Friday, July 5, 2013


3267 S. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60608
Nana on UrbanspoonNana Organic on Foodio54
A Quick Word:
I consider this to be a hidden gem in Chicago!  Located in the Bridgeport area, Nana puts a creative spin on both breakfast and lunch favorites.  I really recommend coming to this restaurant for brunch on weekends... easily one of the best places in the city.  There are a couple reasons why it didn't get a perfect rating... First of all, the prices are a little on the higher end, especially for brunch.  Also, whenever there was a potato on the dish, I just wasn't impressed.  The potatoes were always bland and luckily saved by some kind of accompanying gravy or toppings.

UPDATE 2013:
I am still in love with this brunch restaurant.  Recently, my friends and I went for a late brunch at Nana.  The food was absolutely incredible (see below for updated dishes).  I thought I was going to increase their rating to perfect... but this time, the service was not so great.  After being seated immediately, our food order was misplaced and the server just didn't come back and check on our table frequently enough to refill waters, update us on our food order, or anything.  Honestly, it took about 45 minutes to receive any food.  They tried to make it right by giving us our beignets for free.  Great attempt, but sometimes good service is all we ask for.  I understand there was a mistake in the system, so maybe my next visit will elevate Nana to a perfect rating.

What I Ate:

Fried Chicken and Waffles (Updated 2013)

Absolutely incredible.  This brunch special was probably some of the best breakfast I have had in a while.  It consisted of an oat & cornmeal waffle topped by a generous helping of fried cajun chicken tenders and smothered in a pork sausage gravy.  I petite arugula salad lightly tossed in a lemon vinaigrette accompanied the meal as well as two eggs over easy.  The waffle was a perfect.  It had that nutty flavor and was soft in the middle with a nice crunch on the outside.  The cajun chicken tenders reminded me of fried chicken that was coated in a chorizo crust.  It had plenty of spices, yet was not overwhelming.  And, to make it even better, a pork sausage gravy added even more richness to the meal.  It was so filling.  The best bite is to get a little waffle, a little chicken, dip  it in both runny yolk and gravy and enjoy.  Follow it with some salad otherwise a heart attack may happen. I am glad the gave the small salad because it helped cut some of the unhealthy aspect of the dish.  I would order this every weekend if I knew my cholesterol wouldn't increase.  A must try if they still offer the dish.

Cinnamon Roll Beignets (Updated 2013)

Another one of their "specials of the day."  These beignets were simple.  Fried dough with a little cinnamon baked inside, topped with a rum icing, toasted pecans, and whipped cream.  The beignets were freshly fried and came out piping hot.  They were a little on the dense side for a beignet, but still tasted delicious.  The rum icing was addicting and of course toasted pecans just make everything better.  Unfortunately, it was a little on the not-so-sweet side so I ended up adding a little sugar to the icing.  I think they needed to dust it with powdered sugar.  Just a suggestion!


Huevos Rancheros

An incredible spin on the classic huevos rancheros. A pile of caramelized onions, peppers, refried beans, and soyrizo was sitting on two crispy tortillas. It was topped with two over easy eggs, a queso fresco, poblano cream, and guac. My favorite part was definitely the poblano cream. Nice peppery flavor complementing nice with all the other Mexican ingredients on the plate. Definitely loved the crispy tortillas as opposed to the normal corn tortillas. Glad I was able to share today!

Biscuits and Duck Gravy

It may sounds like an interesting combination... and it is, but each of the components were delicious!  The smoked cheddar biscuits are home made and covered with the gravy.  It is topped off with fresh market vegetables and two eggs (I chose to get over easy).  Popping the yolk and spreading it throughout added even more richness to the gravy.  I enjoyed every bite... Unfortunately, it is a little pricey for breakfast food.

Lemon Pound Cake French Toast

Definitely made for a sweet tooth! The name describes it... Literally lemon pound cake that was buttered and put on the grill to give it a nice crust! I absolutely loved this dish which came with pear-huckleberry jam, pear mousse, and slices of a red navel orange. It's definitely sweet so we had to take home more than half of it! It's gonna make a great dinner!

Veggie Torta

I thought I has a favorite veggie sandwich but then I has this... This veggie torta starts out with a brioche bun and is filled with soyrizo, guacamole, grilled portabella mushrooms, chile de arbol aioli, raw milk jack cheese, and a little sour cream. It was served with a jalapeño slaw and garlic mashed potatoes with a mushroom vegetarian gravy! Where to start... The bread was fresh and thick enough to support all the juices from inside the sandwich. Each layer contributed to the complexity and honestly the guacamole just put it over the top. The slaw was vinegar based (my favorite) and had a few chunks of jalapeño that I added to my torta. And the potatoes had one of the better gravies I've eaten in a while. Delicious and I can't wait to go back!

Grilled Laughing Bird Shrimp and Fried Oyster Po' Boy

This is simply delicious! It's a huge po' boy piled high with fried oysters, grilled shrimp, a homemade giardiniera, and a Cajun mayo! The oysters were fresh and crispy and that giardiniera... I could eat it by itself! and however, the duck fat fried potatoes were a little disappointing.. All in all, it was a little pricy but well worth it!

The DOs/DON'Ts:
- Make sure to pay for parking... every time I go to the restaurant someone has a ticket on their dashboard waiting for them to finish breakfast
- Do come when you have time to spare... this place has recently become more popular and weekends especially a 10 to 20 minute wait is possible.

- Don't miss out on their amazing creations or spins on the classics... try something new!  you will most likely enjoy it!

How far would I walk for this food?

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