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What the heck is Saluki?
Two blocks away from the craziness of Division Street between State and Dearborn (commonly known as Rush & Division), there’s a neighborhood bar. It’s so local that I may be drawn and quartered for even mentioning it.
To the uninitiated, Saluki sounds like an odd name for a watering hole. The first time I heard it I thought it was a Japanese restaurant. It wasn’t until I’d been there a few times, and football season began, and I “Google’d” the odd word, that I learned that a Saluki is the brave, fleet, and plain old ugly mascot of Southern Illinois University. The Indiana girl in me equates it to a bar named “Hoosiers” or “Boilermakers”. I get it.
One of my best friends lives around the corner from Saluki, so it’s become a fairly frequent hang-out for me as well. It’s not so frequent that I expect the bartenders to remember my cocktail of choice, but they do. There are rows of TVs above the bar, a pool table in the back, a raised banquette of booths, and barstools upholstered with fabric reminiscent of your grandmother’s couch.
The menu goes way beyond traditional bar food. You can fill up on burgers and nachos, or you can try oysters rockefeller, braised lamb shank, chicken vesuvio, or one of my favorites, the Mediterranean salad with beef tenderloin.
If you’re in the Gold Coast looking for a local hangout, walk the extra two blocks to Saluki. Just don’t tell ’em I sent you.
Saluki, 1208 N Wells St, (312)274-1824