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Katie Davis

@PopCultureCuisine

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Memories Remade…With a Twist

Monday, August 22, 2011 @ 06:08 PM

018Who doesn’t love a hot soft pretzel?  Well, I’m sure there are plenty of people who don’t, but I have always been a huge fan of the carbo- goodness that is these giant treats.  I am also one of those people that have never really discriminated against a carb of any kind…or soft pretzels for that matter, so I am always excited when I see new places experimenting with them in a variety of ways; and I’m sure I’m not the only one out there who has fallen trap to that intoxicating scent that wafts through most malls in the U.S….you know those kiosks I’m referring to.

Ya…, I get easily excited about something as simple as pretzels, so it was not surprising that I went ecstatic when I heard about a little company in Chicago called Kim & Scotts Gourmet Pretzels.  Started by a husband and wife team with a passion, they decided to create the ultimate in soft pretzels by introducing unique flavors, stuffed options, and targeting the market by selling them in stores and shipping them around the nation.  We actually first heard about what they were doing through the now extinct show from The Food Network, “Road Tasted,” and it was seeing them only once that got our mouths watering and put us on the search to try these delectable looking creations.  Take a look:

Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XgaPW0XTCBc

But the story does not end with us just venturing out to our local grocer, rather it begins with a wonderful birthday surprise from my hubby the first year we were dating.  Being the super sweet guy that he is, he planned an entire day of things for us to do in and around the Chicago area; and being that we had been talking about the pretzels for a while, the first item on our list that day was heading to the Kohl’s Children’s Museum in Glenview, where it just so happened that Kim & Scott’s had a café (at the time) where you can…wait for it…you ready?….MAKE YOUR OWN PRETZELS!

We had a blast making our own pretzels and enjoying sandwiches made with their pretzel bread. Unfortunately, being so long ago, we didn’t document any of it. To make matters worse, after we moved back to the Midwest, we found out the location at the museum was actually not there anymore, so we were a bit bummed that we may never be able to properly introduce our readers to the fun and exciting world of Kim & Scott’s.  I knew we could buy and make the pretzels ourselves, but where is the fun in that?

Nonetheless, leave it to my husband to continually do research and keep ideas on the back burner to surprise me; and without fail, this past year on my birthday weekend in the city, we end up stopping by none other than the newly opened Lincoln Park location of the Kim and Scott’s Café Twist.  I was truly surprised, yet again, but so excited that I would get to experience these fresh pretzels again.  The café was amazing too. Not only can you get any number of their pretzel flavors, but the menu is quite extensive from sandwiches, to salads, paninis, and of course the “Make Your Own Sweet” option!…just like we did that first year. I was so happy!

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We had just come from lunch, so we weren’t exactly starving, but you better believe I was all about creating and enjoying my own sweet version again.  We may have gotten a few funny stares from all the trendy and hip Lincoln Park folks, but leave it to Adam and I not to care and just enjoy acting like kids.  When and where else are you going to twist and decorate your own s’mores or rainbow pretzel? Hardly ever I’d imagine, so we dove in and chose to do one of each so we could try the variety of sweetness.

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It is exactly how it looks. They give you dough and toppings and you literally go to town until you are ready for them to bake it.  We had such a great time getting to the final product, and it wasn’t long before our yummy goodies were hot out of the oven and ready for us to devour!

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They were just as good, if not better than we had remembered. However, we filled up pretty fast and weren’t able to finish them off. Still, the whole experience of just creating the pretzels again was memory enough.  I’m so glad to know that they are now located in the heart of the city, because after perusing the menu, I know I’m going to want to go back for another visit and try some of the other treats.

SIGNATURE DISH: PRETZELS!  And what them so unique is the variety and what they are doing with them.  From using a pretzel as the bread on a sandwich to stuffing them with cheese or whatever else…, genius!

TASTE: While I have not tasted every variety of pretzel that they offer, I have tried quite a few and have to say that they are all pretty amazing.  Whether you are looking for a plain, sweet, or savory option, they have all of your bases covered and are offering a unique taste to a dish you already know and love.

AMBIANCE: Having been to both of their café’s now, with the one at the Children’s Museum having closed, I would have to say I enjoyed the one in Lincoln Park that much better.  It truly felt like a café with its intimate dining space and simple decor.  True…I may be partial because I love that part of Chicago, but it just felt like the type of place that fit the neighborhood.

PRICE: At $5.95 to twist your own pretzel, I’d say that is pretty reasonable when you want an interactive experience; and all of their sandwiches run about $7.95, which for a lunch spot in Chicago is very reasonable.  Also, given the uniqueness of the whole experience, I could see where they could charge more, but it is nice to know that they are catering to their customers and offering a wonderful product at a great price.

SERVICE: Everyone we have ever encountered at either café has been super friendly towards us and very willing to help.  They have never once discouraged us, being the age we are, from creating our own treats, rather they all seem to adopt the same childlike sense of happiness about it all too.

Overall, I love, love, love Kim & Scotts Pretzels, and although I rarely ever buy them when I am at the store, after writing this post I am sure tempted to pick up a box or two next time I’m there.  So if you are ever in the Chicago area and looking for a unique spot to grab lunch and have a little fun at the same time, definitely check out Kim & Scott’s Café Twist. It deservedly worth a rare given PCC 5 ‘Little Piggies.’

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One Response to “Memories Remade…With a Twist”

  1. i’m so behind on google reader bc i’ve been traveling…wish i’d read this BEFORE i was in chicago last weekend! next time…!

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