Amidst the hustle and bustle of Revival Food Hall’s lunch time traffic, Danke’s intimate 12-seat bar offers a respite. Featuring an eclectic selection from top winemakers in both new and old world regions, there isn’t a dish in the hall that we haven’t been able to pair with our wine. Located in the heart of the hall, we feature a full-service menu of sandwiches, cheese and charcuterie plates along with our wine and beer selections. But let’s say you’ve settled into your Secret Sandwich while your friend waits in line for Aloha Poke? No problem. As you’ll soon find out, Revival is a community of vendors who are working together to create a new type of Loop dining experience. So, when your poke-loving co-worker saddles up to our bar, I’ll suggest a Gruner Veltliner from Austria. A dry, refreshing white, this wine will complement the bold flavors in the Volcano Bowl while balancing its spice.
Pairing wines with food hall favorites has become a new challenge, and a great excuse to try so many of my fellow vendors’ dishes. Listed below is a little cheat sheet I’ve compiled of our twelve current wines paired with twelve of my favorite dishes from the hall. Our wine list changes regularly so check back often for new combos.
Revival Food Hall Wine Pairings:
Smoque BBQ– Here the brisket is king, but how about trying our l’Eperonniere Rose de Loire with their sleeper hit, the smoked turkey. This dry rose has a slight earthiness and hint of pepper that will match the smoke like no other.
The Budlong– There is no question that sparkling wine will go with just about anything. BUT, our L’Hereu Brut Cava is perfect with that Extra Hot Fried Chicken. The fresh fruit flavors play off the heat of this spicy Nashville inspired delicacy, while fine bubbles refresh the palate and keep things light.
The Fat Shallot– Call me crazy, but the first thing I thought of when matching our ‘Barrel X’ Riesling from the Mosel region of Germany was Fat Shallot’s Reuben with pastrami and swiss classically sandwiched between marble rye. Its oozy decadence will be offset by the off dry, subtle, sweetness of this standout Riesling.
Graze Kitchenette– What better to pair with Graze’s Burger and Fries than a red that will not overpower but whose fruit and funk will add to the experience. That red is our Paonniere Gamay, a lighter bodied red that with its age has acquired much more personality than one would expect.
Farmer’s Fridge– Though any number of our wines would pair with the fresh selections from The Fridge, I’m going to give our beer menu some love. Pairing Off Color’s Apex Predator Farmhouse Ale is a no-brainer. From the Roast Beef Toast to the Cous Cous Salad the rich, golden flavors and notes fruit in this saison shine through.
Brown Bag Fish Co.– With Truffle Tots and Fried Fish Bites, Brown Bag was just asking to be paired with Philipe Tessier’s Cheverny. A blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Orbois, this is, by far, my favorite wine on our list. Its unique green-fruit, tartness, and grassy notes will only add to your powerbox.
Antique Taco Chiquito– Without question, the Chicken Tacos are on point. How about adding another crowd pleaser to the mix with Vina Real Rioja whose rich, red fruit will create a brilliant contrast to the mint and pickled jalapeño.
Mindy’s Hot Chocolate Bakery– Who cares if it’s breakfast time, don’t you want a glass of Au Bon Climat Pinot Noir with your Brie & Fig Bagel Sandwich?? I know I do. With its elegance, grace and brightness there is no better way to start or end your day.
Union Squared Pizza– In the world of Chicago pizza, Union’s motor-city inspired pizza is a treat. Pair a square of their Pepperoni with the out-there Mascarello Freisa for an adventure in and of itself. This wine packs a punch with its floral aromas and tannic finish.
Aloha Poke– With high-quality fish and layers of complex flavors, what you’ll want with your Volcano Bowl is a wine that is clean, refreshing, light and citrus forward. That is where our Gruner Veltliner comes in. An Austrian varietal, it’s what you’ll want to be drinking all afternoon and into the evening.
Furious Spoon- The Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut, a champagne with citrus notes and a clean dry finish works with the infamous Furious Ramen rather than against. No other wine on our menu could bring out the complex flavors of this delicious broth.
Danke– Last, but not least by any means, Danke’s sandwich and charcuterie menu has been selected side by side with our wines in an effort to create a dining experience that compares to that of our sister restaurant, Table Donkey and Stick, when you might have half the allotted time. After the lunch rush, try one of our charcuterie or cheese boards.
Pair three cheeses from our daily selection such as the Big Woods Blue or the Viamala Swiss with the complex flavors of our Macon Villages Chardonnay and you won’t be disappointed. Next, try the Broadside Cabernet Sauvignon with our meats. Our Duck Liver Mousse (DLM) and Pork Country Pate are drastically different in texture and flavor, but either one would shine against this bright-flavored, round California Cab.
Pro-tip: During the lunch rush, grab a beer from our bar before getting in the queue. Standing on line should be fun, not work.
About the author: Tegan Brace is the General Manager of Danke, a Sandwich Shop and Wine Bar in Revival Food Hall. In her spare time she works to expand her mastery of cheese and wine while splitting that time with her psychedelic-craft-focused art practice.