As an Ashkenazi Jew, a lot of things make my tummy hurt
As I sat on the toilet for the third time by 9:15am this morning hoping I would not get any important video calls, I moaned loudly, “WHYYYY???!!”
As an Ashkenazi Jew, a lot of things make my tummy hurt. I don’t have IBS but have had many stomach pain issues in the past which my doctor said was probably anxiety. Either way, I am not sure about my anxiety levels but my stomach usually doesn’t hurt as much anymore.
As I consider going out to eat again more, I am thinking about all the places that hurt my tummy in Chicago. Now, this does not mean you should avoid these places. Many of them taste amazing and I keep going back, but you know, just be prepared.
Chipotle (Gold Coast and Old Town)
Not unique to Chicago but really the impetus for writing this article. Maybe it is the sour cream glazed inside my tortilla that rips apart my b-hole, maybe it’s the gobs of cheese, the beans? Idk. It tastes so good and I inhale it but it still hurts. In order to keep this local, I will keep this to the Chipotles in Old Town and the Gold Coast. Shoutout to my go-to in the Gold Coast on State Street down the street from Zebra Lounge where you can find my favorite piano man, Zak Shapiro.
Deep Dish Pizza
Some people say it is touristy, but for me it is a staple and it always ends the same. All of them. Pequod’s, Giordano’s, Lou Malnati’s, Uno’s and Due’s – they all hurt after. It is the cheese, it is the acidity of the tomatoes, the butter in the crust. God, it hurts, but it tastes so good and I will not, I repeat, I will not stop eating Deep Dish Pizza in Chicago for take-outor any other pizza for that matter. Even leftover the next day when my stomach already hurts. Fun fact, Lou Malnati’s was the last restaurant I went to before the stay-at-home order was announced.
Not really a restaurant, but popcorn is one of my favorite foods and it is actually healthy sometimes. When I eat Garrett’s it is not. It is not really about eating Garrett’s Chicago Mix, it is about how much I eat, and I can eat a lot. Usually, I am actually eating that huge bag of GH Cretor’s Cheese & Caramel Mix from the Jewel (yes, I call it THE JEWEL) because who actually eats Garrett’s unless it is like a huge holiday party situation? RIP holiday parties and the big event 2020 btw. Either way, specialty popcorn good and I eat too much of it and it gives me a tummy ache.
All You Can Eat Sushi
Again, there is nothing wrong with sushi. When I sit down with a friend or two friends or whatever and start to order, I know what I am getting myself into. A spicy tuna, why not two, a bunch of this and that whatever. All you can eat sushi is a good time and my lack of self-control always makes it a bad time. I think the last one I ate at was Sushi Para M in Wicker Park near the Chabad of Bucktown. Honestly, I don’t know if either are there anymore.
Pho’s Thai Cuisine
If you do not know about Pho’s already, don’t Google it, don’t ask about it, don’t worry. It is a favorite of an old roommate of mine and we would get it a lot, like once a week and they give you free crab rangoon if you hit a minimum or order online or something, I’m not sure but I don’t need that either. I will say, it IS vegetarian friendly, which can be a plus. More importantly, they have some kind of spice level contest where they will put your face on their wall if you do a level 10. I don’t suggest trying. I never went above a level 3 and that was bad enough. Also, their toilet situation in the restaurant is a joke – I wish I had a picture to share in this post. I have two words for you, just like Mifflin, don’t go.
ChiTribe is a Jewish site after all, so I have to include a kosher restaurant. I love Taboun and Israeli food in general. Taboun Grill has such a convenient location and is always a welcome treat when I have it. It also hurts my tummy. IDK. That being said, Pita Inn also hurts my tummy. I think it is because I use too much spicy (zhough??), but you can’t stop me. The funniest thing is that I have tried to stick to just hummus and pita but there is too much fiber, so something weird is bound to happen later.
You could include pretty much anything in this list depending on the time of year. It might be donuts or ice cream or tacos, a lot of things give me a tummy ache. While this list is not exhaustive, it is what comes to the top of my mind. As more people start going back to restaurants in Chicago, I am sure they will experience some of the same woes that plague me today and many days of my life.