Picture a sloppy joe that is not quite so sloppy - meaning not drowning in sauce, yet still delectably good - constructed with mounds of loose ground beef, and you have the signature Original Maid-Rite sandwich. This Iowa tradition just came to Lincoln Park and families are sure to flock to the diner-style eatery that is as kid-friendly as it is delicious.
The Original Maid-Rite sandwich has been around for almost 90 years and today there are various options to please all taste buds. You could go for the original-tasty and simple-but why not get adventurous? Try the Blue-Rite, which incorporates small chunks of blue cheese into the classic recipe. Or the Rare Bit, the same fresh ground beef but served open-faced with white cheddar cheese sauce on marble rye bread.
Not a beef lover? Not a problem. Maid-Rite is also known for its pulled pork sandwich. Wraps are also available, as is a nice selection of salads. For a side, choose the mouth-watering smoked baked beans or homemade buttermilk onion rings, perfectly battered and ready for dipping.
Save room for a generous slice of freshly baked pie, displayed like the old-school diners do in tempting, circular glass pie holders. Flavors change daily, but among the favorites are chocolate, peanut butter, apple, strawberry and rhubarb.
And the little ones? They'll feel right at home among the scads of other kids, perhaps chatting up tykes at the next table as my girls did. Feel free to dangle a reward for good behavior at the end of the meal in the form of an ice cream cup, float or malt-like everything else here, the desserts are made right.
Linda made it a goal to try out every kid-friendly venue in Chicago, which she chronicles in her Chicago Parent Good-to-Go column.
See more of Linda's stories here.