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in South Side or 79th on the Red line

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Yassa

View Map716 E. 79th St., Chicago
Tel: (773) 488-5599
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Editorial Review of Yassa

Whole fish sided by plantains.
photo: Misty Tosh
I was clued in about Yassa from a West African friend who told me I'd never tasted fish like the charcoal grilled tilapia and claimed its jollof rice was the tastiest he'd had since coming here from Senegal; when I hear pearls of wisdom from a true insider, there's nothing left for me to do but hit the road, and quick.

That was all the recommendation we needed. After arriving, our waitress started babbling about what we needed to order. No menu, no nothing. That ain't the way it works at Yassa. You order what the chef says is good, plain and simple. She told us to order two grilled whole fish with sweet onion sauce, one with plantains and one with jollof rice. Well hell, honey, bring it on.

Half an hour later, we ourselves elbow-deep in some of the most delicious fish I've ever put in my mouth. Imagine a whole fish that has been marinated for hours and thrown directly on coals until it was cooked to blackened perfection. The skin was crunchy and sweet while the cloudy white flesh was tender and running with juice. Every bite literally blew us away.

Though I hate to expose this hideaway, secrets like this cannot be kept. Expect the hordes to arrive soon.

Average cost: $10-$20

Centerstage Reviewer: Misty Tosh

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Hours

11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Friday-Saturday

Directions to Yassa

Our directions are included with our maps of Yassa
Yassa was mentioned in these articles...

Going South-South-South, 8/7/06
Misty heads to 79th Street for African eats that top all previous meals.

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