Travel northwest on Milwaukee Avenue to Oakley Street and find Irazu, the city’s predominant Costa Rican eatery. Settle in for signature menu items Palmito salad, yuca fries and fried plantains. For a burst of flavor, ask the server to add their sautéed hot peppers to your dish. Irazu is BYOB, but consider ordering one of their trademark oatmeal shakes. Though they’re open year round thanks to their recent addition of an enclosed outdoor seating area (heated in the winter), plan ahead as they get packed nightly. It’s definitely worth the wait, though.
Irazu, 1865 North Milwaukee, (773)252-5687, irazuchicago.com
Best of Chicago 2012