OK, it's a tenderloin, not a chop. Sue me. It's still a fabulous slab of grilled pork, jazzed up with a secret, 10-ingredient seasoning (black pepper and rosemary prominent among the accents), plopped on a pile of rich mashed potatoes (yes, mashed) and nestled in a soft bun (made each morning by a local bakery). Porky heaven.
Fourscore and 700 calories ago, I took my first few bites of the Abe Lincoln Sandwich from Skrine Chops in Chicago. In a tribute to our 16th president, they've stacked up sausages like Lincoln Logs, set them atop a bed of mashed potatoes and doused them in barbecue sauce, all on a hamburger bun.
First impressions: Skrine (rhymes with mine) Chops in Forest Park feels like a North Woods hunting lodge. Everything, from the wide plank tables to the chairs to the floor, is wood. Taxidermy animals -- a fox, a polar bear and a wild cat among them -- glare down at patrons. The light is dim, even at midday. The menu is simple and hearty and involves a lot of simply prepared meats. All of this adds up to a very cozy little bar and restaurant, especially in the winter. And, it turns out, this Skrine Chops which opened in April (there's another location at 400 S. Financial Place in Chicago), is a great place to take kids before the bar gets cranking, thanks to the menagerie of stuffed game and a model train that circles the restaurant overhead.