1. Smoked trout, 2. Winter car picnic, 3. Smoked Chubs, 4. Dad & Sherri with our lunch bounty
Christmas has come and gone, my family has been here 10 days, much love has been shared all round, meals have been cooked and eaten, our waistlines expanded as a result, and all eight of us successfully made our way to Chicago in two cars and in the middle of a snow shower. In other words, there has been much to blog about. But between enjoying the family's company, soaking in all that we love about Chicago, and trying to keep up with a rambunctious hellion of a 17-month old, time to ourselves has been too precious to squander on the Internet.
BUT- for what I am about to share with you, I will make an exception. Because something so awesome cannot be kept to oneself, something so mind-blowingly delicious cannot be contained. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Calumet Fisheries. In the city of Hot Doug's foie-gras hotdog, droolsome La Pasadita tacos, and robust dry-aged streaks, the smoked fish from Calumet has shot to the top of our must-eats in Chicago. Yes, humble smoked fish. Old school style. Smoked and sold in a literal shack on the Calumet Bridge on Chicago's South Side. And yet, recognized not only by food experts like Anthony Bourdain but also the James Beard Foundation Awards in the America’s Classics category.
And now we know why. Because the smoked seafood is just downright delicious, *freaking* delicious. Delicious, I tell you. Succulent, toothsome shrimp; flavorful trout; and the chubs, oh, don't even get me started on the chubs- fatty, silken, melt-in-your-mouth awesome. I was having a smoked fish epiphany and I didn't think one could have a smoked fish epiphany. And all this at the back of our rental car in the middle of a parking lot along Lake Shore Drive, with half my mind on whether or not Sophie was taking a good nap. So imagine how much more my mind (and gut) would have been blown had I had all my wits about me and was enjoying my meal sitting down properly somewhere. We might just take a detour and pack ourselves some more smoked fish on our drive back to Ann Arbor. Oh heck, we shall...
People, I kid you not. Calumet Fisheries. On the South Side of Chicago. It will be worth your while. Go. Please.