Food

Two New Casual Restaurants That Are Far Better Than Most

One’s for Thin-Crust Pizza, the Other’s for Very Substantial Sandwiches

By Sam Eichner
A450bed75d2942f439b5019dfd21be3412 PhotosVidalia and Pizzeria Bebu
Thank you for tuning into the live reading of A Tale of Two New Casual Restaurants, which is a tale of two new casual restaurants, Vidalia and Pizzeria Bebu, now open in Ravenswood and Lincoln Park, respectively.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of whatever the opposite of wisdom is, it was the Friday before the Super Bowl, it was... oh, hell.

Let’s just break these two down the old fashioned way, shall we?

Pedigree
Vidalia: The Dante’s Pizzeria team, plus a Haywood Tavern chef.
Pizzeria Bebu: Both the owner and chef logged some valuable hours at Nico Osteria.
Takeaway: These are not your average counter-service spots.

Space
V: Blue chairs, wooden tables, white accents, some exposed brick. It’s quaint.
PB: Long wooden booths, black ceilings, lots of bolted stainless steel. It’s industrial.
Takeaway: Ask the slideshow.

Specialty
V: Sandwiches. Specifically, of the dry-cured brisket, marinated steak and smoked pork shoulder variety.
PB: Not-quite-Neapolitan pizza boasting the “crispiest crust you’ve ever had,” topped with house-made meatballs, Italian sausage and pancetta.
Takeaway: Yum.

Extras
V: Chewy, crunchy, thin-crust pizza. Also, a Nutella panini.
PB: A 50-strong wine list and a rather delicious beet salad.
Takeaway: Beets. Who knew...

Super Bowl Utility
Right. Probably pretty obvious.

Sam Eichner likes literature, reality television and his twin cats equally. He has consistently been told he needs a shave since he started growing facial hair.

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