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in Wicker Park or Damen on the Blue line

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Birchwood Kitchen

View Map2211 W. North Ave., Chicago
Tel: (773) 276-2100
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Editorial Review of Birchwood Kitchen

North, Milwaukee and Damen offers nearly any variety and level of dining. Whatís left to do but make a hybrid of upscale quality with take-out convenience? Birchwood Kitchen has made a congenial sandwich parlor for those who want something nice, but not slow.

While a number of expected sandwiches make their appearance on the menu, Birchwood offers a few tasty curveballs. On the cold side, offerings vary from a speck (prosciutto) sandwich with celery root cream and truffle oil for $8.75, to a goat cheese sandwich stuffed full of bright piles of beets, with walnut pesto and citrus arugula rounding out the flavor for $8.25. The most surprising might be the vegetable sandwich Ė its spiced cashew butter, carrots, pickled red onion and sprouts can win over even the staunchest meatatarian. On the hot side, the roast beef and blue cheese ($8.50) has big caramelized onion chunks to complete the savory taste bud attack, and the grilled gruyere has its cave-aged namesake matched with caramelized onions and Dijon mustard for $6.75.

A few salads are available for those watching the carbs, and a bakery case has cookies, lemon bars, and other delights for those who arenít. For the weekend crowd, thereís also a small brunch menu, with quiche, smoked salmon, croquet madame, and other items available for $8-12. And if youíre not of the teetotaler variety, youíll be glad to know you can pair your sandwich with the appropriate beer of your choice Ė itís BYOB, and thereís liquor store just a few steps away.

Average cost: <$10

Centerstage Reviewer: Dan Morgridge

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10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday-Sunday

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chicago, metromix