Price Point: $14 for choripán at Rural Society
The grill at Rural Society (455 North Park Drive, Streeterville, 312-840-6605) commands your attention from the moment you walk in. Actually, that's not quite accurate, because this isn't just one grill—it's a wall burning hot charcoal, stacked up and ready for whatever the chefs want to throw at it. You'd assume anything cooked in that general area has decent chance of holding up, and you'd be right. Every meat I sampled from the grill had the unmistakable hint of smoke, along with signs of expertly used high heat.
That includes the chorizo, a glorious browned link of chile-hued sausage, which forms the soul of the choripán. Bursting with juice, with a crisp outer casing, the sausage unleashes a molten interior of cheese when you bite in (consider yourself warned.) The cooks have the audacity to outfit the sandwich with little more than a smoked tomato laid on top, and the barest hint of chimichurri, and yet it works.
So it's kind of disappointing that the bun isn't up to the same high standard, falling apart into a mess of crumbs after a few bites. It's especially confusing considering the bread brought out in the beginning of the meal is so good. Dine with knife and fork at the ready.