My Review of Portillo's in Chicago
For me, eating at Chick-fil-A a couple times a week is no big deal. I don’t get giddy when I have lunch at Cook-Out. Having a biscuit from Bojangles isn’t cause for a celebration. And having four different Waffle House locations in town isn’t something I share with all my family and friends.
However, put me in California and I’m asking the cab driver if he’ll take me to the nearest In-N-Out Burger.
When you live somewhere, you get used to having certain chain restaurants and don’t think they’re anything special. When you don’t have it where you live, you learn how much you appreciate it.
That’s the case for me with Portillo’s.
My only experience with this popular restaurant that specializes in Chicago-style food, such as hot dogs, sausages and sandwiches, was during our trip to Chicago.
It was the first time I’d ever been to a Portillo’s, even though they have locations throughout Illinois and have now expanded to different cities out West. I hope the next step is to begin expanding to the Southeast!
During our late-night dinner, we tried the Maxwell Street Polish and a hot dog, which was served “Chicago-style” with mustard, relish, onion, tomatoes, pickles and peppers on a poppy seed bun.
I wish Portillo’s would make it’s way to Virginia to share the goodness of Chicago-style hot dogs.
The Maxwell Street Polish was also delicious. It’s a grilled polish sausage topped with mustard and sauteed onions. There’s nothing complicated about it but the grilled sausage is excellent and they don’t over-complicate things with the mustard and onions. Basic. Yet still very good.
For the walk to the train station, I also ordered some vanilla custard. This is another thing I hope people in the Midwest don’t take for granted.
YOU CAN GET CUSTARD ANYTIME YOU WANT!
I’m so jealous of this. Actually, it’s hard enough to fit into my clothes right now so having access to custard would probably be the end of me.
Alas, I’ll dream about the custard and Chicago-style dogs at Portillo’s and cherish it when I get to return to Chicago again.
Learn more about our time in Chicago by checking out my Chicago travel page!