Torta Reform

Beer Ice Cream and Churros With Rick Bayless

After your exhausting (but successful) three-day campaign to complete your summer masterpiece (by which we mean your summer), we admire you for even showing up to work today.

In fact, you deserve a reward. Go ahead—take the rest of the afternoon off.

If anyone asks, we'll tell them it's just a coincidence that Xoco, Rick Bayless's long-awaited den of Mexican chocolate, smoked meat and the occasional shot of tequila ice cream, opens today.

It's on the same corner as Frontera/Topolobampo, but here you line up to order. Any resemblance to that other Mexican lunchtime staple, Chipotle, is entirely coincidental—let's just say a wood-burning oven drastically changes the whole black or pinto, corn or flour lunch debate.

Now, it's about being torn between tortas like the Pepito (braised short ribs, caramelized onion, pickled jalapeños) and the Ahogada (shredded pork, tomato broth, arbol chile sauce). Then, of course, there's the whole Mexican beer or Mexican beer ice cream (with Negra Modelo) dilemma…

But if Topolobampo is the well-heeled brother to Frontera Grill, you'll come to think of Xoco as the headstrong hermanita (apropos, since Xoco is slang for little sister), out to prove something to the boys. If that means she has to crush every cocoa bean by hand for your spicy Aztec hot chocolate or your cinnamon-sugared churro, she's going to do it.

We suggest you let her.


449 N Clark St
(at Illinois St)
Chicago, IL, 60610

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