Hours: Breakfast, lunch: Sunday, Tuesday-Saturday
Diner-y spot in Auburn-Gresham serving everything from burgers and salads to Philly cheesesteaks and catfish sandwiches. But the regulars who pack the place come for the seafood gumbo.
"You've got to try the gumbo," I was told. "But be sure and go early—they sell out." It's a really fine bowl of gumbo, a cut above for a diner-y place for sure, as you can tell just from the properly chopped green onions on top. And from a single bite you can tell that there's classical kitchen training behind it. Chef-owner Wallace Effort—in actuality, there's only one chef, not three—worked at Spiaggia and for a food-service company before going out on his own. The roux was made the right way, and the shrimp and slices of chicken sausage—which were more flavorful than you might expect—weren't overcooked in the big pot. Most impressive was that there were real crawfish tails in it. Crawfish tails should be in gumbo, but they usually aren't in Chicago. Everything about this very nice bowl bespoke unusual care for the $5.99 price tag. The other thing that impressed me about the place: there I was at noon on a Tuesday, on a pretty nowhere strip toward the end of the road in Chicago, the only other restaurant close by a 24-hour hot dog joint that looked like it was ready for Mad Max to show up for a polish and fries, and Three Chefs was packed. This place's superior food has clearly found an audience.
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