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POLISH CHICAGO

From historic churches to wood smoked sausage, discover Polish culture in Chicago.

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Many of Chicago's economic, architectural and cultural accomplishments can be traced back to the city's proud Polish roots. As one of the city's largest European populations, this city is shrouded in a proud Polish tradition.  

Chicago's Polish Tradition

St. Hyacinth BasilicaAs the centerpiece of Jackowo, Chicago's Polish Village, St. Hyacinth Basilica (3640 W. Wolfram St.) is one of the most celebrated cultural institutions in the city. For more than 120 years, visitors have been stunned by the enormous mural dome and Baroque-style influence of this architectural masterpiece.

Named for Polish nobleman and American Revolutionary War hero, Casimir Pulaski, Pulaski Park (1419 W. Blackhawk St.) is a green space and field house on Chicago's West Side. Designed by architect William Carbys Zimmerman and celebrated landscape architect Jens Jensen, this striking public area is one of Chicago's prized hidden gems.

The St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish (1327 N. Noble St.), often referred to as the "mother church" of Chicago's Polish community, is a stunning sanctuary designed by Patrick C. Keely, the architect behind Chicago's Holy Name Cathedral. In the late 19th century, St. Stanislaus Kostka Parish was the largest parish in the country boasting a congregation of more than 40,000 people.

Authentic Polish Sausage & Fare

Polish Sausage There aren't a whole lot of absolute truths in this world, but we can say with outright certainty that you will get a delicious Eastern European-style sausage at Endy's Deli (3055 N. Milwaukee Ave.). Located near Kurowski's Sausage, another one of Chicago's legendary Polish food stops, Endy's is a can't-miss place for authentic Polish cuisine.

If you're looking for encased meats or rye bread, all roads in Chicago lead to Kurowski's Sausage (2976 N. Milwaukee Ave.). This intensely popular Polish grocery store is famous for its rare European spices, dill pickles and wood smoked meats. Don't leave Chicago without an order of kielbasas from this Avondale staple.

Established in 1918, Andy's Deli (5422 N. Milwaukee Ave.) is a local leader in specialty European meat products. For perfectly seasoned sausage - both fresh and frozen - this authentic Polish grocery store is a must-visit.

Famous for its Hungarian-style pancakes and Pirogues, Smak-Tak (5961 N. Elston Ave.) is an authentic Polish restaurant on Chicago's Northwest Side. Guests with an appetite will love its generous portions, while budget-conscious diners will appreciate the low price point and BYOB option.

Potato pancakes and pirogues are so delicious that you can't eat just one plate full, so visit the buffet at Red Apple Restaurant (3121 N. Milwaukee Ave.) for unlimited Polish cuisine. With a wide variety of dishes and a lively dining atmosphere, you'll find quality in bulk at this charming Avondale eatery.

As perhaps Chicago's most heralded Polish restaurant, Staropolska (3030 N. Milwaukee Ave.) offers big portions and, as expected, the best stuffed cabbage in Chicago. The décor of the dining space has a strong European influence, the service is impeccable and you'll find Poland's best beers on tap. Okrzyki!

Uncovering Chicago's Polish Culture

Polish Museum of America Neighboring the historic center of the first Polish Community in Chicago, The Polish Museum of America (984 N. Milwaukee Ave.) is one of the largest institutions of its kind in the United States. Featuring a library, archives and exhibits, visitors will be inspired by the profound cultural allure of this ethnic museum.  

Home to the awe-inspiring Gateway Theater, the Copernicus Foundation (5216 W. Lawrence Ave.) is a cultural epicenter for the Polish community. This center for the arts features an exciting calendar of performances and draws thousands of visitors to its annual summer celebration, Taste of Polonia.


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