They’re perfectly crisped on the outside, light and fluffy as clouds on the inside and overall substantial enough to be endlessly satisfying. M. Henrietta has devised various ways to bury these works of beauty (granola, blackberries, mascarpone cream) and many other menu items to distract from them (merely serviceable omelettes, unforgivable breakfast potatoes). Do not submit to these whims. Brunch served Tue–Fri 6:30am–3:30pm; Sat, Sun 8am–3pm (closed Mon). 1133 W Granville Ave (773-761-9700). El: Red to Granville. Bus: 36, 136, 147, 151. Average main course: $12.—Julia Kramer
Owen & Engine British brunch is all business, rooted in meat and potatoes and intended to both abolish a previous night of ales and set things right for the session to come. Owen & Engine takes this responsibility seriously, delivering a full English “fry up” with finesse, the egg properly runny, the tomato blistered, the beans bacony and the crispy-edged blood sausage as deep and rich as its name suggests. Coupled with a breakfast stout, you’re looking at brawny perfection. Those a little less hearty and hale can opt for the more genteel crumpets or scones, both made in-house, the latter served with clotted cream and just about as crumbly and buttery as they come. Brunch served 11am–3pm (Sat, Sun only). 2700 N Western Ave (773-235-2930). Bus: 49, 76. Average main course: $14.—Heather Shouse
Vincent It’s 11am on a sunny Sunday in Andersonville, and Vincent’s brunch crowd, if you can call it that, consists of a handful of straight couples and a family with kids in tow. Chalk it up to the gayborhood experiencing a mass post-Halloween party hangover, but the dearth of diners is more likely due to few people knowing the Dutch restaurant even offers brunch. That should all change once word gets out about the uitsmijter, a decadent layering of thick bacon, melty gouda and two eggs on brioche. For now, enjoy the silence with a Hollander—a Bloody Mary that may lack spice but offers an enormous helping of herring, skewered with a pickle—and the delicately fried oysters that burst with saltwater with every bite. The oysters sit on underseasoned, somewhat runny scrambled eggs—an underwhelming note in an otherwise overwhelmingly delicious meal. Brunch served 10:30am-2:30pm (Sundays only). 1475 W Balmoral Ave (773-334-7168). El: Red to Berwyn. Bus: 22, 36, 92. Average main course: $12.