Chicago’s Nutella Twinkie Trumps An Actual Twinkie

The Twinkie is back, and we’re celebrating by not eating one but heading to these restaurants for local riffs on lunchbox desserts instead.
Break us off a piece of chef Martial Noguier’s twist on a Kit Kat bar: a crunchy, flaky chocolate bar classed up with bittersweet chocolate and a light drizzle of an orange sauce made with Grand Marnier. Then break us off another piece. And another. Give us a break — this one is too good to share.
Bistronomic, 840 North Wabash Avenue (at Pearson Street); 312-944-8400.
Bull & Bear
As a kid, we wouldn’t have touched a Pop Tart filled with smoked turkey. Actually, we still wouldn’t. But Bull & Bear chef David Blonsky is a far cry from Kellogg’s, and we will gobble his smoked turkey “Pop Tart” — featuring some of the best house-smoked bird we’ve ever had, plus gooey cheese — any day of the week. Or at least every Saturday and Sunday during brunch, the only time Blonsky’s pastries are available. If you’re craving a sweet filling, go for the strawberry-cheesecake version.
Bull & Bear, 431 North Wells Street (at Hubbard Street); 312-527-5973.
Public House
Picture a Twinkie, but giant, and made by a chef, and not labeled with an extended 45-day shelf life, and stuffed with seasonal fruit, or caramel and banana, or — drumroll — Nutella and peanut butter. That’s what you’ll get at brunch at this River North restaurant/bar. Fillings change weekly.
Public House, 400 North State Street (at Kinzie Street); 312-265-1240.
2 Sparrows
Foie gras has made the dessert rounds nationwide in everything from cheesecake to profiteroles, but we think one of the best sweet-savory combos is found right on Diversey, with the cherry-foie gras riff on a Pop Tart. Liver lovers only: The thick, creamy filling is foie-forward, with a tart aftertaste of black-cherry preserves. Vegetarians will be just as happy with the baked-golden-brown strawberry-balsamic option.
2 Sparrows, 553 West Diversey Parkway (at Lehmann Court); 773-234-2320.
Photo: Courtesy of Bull & Bear

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