Bus: 2 Hyde Park Express, 15 Jeffery Local, 28 Stony Island, 55 Garfield, 171 U. of C(773) 667-0647 valoisrestaurant.com41.799557 -87.587520 1518 E 53rd St (between Harper and Lake Park Aves) Hyde Park, Chicago
Breakfast, lunch, dinnerAverage main course: $7
Quick thinking is the key to success at this classic cafeteria: once the line reaches the counter, you have only a few seconds to place your order, pick a side, order a drink and pay. For breakfast, we like the generous stack of French toast with a side of poached eggs. For lunch, it’s the baked chicken, so sumptuous that the meat falls off the bone. There’s always the question of whether to eat the sweet, cakey biscuits with your meal or save them for dessert; either way, make your choice the first time around. Otherwise, it’s back to the line.