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Big Star


Wicker Park

$$$$Perfect For:Big GroupsBirthdaysDay DrinkingDogsDrinking Good CocktailsEating At The BarOutdoor/Patio SituationPeople WatchingSee And Be Seen


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Whether you love it or hate it, there’s no denying Big Star is an anchor tenant of the Wicker Park dining scene. Here at The Infatuation Chicago, however, we’re split on what the Big Star consensus should be. So we’ve decided to do this review rap battle style, dishing out both the love (Sam) and the hate (Claire).

Point-Counterpoint: Big Star

Point, Sam: The tacos are good, and good tacos are better than most other things.

Counterpoint, Claire: If you consider dry Al Pastor and overly fishy fish tacos “good,” then we have some bigger issues to discuss here at The Infatuation.

Point, Sam: Excellent Guacamole.

Counterpoint, Claire: No comeback - it’s pretty good. I’d also back you up on the Queso Fundido.

Point, Sam: There’s not much I’d rather do on a beautiful summer day than post up at Big Star to eat and drink as many tacos and margaritas/beers as my body can handle.

Counterpoint, Claire: I can think of at least 17 things I’d rather be doing on a beautiful summer day that doesn’t include sacrificing two hours of wait time, a sunburn, and potentially my first born for the privilege to sit in the equivalent of a folding chair while eating mediocre (at best) tacos.

Point, Sam: Day drinking at Big Star is the best kind of drinking. 60 beers is my goal.

Counterpoint, Claire: Sounds like we’re just making statements about drinking now. Margaritas make me silly. Champagne drunk is the worst kind of hangover. Big Star still sucks. Also, can we address the Schlitz on the menu? Nobody likes Schlitz. Nobody.

Point, Sam: Some of the best people watching in Chicago, and I get a huge kick out of watching/making fun of people I don’t know. If you think I’m staring at you it’s because I probably am.

Counterpoint, Claire: It’s like watching a couple fight. It’s fun to eye up from afar, but I don’t actually want to be a part of what’s happening.

Point, Sam: Walking tacos - cheese and meat in a bag of Fritos chips. What’s not to like?

Counterpoint, Claire: Don’t let the cover fool you, which, okay, is pretty cool. But if you put ground beef, Taco Bell fire sauce, and shredded cheese in a Fritos bag, I’m not sure you could tell the difference.

Point, Sam: Claire probably hates the cash only policy. Can’t say I disagree.

Counterpoint, Claire: We can send Leo to outer space and order pizza by drone, but Big Star can only accept dollar bills. This is more confusing than it is off-putting. Can I Venmo them instead?

Point, Sam: A good Big Star hang on the weekend makes for a perfect Chicago summer day.

Counterpoint, Claire: Chicago summer is a beautiful yet fleeting precious moment. Don’t waste it on a mediocre establishment like this.

Food Rundown

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Chips & Salsa with Guacamole

Delicious guacamole. Always have to remind myself to stop eating this stuff.

Queso Fundido

You’re going to want to graze on a lot of things, so get this melted queso with poblano peppers and chorizo involved too.

Taco de Zanahorias

Mole spiced carrots with chipotle date yogurt, pumpkin and sesame seeds, and crushed almonds. It sounds really interesting but isn’t that great. Skip it. Meat wins, again.
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Taco Al Pastor

Not the best al pastor in the world, but it’s solid. Grilled pineapple is a nice touch.

Taco De Picadillo

Seared ground beef taco with chipotle-tomato salsa, raisins, onion, queso fresco, and toasted peanuts. A unique mix of taco ingredients that’s different and good.
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Taco De Pescado

A large crispy piece of battered tilapia with cabbage, red onion, and chipotle mayo. Great batter on the fish, which is also flakey and good.
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The Walking Taco

If you throw some beans, cheese, and crema in a bag of Fritos it’s not going to be bad.

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Suggested Reading

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Bub City

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Fish Bar is like the offspring of a New England fish shack that spent some time in New Orleans. Nothing wrong with that.

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Shaman is a small plates Mexican BYOB spot from the same people who brought you Chilam Balam, and it's one of the better BYOB restaurants around.

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Antique Taco is a homey spot for any casual meal in Wicker Park. Definitely eat tacos and maybe even buy yourself some antique furniture.

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