mEAT Restaurant

I make it a point to meal plan each and every week as it helps keep my budget in check. That being said, it is nice to be able to go out to dinner every once in awhile and just "treat yo self!" Some people assume eating at restaurants and staying paleo is hard. I would disagree, especially after my recent experience at mEAT.

Two weeks ago, I (and 9 other fantastic Chicago foodies) had the pleasure of dining at mEAT Restaurant in Lakeview. The atmosphere is modern, fun and inviting. Bonus, this location apparently has swings outside when the weather is nice! Note to self: come back in Spring. When you first glance at their menu you are going to notice something that sets this place apart from 99% of the other restaurants in the city. mEAT's menu specifically marks items that are already paleo friendly or have paleo friendly options available. They also mark items that are gluten free. Since mEAT makes it so easy, it seemed right to order just about everything on the menu.

In order to handle the stress of selecting items, I started off with a cocktail. The Rose Petal Old Fashioned I ordered takes a unique twist on an Old Fashioned by giving it a slight sweetness with muddled cherry/orange and fresh rose petal jam. It was the perfect palate opener. To add a healthy balance to my drink, I started off with the Kale Caeser salad. John, one of the owners, was kind enough to make sure I knew this dish was no longer strictly paleo (due to cheese in the dressing,) but I still couldn't resist! The egg was poached perfectly and gave a nice balance to the crunchy kale.

Next began my feast of meat skewers. I was giddy over the large number of gluten free and/or paleo options in this section, so I ordered four. The Bacon Wrapped Chicken was stuffed with cream cheese and jalapeno. The filling was light and it balanced well between the crispy chicken and bacon, but I was hoping it would have a bit more of a kick to it! The Bourbon Chicken skewer was delivered to us accidentally and I couldn't help but try a bite! It had a slightly sticky, teriyaki flavor that was fun. Blackened Mahi Mahi and Rosemary Mint Pork were my favorites. The mahi mahi, cooked perfectly, counteracted the blackend cajun seasoning through its naturally sweet taste. The pork skewer (the crown jewel) was served with an apple raisin chutney that I used sparingly. The tender pork had a delicate rosemary mint taste that didn't overpower and was fabulous on its own. I am going to be dreaming about this in the future.

Brussels sprouts, my favorite vegetable, are the only side I ordered. For lack of more sophisticated wording, these were the shit. Balsamic can be overpowering, but the reduction was done right. Paired with the slightly crispy sprouts and the bacon, I give it a 10/10. mEAT also offers a paleo dessert Avocado Mousse that is to die for. It is rich and creamy. In fact, it is so rich that I recommend you split it with someone else. If you don't, you will never stop eating (because it's THAT good) and then you'll get to the "I need to unbutton my pants because I can barely move" stage. It would be worth it, but let's be honest...nobody likes that stage.

Whether you eat paleo/gluten free or not, add this one to your list. With a unique list of cocktails and a great variety of food, this is sure to appeal to everyone in your crew. Especially if you take advantage of their Happy Hour special (Mon-Thu, 5-7pm, 1/2 off specialty drinks!)

Not Paleo? Not a problem.

Contributing Author: Jeana Wene

Recently, I decided give up dairy, an uncharacteristic behavior for someone who could live off of cream cheese (bagel on the side). Katie, who swears by the positive effects she experienced, challenged me to go 21 days without. That’s just enough time for the cheese currently pumping through my veins to work its way out. On Day 9 of my detox, I had the pleasure of visiting mEAT Chicago. Had I dined at mEAT 10 days earlier, I would have ordered the Fondue Mac N Cheese, but I hate to lose a challenge to Katie. Lucky for me, mEAT promotes a paleo-friendly (therefore, dairy-free) menu.

I’m not "meat obsessed" (large slabs of meat intimidate me), but I loved every bite of the meat skewers that were presented to us. Yes, I mean presented. My favorite was the Rosemary Mint Pork. The Apple Raisin Chutney, served on the side, was a perfect pairing. We consumed enough meat to feed a cruise ship at sea for a week and still ordered Avocado Mousse for dessert. I’ve never considered an avocado/chocolate combo possible before, but it was delicious. The amount of chocolate was satisfying and I obsessed over how dense the mousse was. I’d prefer to devour a bowl of this over a pint of ice cream any day. (My sole mission is to now track Katie’s status on recreating this recipe... you’re welcome, world.) I also have to present an award to the cocktail menu and to the bartender for serving some of the strongest drinks I have ever imbibed. The drinks I ordered (yes, plural) were deadly. When I say deadly, I mean perfect. From the booze to the food to the lighting, mEAT stands out from the rest. They do what they know and they do it well. I will without a doubt return here in the future (whether I'm hungry or not) and I will definitely order a Kentucky Negroni cocktail before I even make it to my seat.

mEAT Restaurant

Rose Petal Old Fashioned & Kentucky Negroni

Rose Petal Old Fashioned & Kentucky Negroni

Kale Caeser

Kale Caeser

Meat Skewers

Meat Skewers

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts

Avocado Mousse

Avocado Mousse

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