Bel 50

Fat Chance

Waffle Sandwiches in River North

A1320409a7a8febea0f9845c52c921cbbebd66b64 PhotosBel 50
Adieu, Wonder Bread, adieu.

We’ll never again see your soft white suppleness again. So we suppose this is as good a time as any to tell you...

You’ve been replaced by a Belgian waffle. And yes, we plan to stick our lunch meat into it.

Meet Bel 50, a sandwich shop that—just because it could—replaced all bread with waffles, open as of today in River North.

True, these are not the Belgian waffles you’d find at a roadside stand in Brussels. They’ve been fully reengineered from the ground up. Better, stronger... yeastier. Think rustic bread in waffle form.

Despite this feat of culinary innovation, inside this place it’s a humble Euro affair. There’s that chalkboard menu over the spot where you order. There are communal tables with orange tufted cubes to park yourself at.

While you wait, please enjoy the Amsterdam-inspired graffiti art and strong Belgian tripel ale to go with it.

Then the sandwiches arrive. At first, they’re strange. Each folded in one delicious waffle. Then familiar. A tangy Reuben. A BLT. Pulled pork. Short ribs with horseradish crème fraîche. Simple. Ingenious. Simply put: it’s quite possibly the future of sandwiches.

But yes, we’re still just talking about waffles. That means breakfast waffle sandwiches. Banana-Nutella. Strawberries and cream cheese. Virginia baked ham. Each served all day.

In case you’re on Amsterdam time.

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