By Elizabeth SanFilippo
German food is about a lot more than bratwursts and sauerkraut. In fact, don’t be surprised to find a variety of seafood options as well as soups and stews chock full of vegetables. Still, Germans clearly love their meat, especially pork and sausages. In restaurants throughout the city, grab a hefty stein of beer along with traditional meaty German dishes that are sure to fill you up. And don’t forget that side of mustard.
2523 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60614
Austria may be on the border of Germany but the countries share a lot of the same traditions when it comes to cuisine. At the same time, there’s nothing like this bakery in Chicago. Grab tasty apple strudels with a delicious hot chocolate for breakfast (until 2 p.m.) or dessert, or opt for the sizeable signature sandwiches (and don’t forget to ask for mustard). The schnitzel sandwich is always worth a stop for its deep fried chicken on the bakery’s own farmer’s rye bread. Prices are reasonable too, and the Austrian Bakery offers a lunch special for $6.99 which includes a sandwich, drink and chips (Monday through Friday only).
7650 W Irving Park Road
Norridge, IL 60706
With its German-American cuisine and Bavarian beers, there’s something here to satisfy everyone’s appetite, even if the menu is a bit shorter than other German establishments in the area (gluten-free options are also available). The dishes, such as its weinerschnitzel with a zesty Gypsy sauce, are all based on family recipes made evident with every bite. Dinner entrees run from $15.95 to $23.95, while during lunch you can grab many of the same menu items for under $10.
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Glunz Bavarian Haus
4128 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60618
The story of Glunz Bavarian Haus starts shortly after the Great Chicago Fire when Louis Glunz moved to the city from Germany. He worked his way up to eventually create a beer and wine company, along with a tavern next door. Today the restaurant is still run by the Glunz family, serving traditional family recipe dishes as well as the German and Austrian beers. Be sure to grab the chicken schnitzel for just $15.95.
2119 W Irving Park Road
Chicago, IL 60618
Easily one of the most popular and delicious of German restaurants in Chicago, Laschet’s Inn has actually only been serving food since 2000, even though the Inn has roots as far back as the 70s. Today, Laschet’s serves traditional German grub, such as potato pancakes and papikrash, as well as some more American eats, such as burgers. When you step into Laschet’s, it’ll feel like you’re stepping into Germany with all sorts of wonderful knick-knacks and decor.
3454 W Addison St
Chicago, IL 60618
It’s always Oktoberfest in this traditional restaurant and lounge in Avondale. With three dining rooms and one bar, there’s plenty of room to bring family and friends to chow down on such delicious traditional eats as goulash (both as a soup and as a meat entree) and sausage platters. Don’t pass up the bratwurst either because it’s unlike any other sausage in this town — and as an appetizer, it’s only $5.50. Be sure to go to Mirabell’s website before heading in to take advantage of the 50 percent off a second entree deal.
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Elizabeth SanFilippo is a freelance writer, who enjoys trying new foods from all over the world. But her favorite city for culinary treats will always be Chicago. When not writing about food, she’s scribbling novels, and TV show reviews and recaps. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.