Some people have claimed that the Chicago neighborhood of Andersonville is becoming the second Boystown, and the addition of two businesses that originated in that part of Lake ViewReplay ( 5358 N. Clark St.; ReplayAndersonville.com ) and the adjoining lounge Elixir ( 1509 W. Balmoral Ave.; www.facebook.com/elixirandersonville )will do little to dissuade them.
However, at least from a culinary point of view, I'm urging people to check out Replay. ( I haven't yet checked out Elixir's vibe, which is why this piece will center on only Replay. )
Like the original Replay, the Andersonville establishment has the free retro video gamespatrons can play Donkey Kong, Ms. Pac-Man, Centipede, Michael Jackson's Moonwalker ( which I didn't even know was a game ) or one of several others. Of course, this one also serves food, unlike the Boystown bar.
Going to Replay for brunch was a very fun experience, I must say ( or write ). One of the things I immediately liked was that Replay opens at 9 a.m. for brunch for early birds. ( It seems that half the world wants to meet at 11 a.m. on the weekends. But don't worry about Replay running out of room, as Elixir opens for the overflow crowd. )
Whatever time you decide to go to Replay, the food is worth the trip. Chefs Bernardo Ibarra and Steve Farbstein ( who told me "Nothing is small here" and that Replay wants to offer something that's "familiar, but a step beyond" ) offer generous portions of dishes, whether they're "savories," "sweets & batters" or "house specialties." The corned-beef hash and lobster Benedict are outstanding comfort-food dishes, and my friend enjoyed his egg-white scrambleproving that there's something for everyone.
Come for the food and stay for the atmosphere at Replaythey may be enough to even change complainers' minds about having a second Boystown.