Cemitas Puebla, the tiny Mexican restaurant that gained fame on Food Network's "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives" and sent Chicago's adventure-seeking eaters flocking to Humboldt Park for traditional poblano sandwiches, is joining the Fulton Market frenzy, opening up at 817 W. Fulton Market (between PQM and Glazed and Infused) later this spring.
According to owner Tony Anteliz, "it will be like no other taqueria in Chicago," but purists craving his family recipes need not worry; aside from a Fulton-worthy facelift, the menu will remain exactly the same. Anteliz also promises the price point will increase no more than $1.50 per item "so customers will still be able to enjoy a great meal for 9-10 bucks."
Like the original, the Fulton location will have counter service and seating for about 40, but with a completely new design aesthetic "combining industrial, antique, and modern touches for a clean, hip look" from Michael Newman of Estudiotres. Also new: the essential single-proofed, hand-formed cemita rolls will be baked on site to "ensure they never, ever run out of bread."
Named one of Eater Chicago's "most iconic sandwiches" last year, Cemitas Puebla's eponymous signature dish is comprised of layers of avocado, your choice of meat, adobo chipotle peppers, fresh Oaxacan cheese and papalo (an herbaceous green similar to arugula) between two hearty slices of a sesame studded roll.
Since opening the original Cemitas Puebla in 2005, Anteliz has been approached several times to open a second location, but it was partnering with a longtime customer that finally sold him on the idea, and "the timing was right." After consulting industry friends Curtis Duffy of Grace and Jimmy Graziano, owner of JP Grazianos (both on W. Randolph) Anteliz is "confident" that his approach to Mexican cuisine "will be a perfect fit for the Fulton Market area."
· Cemitas Puebla [Official Site]