CLOSED: The Portage

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This intimate Portage Park eatery comes from Quay Tao, a former Tizi Melloul partner who lives nearby and identified a neighborhood need for a casual hangout with menu options that go beyond average bar food. Expect gastropub-style fare blending American classics with a touch of Southern flair. In addition to burgers, pulled pork sandwiches and po' boys, executive chef Jeff Brantley (also a Tizi Melloul vet) offers hearty entrees such as Southern fried chicken and grilled pork chops with creamed spinach and bacon. Desserts are as all-American as apple pie and ice cream sandwiches. There's a focus on local ingredients right down to the ultra-local fresh herbs, which are plucked from a rooftop garden.