The Birmingham Ethnic Neighborhood Festival has come and gone for the 44th time, but there's a place in town where you can still get most of those great festival items, including Toledo's most sought-after Hungarian special.
Turns out, you just stay in Birmingham, and on a Wednesday go around the corner to Bogar and Gennesse streets to Takacs Grocery & Meats, and owner Lou Takacs will be serving the weekly special: chicken paprikas with whole quartered chicken legs.
Lou described his third generation store as, "The barbershop of delis. You come in here to talk as much as anything."
Stand and talk.
Takacs is not a restaurant and the tiny, single-room shop of Old World specialties offers no seating. But the hot paprikas flies from behind the counter in to-go boxes — more than a fair share of which are generously sampled by customers as they're leaving.
It would be even betting on how much chicken paprikas has been eaten in the parking lot at Takacs versus at the festival itself.
The chicken paprikas is a brilliant orange gravy with just the right amount of paprika, perfect little dumplings, and succulent chicken that work in concert to make the most heartwarming aroma.
Hearty. Rib-sticking. Comfort food. "Medicine," one customer called it.
Get your dose on Wednesdays. For more information, visit Takacs Deli at 1956 Genessee St.
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