As you may or may not know, Empanada Boy is in the process of converting to Judaism. We’re taking a class together where we study the basic principles and practices of the religion. While we were gone for Thanksgiving we missed a class where a panel of converts spoke about the actual stages of conversion. Feeling this was important, EB and I decided to try to meet with one of the panelists to discuss the issues one-on-one. How does this relate to food, you ask? Here’s how: we met with Ice Creamista (who, incidentally, used to manage the Sweet Occasions near our house) at the fabulous Glenn’s Diner to talk about the process of becoming Jewish.
Located just East of the Montrose Brown Line station, Glenn’s Diner claims to serve “the best food in the world.” While it’s tough for me to go out on a limb at age 25 and assert the truth of that claim, I can definitely get behind it’s spirit. Glenn’s serves fantastic, simple food, made with excellent ingredients. And the casual cafe atmosphere makes it all the more enjoyable. The place was packed on the snowy Tuesday night we visited. Glenn’s is open for breakfast (served all day), lunch and dinner. But it is most notably a fish and seafood house. A chalkboard menu adorns both side walls listing the numerous fish specials of the day. Glenn’s also offers all-you-can-eat Alaskan King Crab legs and baby back ribs on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, respectively. That’s in addition to a lenthy menu of burgers, sandwiches, meats and chowders. Glenn’s First Catch Special— 1/b fresh fish, roasted red potatoes, salad and soup is a steal at $11.95.
EB and Ice Creamista wanted to try more pricey items, but I kept things inexpensive by ordering the Lake Perch Po’ Boy. Made with small, battered and fried lake perch filets and house made tartar sauce, this sandwich on a crusty bun really hit the spot. Fittingly, as it was the first night of Hannukah, the sandwich came with the option of a side of potato pancake. EB continued the theme when he ordered the potato pancake encrusted whitefish pictured here. The crispy potato shell gave way to succulent, tender fish. Apple sauce and sour cream came on the side. (Is Glenn a Jew too, we wondered?) Ice Creamista tried the grilled barramundi, which came with a roasted red potatoes and a pretty little clump of green beans.
All in all, we had a fantastic time at Glenn’s. It was a little loud for discussion, but EB and I loved meeting Ice Creamista. She set our minds at ease about the conversion process and didn’t even mind me taking pictures of her food. We spent more per person than the usual Mango Lassie price range, but EB and I could easily go back and spend less than $10 a person on an equally delicious meal. I think we’ll also try going back for breakfast sometime. As we left the restaurant, I noticed that the entire wall behind the bar is decorated with cereal boxes. And a look at the menu reveals cereal is indeed one of the breakfast options. I like the cereal for decoration, but I think the corned beef hash and eggs would make the trip worthwhile.
1820 W. Montrose Ave.
Chicago, IL 60613