Upper Crust

| January 30, 2009 | 3 Comments

By: Jen Khatchatrian

Rethink your perception of pizza and expand your mind (and options) at Crust in Wicker Park. Being the Midwest’s first certified organic restaurant one would think there is a lot of pressure. Nothing is farther from the truth (at least from an outsider’s perspective) when you spend time at Crust. The experience is actually very down to earth, relaxing and to our surprise- extremely kid friendly from start to finish.

As we walked from down the block toward the restuarant I commented that someone was enjoying a fire as my nose lifted and I smiled. Smelled heavenly! You can imagine my delight when we walked into Crust and found the savory, comforting aroma was generated right from our destination. The entire package from the decor to the staff seemed to be exactly what we were looking for- comfort food that we could believe in.

Once at our table, the boys received their special kids pizza quicker than you could pronounce Flammkuchen (otherwise known as the pizza we enjoyed with bacon, bechamel, carmelized onions, caraway seeds and parmigiano-reggiano)! Truthfully, I have never seen my children devour (and I truly mean devour) every last bite. The winter salad full of beets, fennel, red onion and orange was full of such clean and satisfying flavors that it cemented its place as our fast favorite. Committed to providing fresh, seasonal food, Crust supports many local organic food providers including a personal favorite Seedling from the Green City Market. Their menu both for food and spirits really reflect this commitment and came as a breath of fresh air for a struggling localvore such as myself! PS. For vegetarians, they also substitute tempeh for any meat products so you are sure not to miss out on any of these bold flavor combinations.

Our family finished our meal as we have never before- digging our forks into a warm apple tart in the center of the table. Due to my son’s food allergies we have been prohibited from eating most desserts at restaurants so this was beyond a special treat for all of us. And did it hit the spot… Perfect!

You know a restaurant is a fast favorite when you are already planning your next meal at your first meal! Definitely starting with some prosciutto antipasti, calzone and pulled pork sandwich. (Don’t tell anyone but I stared at my neighbor’s plate for a while!) Since Crust has a full service bar where they make their own organic infused vodkas, I would highly recommend a dinner out with friends sans children when you can. The bar looked really fun. Afterwards, we noticed that every other table had a child or several children. I credit the accommodating staff, delectable food and the astoundingly cost effective price point for not only an organic meal but any meal in the city. And I am a tough critic!

Sidebar- the neighborhood has really grown in the area so make time to do some shopping if you can. Crust is located at 2056 W. Division and can be reached at 773-235-5511. You can also order online at www.crustchicago.com. Although relatively new, Crust is sure to dominate the food scene as the new elite.

This is an original Chicagonista.com article.

Jen Khatchatrian is co-editor of Chicagonista and the blogger aka The EcoChic Organizer. Jen also contributes bi- weekly to Chicago Moms Blog.

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Category: Eats & Sips

About the Author ()

Head Chicagonista, Co-host of the Chicagonista LIVE! show, Lead blogger for TheChicagoMoms.com, and Co-Founder of Women Driving Excellence. MJ is also the annual host of SocialRevUp - Brands & Bloggers Summit (#bbsummit) attended by about 200 professional high-profile bloggers nationwide. Follow MJ on Twitter: @mjtam

Comments (3)

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  1. Kristen says:

    Yes! We’ve gone with and without our son, and it’s always great. Also love their organic beer selection and wish I could make pizzas that good at home. Delish!

  2. Sandy Paine says:

    Another great recommendation! You guys have done an awesome job in bringing out these places I’ve never known. Thanks!

  3. Erin says:

    Oh, this sounds lovely! We will definitely have to make a trip of checking this out… my stomach is growling thinking about it.

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