Chicago's Best Secret Menu Items
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Chicago’s Best Secret Menu Items

The Dawson

Chicago’s Best Secret Menu Items

Hey you… yeah, you! Can you keep a secret?

Chicago may be well-known for its amazing restaurants and bars, but it just so happens that some of the best food in the city is actually being kept under wraps. Yes, from mysterious meatball subs to covert sushi rolls, the city’s restaurant scene is practically teeming with classified menu items you’ll have to see to believe.

And though we may be breaking all the rules in doing so, we’re here to clue you in.

Here are 11 of Chicago’s best off-menu items.

 

The Baller Roll

Secret Menu Items Chicago - Sunda

Photo Credit: Sunda

Sunda

Sure, River North’s Sunda offers plenty of damn-good rolls to cure your sushi cravings, but none compare to the Baller Roll. Though not much of a secret, this extravagant roll is strictly off-menu, and for good reason too. The Baller Roll features black truffle, Japanese Wagyu and wasabi creme making it one of the most extra sushi rolls on any menu in the city. Oh, and did I mention that this dish comes in at a whopping $75 per roll – talk about ballin’ out.

 

The Grand Daddy Patty Melt

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: III Forks

III Forks

Living up to its name, this secret sandwich from III Forks is the “granddaddy” of all burgers. Piled high with a 10oz Angus beef patty, saffron horseradish, caramelized onions, and, yes, a slab of pork belly, this greasy masterpiece used to be a secret item but was so popular that it was recently added to the official menu for $24. And, honestly, it’ll be worth it.

 

The Daily Drip

The Dawson

Photo Credit: Gage Hospitality Group

The Dawson

Shots are the name of the game at the Dawson, as their secret menu item is an ever-changing, seasonal shot of Old Forest 100 proof bourbon that drips through an elaborate teat tower. Since the bourbon is fused with a variety of botanicals and spirits, every sip of the drip lets you taste something totally unique since the ingredients form together over time. This secret shot’s current form is infused with Peloton de la Muerte mezcal & crème de cacao with peach, basil, and mint and can be had for just $6. Let me be the first to say hell. yes.

 

The Monster Smash

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: HBFC

Honey Butter Fried Chicken

If you thought Avondale’s Honey Butter Fried Chicken couldn’t get any better, then do I have news for you. As of March of 2017 this southern-inspired eatery is offering what is, and I quote, “basically the loaded mashed potatoes of your dreams.” Available for delivery only, The Monster Smash features HBFC’s signature potatoes topped with fried chicken, kimchi, spicy honey mayo, something known only as “crunchies” and a sprinkling of scallions. Um, yum?!

 

Meatball Sub

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: RPM Italian Instagram

RPM Italian

This upscale Italian chain gets down-and-dirty with their off-menu meatball sub. Served on a piece of RPM’s iconic garlic bread, this sandwich is topped with four enormous prime beef meatballs, slathered in cheese and marinara sauce, and then served with a side of spicy giardiniera.

 

The Speculoos Shake

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: Edzo’s Instagram

Edzo’s

Three words: Cookie. Butter. Milkshake.

Now, Edzo’s makes dozens of wildly delicious milkshakes to sip alongside its burgers and fries, but the secret-menu Speculoos Shake is truly in a league of its own. Try it topped with hot fudge and this diet-breaker is sure to become your next cheat day favorite.

 

The Humdinger

Secret Menu Item's Chicago

Photo Credit: Yelp

Donald’s Famous Hot Dogs

This city-wide chain has been serving up classic Chicago dogs for decades, but the off-menu item being sold at Donald’s Pilsen location is anything but traditional. In fact this secret dish doesn’t event start with a hot dog, but rather, a handmade tamale. Add to that a toasted roll and a shit-ton of chili cheese and you have yourself a Humdinger. And believe me when I say it. is. unreal.

 

The Poipu Beach Boogie Board

Three Dots and a Dash

The mixologists and Three Dots and a Dash are no stranger to secret menu cocktails. With an ever-changing menu and a penchant for seasonal creations, this River North tiki lounge is known for its ability to create and recreate most of its signature on the spot. The most commonly requested off-menu drink among guests? The Poipu Beach Boogie Board, a strong mix of rum, rye, lemon, pineapple, guava, grenadine, and maraschino.

 

The Roman-Style

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: M Burger

M Burger

M Burger has, by far, one of the largest secret menus in the whole of Chicagoland. Offering everything from an enormous grilled cheese to a salad-style creation, this burger bar and tap does off-menu the right way. Our favorite? The Roman-Style burger: a double bacon cheeseburger sandwiched in between TWO grilled-cheeses. Amazing.

 

The Elvis

Secret Menu Item's Chicago

Photo Credit: Thrillist

Potbelly

Okay, okay – so Potbelly’s secret menu isn’t necessarily “secret” anymore, but that doesn’t mean this Midwestern sandwich shop’s off-menu items are any less fantastic. What is perhaps Potbelly’s most creative secret sandwich, The Elvis comes just as the king would like it: smothered in peanut butter and topped with bananas and thick-cut bacon. I’ll take two, thanks.

 

The McGangbang

Secret Menu Items Chicago

Photo Credit: Twisted Spoke Twitter

Twisted Spoke

Chicago’s Twisted Spoke makes one of McDonald’s most iconic secret-menu items a reality with the McGangbang. Despite the, um, unsavory name, this insane sandwich is actually pretty damn good – featuring a fried chicken fillet served between two burger patties and topped with the works. Though it may take some nerves to order aloud, seeing this urban legend come to life is well worth it.

 

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As an avid NPR listener and self-described Snapchat addict, Jessica Hamrick is excited to showcase her love for all things media as an Editor at UrbanMatter. Her short-yet-illustrious academic career was dedicated to finding the intersections between writing and marketing and she’s definitely found it here. In her free time, Jessica can be found hanging out with her dog Indie, watching the Food Network or commiserating with fellow, unfortunate White Sox fans.

jhamrick@urbanmatter.com

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