I was born in the Midwest. I grew up in the Midwest. I have lived my entire life in the Midwest. There’s a better chance than not that I never leave the Midwest for any extended permanent period of time. And while this is all good and great, it’s also a problem, because I f*cking love Southern food. I don’t know if it’s the excessive butter, fried stuff, or drawl I expect from anyone who ever serves me shrimp and grits, but the feeling is real.
Big Jones is the kind of Southern cuisine in Chicago worth getting down with. Before you go all pitchfork mob comparing Big Jones to Willie Mae’s Scotch House in New Orleans or Martha Lou's Kitchen in Charleston, stop now, because we aren’t here to play that game. We are here to take Big Jones for what it is - rather tasty Southern cuisine, right here in our own Andersonville backyard.
The fried chicken is delicious, shrimp and grits are a staple on the menu, and brunch will knock you off your feet - literally, the day will be over. Homemade baked goods like popovers, cornbread muffins, and Sally Lunn buns (an old English turned southern version of a sweet brioche) are irresistible with a heavy dose of fruit preserves. You’ll be half tapped out before a big ol’ plate of gumbo or corn griddle cakes are set in front of your face.
Big Jones feels like a lot of the other restaurants in Andersonville, but with a Southern twist. There’s something about this stretch of Clark that makes us like to casually hang, and Big Jones is no different. Come for a slow moving meal that’s laid back, but still has the makings of a homegrown, properly run place. It’s great for catching up with friends, low-key dinner with the ‘rents, or even an established date. Post up on the small enclosed patio when you can, and order a sweet tea while you further imagine the Southern vibes.
A brunch necessity. Biscuits, popovers, Sally Lunn buns, cornbread muffins, and spoonbread. You order each of them individually, so start with one or two depending on how many people you have. Served with butter and homemade preserves, they are all Delicious, with a capital D.
Hog's head pâté, made with brandy and peppercorns, plus served with bourbon-brown sugar mustard and homemade rye bread. It’s a real delicacy in the world of charcuterie, and we encourage you to give it a try. That said, all of the charcuterie is good.
Some of the best fried chicken in town. A cornmeal dredge that’s salty and crispy, with a piping hot and juicy inside. Get the half chicken mix of white and dark meat.
A solid cheeseburger with a a Southern twist - pimento cheese. You'll like it.
Shrimp and buttery grits. What more do you want?
Fried catfish with grits, hushpuppies, greens, and oyster gravy. We are big fans of this fried, crispy bottom feeder.
You need some.