Places We Like: Pleasant House Bakery

Pleasant House Bakery

964 W 31st St
Chicago, IL 60608
b/t Farrell St & Morgan St
Bridgeport

Saturday, Andrew and I had doctor’s appointments in the morning, and we didn’t eat breakfast just in case we had blood work done, so when we got back home, we were STARVING. Nothing by the doctor’s office really appealed to us, leading us to return to a favorite of ours: Pleasant House Bakery. Sadly, we found out when we walked in that they’re planning to move to a new location that is definitely out of walking distance for us, so it might have been the last time we actually visit this place in person. 😦

This is really sad, because this is the place we take people who are visiting Bridgeport — it’s just the best. Their menu is fairly simple, but it’s surprisingly good. The pies are amazing. My favorite is the chicken balti with the chutney sauce. And even though I know that I’m going to be full and not be able to finish everything, I always get a side of chips with it. In true British style, they offer vinegar for the chips as well. Andrew’s favorite is the mushroom and kale, which I can’t attest to because I don’t like mushrooms, but he generally has very good taste.

mushroom and kale pie
Andrew’s favorite – Mushroom and Kale

I’ve also had the steak and ale pie, which is very good if what you want is meat and potatoes. I wouldn’t call it bland, but it’s quite simple. Usually, I’m in the mood for a little bit of spice, which is why the chicken pie is perfect.

On this particular Saturday, though, I finally tried their fish and chips, and I have to say, it wasn’t my favorite. It’s not that it wasn’t good (though, Andrew didn’t like it very much), but their pies are SO much better. If we end up visiting again at any point in the future, I’m going to stick with my Chicken Balti pie.

chicken balti pie
Oh, Chicken Balti, how I missed you on Saturday

As for the atmosphere, it’s perfect. It’s BYOB with a liquor store right next door, so it’s a perfect place to grab a beer and hang out with friends for a bit. The inside is a bit small, but they have an outdoor seating area which is perfect for large groups on a day with mild weather. We’ll see what happens when they move locations, though.

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Places We Like: Bub City (Chicago)

Bub City
435 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60654

We went to Alton Brown Live: Eat Your Science on Saturday and needed a place to eat brunch and hang out beforehand, so we looked up some brunch places in the area and picked Bub City — Andrew was craving some chicken and waffles, and Bub City is a barbecue place, so we figured they’d do a good job with it.

Saturday was ridiculously windy, which we didn’t realize until after we left our place (of course), so our plan to drink a coffee and stroll down the river walk before brunch was changed to just heading straight to brunch and see if they’d take us early. We had 11:30 reservations, but the took us at a little before 11, no problem. Very nice of them, and we appreciated being able to get out of the wind.

Our waiter was incredibly nice and very helpful — he gave us recommendations for what were favorites on the brunch menu, and explained the Bloody Mary bar to us. It sounded amazing, and if you like Bloody Mary’s, I could imagine it being the big draw, but neither Andrew nor I enjoy Bloody Mary’s at all, so we went with a pomegranate margarita (me) and a sweet tea vodka drink (Andrew) to start off our breakfast.

As per usual, Andrew and I were planning to share our breakfasts, so we ordered the chicken and waffles and Brisket Benedict, which was a recommendation from the waiter. And let me tell you, both dishes were SO good. Putting brisket on biscuits over sausage gravy and under a fried egg is beyond genius and one of the best brunch foods I’ve ever had. The chicken and waffles were equally amazing (they serve it with butter, sausage gravy and a jalapeno honey on the side). I drenched one side of my portion with honey and then ate the other side with just butter, and both ways were delicious, though I really appreciated the honey and kind of want to find out how to make my own.

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Chicken and Waffles
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Almost-eaten Brisket Benedict

Of course, with the weather being so bad (and me being a little sick), our plans to walk around Chicago before our show at 2 PM were ruined a bit, so we were able to hang out and take our time. We got a second round of drinks. I got a Crispin Cider (yum!) and Andrew got the house beer, which is a lager. Andrew thought it was pretty good and though he’s not a huge fan of lagers, it was one of the more drinkable lagers he’s had in quite some time.

We had a good time listening to country music and watching sports, and definitely plan to make a trip back for their dinner menu, because if that brisket is any indication of their barbecue, their dinner menu is probably delicious.