Mike’s Chili Parlor

Review by: Michael Stern

Opened in 1922, Mike’s Chili Parlor is one of an endangered breed of restaurant: the urban chili parlor. Other than in Cincinnati, where chili culture still thrives, there are precious few good, cheap, blue-collar eateries where chili is king.

We must tell you that this is NOT gourmet-yuppie-celebrity chef chili. It is coarse-ground beef with enough grease that when it is served by the bowl, your spoon will slide through a glistening layer on top before it hits meat. An old article posted on the wall describes it as “Mexican with a touch of Chicago and a pinch of old Greece.” The Chicago touch is evident in the item listed on the menu, strangely, as chili pasta: chili served atop a bed of limp spaghetti noodles, a gloss on the Windy City’s chili mac. Greek spice pervades the meat which is more Mediterranean sweet than Mexican hot.

Hamburgers are great in a hash-house way, but the number one sandwich is a chili dog topped with cheese and onions. And to drink, if beer is not your choice, have some lemonade. It’s fresh-squeezed!

PLEASE NOTE: Because it is a bar, people under 21 are not allowed to eat here.

What To Eat

Chili Bowl

Chili Dog

Chili Pasta



Mike’s Chili Parlor Recipes


What do you think of Mike’s Chili Parlor?

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