Wednesday, February 6, 2008

It's Bob Marley Day!


Hey, Mon!

On what would've been reggae icon Bob Marley's 63rd birthday (Bob Marley Day is celebrated in Jamaica and Ethiopia today), don't let this dreadful weather get to you.

Warm up by checking into these spots that are all things Jamaican:

Calypso Cafe (5211 S. Harper Ave., 773-955-0229). Go for the jerk chicken Caribbean wrap, oxtail stew, smoked jerk baby back ribs or Rasta Pasta (sauteed jumbo shrimp, red peppers, green peppers, scallion and Jamaican spiced sauce).

Good To Go (1947 W. Howard St., 773-381-7777). Yummy Rogers Park Jamaican spot offers all the usual island delights (and a cow foot entree!), plus a host of delicious smoothies in flavors like Passion Lady (pineapple, ginger, carrot, banana, honey, soy milk), Tropical Treat (strawberry, banana, papaya) and Tidal Wave (kiwi, raspberry, banana, soy milk).

Ja' Grill (1008 W. Armitage Ave., 773-929-5375). New Lincoln Park spot offers all the favorite jerks: chicken, salads, pork and catfish. Also, you'll get curry chicken and shrimp entrees.

Uncle Joe's Tropic Island Jerk Chicken (419 E. 79th St., 773-224-7766). Hands down, the best jerk entrees in Chicago with budget-friendly prices to boot. Here, you'll also get curry goat, red snapper and a brown stew catfish. Lots of Jamaican beverages too, like ginger beer and Kola "champagne."

The Wild Hare (3530 N. Clark St., 773-327-4273). Live-music venue Exodus Lounge (3477 N. Clark St., 773-348-3998) is closed until March 8 for remodeling, but right across the street is this venerable venue where reggae is live seven nights a week. Also, their official Bob Marley birthday celebration happens on Saturday, Feb. 9.

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