Mar 4, 2024 - Food and Drink

Moles are the stars of Manchamanteles

Plates with mole and a plate of tortillas.

Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

I recently stopped in at the old Lazo's Tacos space on Western and Armitage and found a delicious surprise.

Chicago's grandmaster of Mexican moles, Geno Bahena, has taken over the 380-seat spot and called it Manchamanteles after one of his signature sauces.

The bite: Gems here include wood-grilled steak tacos, pumpkin soup and velvety handmade tortillas.

  • But the crown jewel is the hauntingly spicy, sweet, savory and smoky manchamanteles mole (meaning stained tablecloth) served over chicken for $20.

What's next: Bahena tells Axios he'll be opening a test kitchen and cooking school space upstairs in coming months.

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