Formerly: Head down the metal staircase that leads to Wally & Agador's Gourmet Cafe and you'll find fresh, scrumptious sandwiches, salads and desserts on the menu. Disco tunes and Pet Shop Boys songs fill the air, while framed photos and circular mirrors cover bright red walls at the hip and cheery basement cafe in Boystown.
Michael Lachowicz (chef of Restaurant Michael in Winnetka) provides gourmet take-away items, including salads and desserts. Order at the counter, and you'll get friendly, attentive service. Then get comfy in one of the silver chairs at a table topped with fresh iris flowers. A few minutes later someone will bring your order. A Just Jack sandwich ($8) satisfies a growling tummy: With brown sugar-roasted organic turkey breast layers topped with tomato petals, lettuce and Monterey jack cheese on yummy toasted brioche bread, it is flavorsome and filling without making you feel overly stuffed. Potato salad is also tasty but super-drenched in mayonnaise. Vanilla panna cotta ($2.50) is a rich, creamy, luscious and lovely way to end a meal.
Also on the menu are two sandwiches named after Lachowicz's two cute dogs, Wally and Agador (who are pictured on stickers affixed to takeout bags and containers): the Wally, which is peanut butter, marshmallow fluff and sliced bananas on a warm batter-dipped croissant, and the Agador, a hot batter-dipped croissant filled with Nutella, marshmallow fluff and sliced bananas. Other sandwiches include the Divine Miss M., which is grilled beef tenderloin topped with a Roquefort cheese spread and caramelized onions, and the Judy Garland, a sandwich with grilled portabella mushrooms, Robiola cheese and sliced artichoke hearts with a green and black olive spread.
Average cost: <$10
Centerstage Reviewer: Mary Susan Littlepage