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Dec 25, 2006 05:23 PM

Love Letter to Chicago

Anyone know where you can get:

Locally MADE cheese and wine?
Locally roasted beans, besides WF and Intelligencia?
Locally made tortillas
The best in locally made french pastry
Locally made chocolate, besides Vosges

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  1. There are quite a few wineries in the greater Chicago area and the rest of northern Illinois. You can find a complete list at

    There are a lot of shops making their own chocolates, too. One of the very best in the country is Belgian Chocolatier Piron in Evanston. They have their ingredients flown in from Belgium. Most days you can find Bob Piron in the back of the shop; you'll notice that his apron is clean first thing in the morning, and covered with chocolate by the end of the day. HIGHLY recommended.

    509-A Main Street
    Evanston, Illinois 60202
    Phone: 847-864-5504
    Fax: 847-864-5573

    1 Reply
    1. For locally roasted beans - Casteel Coffee in Evanston - IMO the best coffee in Chicago -

      1. Metropolis cafe in Rogers park is a roaster that is very good. Their red line roast for espresso is my favorite.

        1. Chocolate: Canady in the South Loop (also home-made gelati):

          Tortillas: See them being made at Maxwell Street Market, at one or two of the food booths (altho I don't think they're for sale separately, but are stuffed and eaten there on site).

          French Pastry: Bonjour Cafe (1550 E 55th St, Chicago, IL 60615,
          (773) 241-5300)

          1. El Milagro Tortilleria make the best locally made corn tortillas, flour tortillas, chips, etc. They have a plant as well as a taqueria in the Pilsen neighborhood. You can find them in just about every grocery store...they're occasionally still warm!

            4 Replies
            1. re: amoncada

              armoncada you are right on the money. I buy them, usually warm, at Caputos in Des Plaines. I can't walk buy them when they are warm and pick some up for friends. They are the best I've had. I go home and quickly make a cheese crisp or two with a touch of sour cream and some hot sauce. Best fast food there is.

              1. re: amoncada

                El Milagro also has a stall in the North Riverside mall food court. They don't sell the tortillas retail there but do sell them as part of some really good Mexican food court food.

                1. re: amoncada

                  A second on the El Milagro tortillas!

                  1. re: amoncada

                    Love those warm tortillas! Every day at the local A&G!