Greektown or Halsted is well known in food circles. It is the part of Chicago where you can go to enjoy Hellenic treats like lamb, gyros, or baklava. The streets are lined with Greek bistros that promise family style meals and lively music. Greektown has also received the reputation for being hip and trendy. (Especially for certain actors in town) Yuppies habitate lofts and spend the morning at Starbucks.
Today , Jen and I wandered to the land of gyros to try the food at a homey little bistro called Meli Cafe. The bistro also has locations on Dearborn and Wells as well. If you are planning on having a dinner at Meli , be forewarned. Meli closes at three. It does make a pleasant brunch/lunch place and you can’t get any healthier than the food there. Gluten free and vegan eaters are definitely welcome. Hurray! you can also get egg whites in your meal as well. There are so many choices for breakfast/brunch that you will have to come back to try everything on their menu. Be sure to prepare for blue ribbon service from this crew. Everyone was so friendly and kept asking if there was anything else. Believe me, you will not go away from this place hungry.
We started off with a drink. Jen needs to work on being more adventurous . I was quite pleased to try one of the special smoothies. Meli has it all. They have coffee to start your day with. They also have one of the most extensive juice bars that I have seen in quite a while. Forget about plain old oj here. You can indulge in anything from pear juice to juice blends that cleanse your system. I started my meal with the island breeze smoothie. It was tropical heaven in a glass. Frozen yogurt was mixed in a glass with pineapple, banana, mango, orange juice, and kiwi. It was so delicious that it should have been mixed with rum.
Choosing to forgo breakfast for this time, we decided to try the lunch menu. Salads are an event because they are packed with healthy vegetables and homemade dressings. Wraps and sandwiches are accompanied with sides like hand cut fries or pasta salad. Take the meal to another level with homemade ketchup. Delish!! Jen tried the brisket burger which was a thicker burger with cheese. I tried the reuben and found it to be delightful with the rye bread and piles of corned beef and melted swiss between the sauerkraut. We also shared the club which was toasted brioche, turkey , bacon, lettuce . tomato, and mayonaise. What was amazing about the sandwich is that the bacon was nice and crispy. Before we left, we had to get a glass of their special homemade lemonade. They were so nice that they filled up our water bottle with lemonade so we could stay nice and hydrated.
Meli Cafe is found in three locations in Chicago. All of them serve the healthiest and yummiest breakfasts in town. The Meli we ate at was located in the heart of Greektown at 301 S Halsted Street.