Brisket sandwiches popular at Local Root

Local Root

April 3, 2013 9:39:25 AM PDT
Hundreds, if not thousands, of sandwich combinations can be found in Chicago, but every now and then, ABC7 Chicago's Hungry Hound discovers one worth ordering again.

It's part of his occasional series, "Anatomy of a Sandwich."

Now that Passover is over, a lot of people might be tired of brisket,but there's a little restaurant in Streeterville, where they focus on all things locally-sourced and homemade, and they've created a brisket sandwich worth analyzing.

Brisket is one of those things that takes time to make. At Local Root, slow food is the mantra. So, it's no surprise to learn their brisket sandwich is labor-intensive. In addition to the slow-roasted meat, there's a goat cheese spread with red wine, plus pickled fennel and homemade pickles, all on a freshly-baked and toasted brioche bun.

"Everything that we do starts with sourcing. And then we see how much we can do in-house. So our brisket is 100 percent grass-fed from Wisconsin, just as close as we can get it," said chef and co-owner Isaac Welivér.

First, it's seared in a hot pan on all sides, then a mirepoix of celery, carrots and onions, along with jalapeno and fresh thyme are added to the pan. It's covered and roasted for hours. While it's roasting, the freshly-baked buns are removed from the oven and the spread is made: illinois goat cheese, mayo and lemon juice, along with chopped dill and some midwestern cabernet franc.

"On this, we do a burgundy chevre. We have wine as an element of the braising liquid, now we take and add that to the topping on top," Welivér said.

The buns are toasted, then the brisket is sliced and chopped. The spread is slathered on one side, while the chopped brisket is mounded on the other. A handful of pickled fennel and other pickles are added, counteracting the richness of the spread and the buttery bun. Served with some hand-cut fries and a local soda, it's a hard combo to beat.

"The sandwich is definitely one of our most popular sandwiches, only second to our eggplant brioche," he said.

The brisket sandwich is always on the menu. The handcut fries are extra, by the way.

Local Root
601 N. McClurg Ct.
(312) 643-1145