Founded in 1927 by two brothers from Poland, this market is a true throwback. When John and Gene started their sausage shop in the city of Chicago, it was still the era of Prohibition. Fast forward a few years, moves, and expansions, and the European-style market re-opened in Lincoln Square in 2009.
Upon entering, you will swear you've been swept into a marketplace of a bygone era. Huge sausages hang from the ceiling, the deli is teeming with homemade delights, fresh bread (still warm) is beckoning, and that's just the first floor. Meander past the fresh produce and artisanal cheeses, ascend the enormous staircase, and you'll find yourself in the "spiritual" section. By this I mean a worldwide selection of beers, wines, and liquor that will leave you wanting for nothing. There is also an array of snacks and other necessary kitchen sundries, should you need to fortify your picnic basket before departing.
When the season is right and the weather is nice, the rooftop beer and wine garden opens up. Food is served, music is played, and the seating is communal, so you'll make friends—guaranteed. It may not be Europe, but it sure does feel like it.