An influx of college students and young professionals to the Printer’s Row neighborhood has ignited the life of its restaurant scene. While menus have diversified to cater to the neighborhood’s evolving population and dietary preferences, the restaurants drawing the most business tend to be those that have been around the longest. Here, we examine some of the most resilient restaurants in the Printer’s Row dining landscape.
Satisfying appetites since 1939, Blackie’s Chicago is a Printer’s Row institution if there ever was one. In fact, it’s the oldest family-owned bar and restaurant not only in Printer’s Row but in the entire South Loop. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and just about any cocktail that hasn’t been borne out of the hipster movement are served here. Blackie’s is a reliable place to get good comfort food and a stiff cocktail any time of year, but with the weather changing and months of cold on the horizon, it’s an especially good time to get out for a burger or some truffle mac ‘n cheese.
There are a few Hackney’s strewn about the city, but something about the Printer’s Row location makes it feel distinct. The menu features the same specialties you’ll find at any of the locations. The burgers, rye bread, and onion loaf taste the same. The onion rings rival the best found anywhere.
The difference can probably be chalked down to the restaurant’s vintage facade and the environment created by the staff-and-patron dynamic. Whatever it is, Hackney’s in Printer’s Row is worth checking out. The massive patties the restaurant’s name conjures up are just a three-minute walk from AMLI Lofts and AMLI 900.
Tacos, burritos, and burrito bowls are the mains to get at Flaco’s, but good Mexican food isn’t the only reason people visit. Right next to Hackney’s, Flaco’s offers rotating weekly specials and baked desserts, including vegan cupcakes, that are worth their weight in sugar.
Another Printer’s Row mainstay, Kasey’s Tavern, has been serving scrumptious sports bar favorites for more than 40 years. The local haunt is known for its friendly atmosphere, affordable prices, and excellent selection of bottled and draft beer. Since it’s only a five-minute walk from AMLI 900 and AMLI Lofts, residents don’t have to worry about being in shape to drive or paying for a cab home after an evening out. Word on the street is their beer flights are superb.
We’re not going to weigh in on any of the great pizza debates, but Lou Malnati’s certainly has a near-monopoly on the deep dish pizza that’s consumed in several Printer’s Row apartments. If you’re a fan of deep dish and aren’t already unwavering loyal to a single pizzeria, order a pie to see what Lou’s is all about. The State Street location is less than a five-minute walk from AMLI Lofts and AMLI 900.
Known for its falafel, turkey chili, salads, burgers, and grilled sandwiches, Standing Room Only is yet another Printer’s Row restaurant specializing in comfort food. It has a modern, fast-casual feel that sets it apart from some of the neighborhoods vintage pub-like restaurants, and prices and food that are hard to complain about.
Whether you live in a Printer’s Row apartment, are milling about the neighborhood for a festival, or just happen to be hungry while in the area, there’s bound to be a restaurant that suits your tastes and budget. Burgers, pizza, and other comfort grub abound, but health nuts can find solace in the knowledge that even Blackie’s and Hackney’s have more health conscious items on their menu.
What are your favorite Printer’s Row restaurants? Chime in with a comment below.
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