7.1
CHI

Dixie

This Restaurant is Permanently Closed
PHOTOS: Sandy Noto

When you show up at Dixie, you’ll see a charming-looking converted house, but you don’t enter through the front door. You’ll go down a sidewalk and enter through the side, as if you were walking into your neighbor’s place through the side door. Once inside, you’ll enter a series of rooms with sloped ceilings, comfy chairs, and old pictures on the walls. You might even be seated in a little nook under a staircase. In other words, Dixie is extremely charming. You know that old TV show Charmed? Yeah, we never watched it either because who the hell watched the WB? But regardless, you’ll be charmed, just like the title of that TV show we didn’t watch.

While the vibe and space are damn near perfect, unfortunately, the traditional Southern food doesn’t quite match up. That’s not to say the food is bad by any stretch - it’s fine. But it won’t live up to your expectations given the incredible setting. It looks pretty on the plate, much prettier than you could make it at home, but much of it tastes like something you could make at home. As in, nothing special. If you’re reading this and saying that you make delicious top-notch restaurant quality food at home: 1) shut up, no one likes a show-off and; 2) invite us over, please.

The menu has all the Southern classics (biscuits, pimento cheese, their version of Hoppin’ John), with a focus on meat. And while the heavy emphasis on meat may make sense for people that are used to caricatures of Southern restaurants, there aren’t enough vegetables and lighter options that make real excellent Southern cooking what it is.

There’s also a bar with a perfectly pretentious (but still kind of cool) name - 1952 ½ - where you can sit in the receiving room of the house and get drunk on all of the finest brown liquors and cocktails. And if brown liquor is your thing, this is the place to drink it. There are the usual bourbon offerings, but there’s also an impressive list of vintage whiskey and cocktails as well.

And that may be the best way to experience Dixie: go grab some drinks, light bites, and enjoy the excellent vibes.

Food Rundown

Carrot Salad

This is a perfect example of what Southern cooking really is, and not what you get on the highway stopping at Cracker Barrel. We recommend adding some of this to the table’s order.

Country Ham

Our favorite thing on the menu. On the smaller side, this is what you’ll want to get regardless of whether you’re going for dinner or just a couple drinks.

Country Captain

Dixie’s version of Hoppin’ John, a southern classic rice-and-beans dish, is a good option for an entree, but again, not a standout like we’d hope.

Mussels

Decent mussels, but our favorite thing about this is the considerable amount of andouille sausage that comes on top. Just order sausage if that’s what you’re going for.

Biscuits

These are definitely biscuits. As in they taste like normal biscuits, which is usually a good thing, but for a Southern restaurant, is a bit of a bummer that they aren’t incredible.

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