Friday, August 6, 2010

Tasty, tasty goat at Birrieria Zaragoza

Last weekend, we inadvertently did a tour of Yelp's top Chicago restaurants. That Alinea would be near the top of Chicago's Yelp ratings is obvious, but we had no idea that (as of this posting) Birrieria Zaragoza would hold the top spot. A lot of people have issues with Yelp, and Zaragoza's perch on top of the Chicago Yelp scene has a lot to do with these issues: namely, small, self-selecting samples can hardly be expected to yield reliable results. Leaving aside the sampling issues, though, one fact remains. Birrieria Zaragoza makes some damn tasty goat. And it's a good thing they do, because that's really your only option if you choose to dine there. The menu consists of large plates of goat, small plates of goat, and goat tacos. If you aren't in the mood for goat, you can order quesadillas or tortillas and salsa, but if you aren't in the mood for goat, I have no idea why you would make the trek down to this place.
Zaragoza is a family run place, and everyone working there is super nice and clearly enthusiastic about what they do. So, while the food is great, the friendly service may be even better.

Birria is a stewed meat dish, typically made with goat, that hails from Central Mexico. Zaragoza's version is absolutely delicious. It's not too far away from Midway airport, so it's definitely worth checking out if you need to go there for any reason. The birria (pictured above) comes in a variety of different textures - from crispy to falling apart tender - depending on the particular cut. A plate of goat is served with freshly made tortillas, and it's a good idea to order a side of their salsa
You can eat the birria alone or you can make your own tacos. I recommend the later because the fresh tortillas are so good.

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