What is it with Chicago natives filling dining scene gaps in Houston's Midtown? Chicago-born Michael Paolucci debuted his hospitality group IronCress by opening Cook & Collins to counter the saturation of bars in that area. Now, another Chicago-hailing local has opened small, walk-up establishment Maxwell Street Grill on Almeda (map at right) to provide a good-fast-food destination. "I've been here three years and love the city, but when it comes to quick eats, the choices are McDonald's, Whataburger — which is actually good — and Popeye's,"co-owner Roosevelt Brown tells Eater. "There weren't many good, fast places, and I didn't want to go home, so I figured I'd bring a little of Chicago here." While Brown and fellow co-owner Ken Reynolds offer a chopped steak sandwich with a secret Chicago-sourced sauce, hot dogs and hamburgers at this new outpost, it's definitely the Maxwell Street Polish that's the star item. J.J. Sausage's kiełbasa is topped with grilled onions, mustard and peppers to create an authentic Midwestern staple. Brown explains that in Chicago, throngs of people head to Maxwell Street Market, grab a Polish sausage and walk around with it in hand as they peruse the flea markets in that neighborhood. The idea for this successful franchise stemmed from that tradition.
While a Swamplot reader said that i'ts "really tasty stuff," another draw is Maxwell Street Grill's late-night hours. It will be open until 3 a.m. Thursday through Sunday and until 11 p.m. Monday through Wednesday.
· Maxwell Street Grill [Facebook]
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