Author Topic: Visiting Chicago  (Read 6522 times)

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Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Visiting Chicago
« on: August 22, 2018, 06:43 PM »
My wife is going to Chicago for CPE (Continuing Professional Education) next month and I'm going to tag along.

Are there any must see attractions or places to eat?  I'm really not a fan of deep dish pizza.  I'm most interested in getting a Chicago Style Hot Dog.  I was planning on going to Superdawg unless there's a better place.

Thanks!

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Offline Green Mojo

  • Posts: 50
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2018, 07:00 PM »
If you are downtown, Eataly Market is pretty cool.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 11:02 PM by Green Mojo »

Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2018, 07:05 PM »
We're going to be near what I guess is referred to as the Near East Side?  I've heard of Eately Market before, I didn't know there was one in Chicago.  Thanks for that suggestion!  It's only about half a mile from where we're staying.
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Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 821
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2018, 07:56 PM »
The Art Institute has a great collection.  The Field Museum is good. The Shedd Aquarium is nearby. A ballgame at Wrigley is quite the experience.

If you’re an early SNL FAN (Ackroyd and Belushi) the Billy Goat is on lower Wacker in that area.

Chicago deep dish is really unique and very different from the stuff masquerading as it outside Chicago.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 4944
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2018, 10:33 PM »
Chicago is my fav when you need a short time out. It’s dog friendly and that’s really important. So many things to do and experience. If you’re a camera guy carry it with you every day, unlimited photo ops.
As Ron mentioned, get a room close to the lake so that everything is within walking distance.

There are so many things to partake in.  Sweet, being the foodie that you are, you’ll absolutely enjoy the experience.

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 4944
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2018, 10:43 PM »
OMG...I forgot the blues factor. These joints are pumping out blues 24/7. Just take a walk and enter whatever establishment you want and you’ll be mesmerized with the local musicians.  Great local talent.

Sweet...

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5705
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2018, 10:57 PM »
Stop at the Palmer House and have a brownie, it is the birthplace of the brownie.

Gold Coast Dogs on Wabash. I’d send you to Fat Johnies for a Mother in Law, but it’s to far to travel on this trip.

Al’s Italian beef on Adams. Al’s is the birthplace of the Italian beef sandwich. 

Tour the Drieshause Manson.

See the moon rock at the Tribune Tower, look at all the stones of the world while you’re at the Tribune Tower. Turn around, face West, see the Wrigley Building.

See the water tower on the Mag Mile.

Wonder over to 100 West Monroe, look at the door, realize—-it’s there for the cow path...

Dinner with the wife, the Walnut Room at Marshall Fields State St. because it’s the Walnut Room.

After dinner stroll down the river walk, taking in the various “rooms”.

If you need more ideas let me know...

Tom








« Last Edit: August 22, 2018, 11:00 PM by tjbnwi »

Offline George Oliver

  • Posts: 14
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2018, 11:16 PM »
Too bad it looks like the Hot Doug's that used to be on California is closed, but it seems like they're still doing hot dogs somewhere in Chicago? They had killer food.

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5705
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2018, 11:46 PM »
Too bad it looks like the Hot Doug's that used to be on California is closed, but it seems like they're still doing hot dogs somewhere in Chicago? They had killer food.

Doug decided he wanted to do something else with his life.

Tom

Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 821
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2018, 07:07 AM »
If you're a Rick Bayless Mexican fan. Two of his operations are on Clark. The flagship Frontera Grill and Topolobampo

http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/frontera-grill/

http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/topolobampo/

As I recall there are also a few blues bars on Clark as well. Blue Chicago being one.

http://www.bluechicago.com/

Spiaggia is an excellent although expensive Italian place on upper Michigan. Cafe Spiaggia next door is more casual and more reasonable but uses the same kitchen.

http://www.spiaggiarestaurant.com/

Ron

Offline BarneyD

  • Posts: 43
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2018, 08:28 AM »
The narrated architectural cruise is pretty sweet.  Catch the boat at Michigan Ave. and the river.

Millenium Park.

Navy Pier (if you like a bunch of tourists).

The Museum of Science and Industry is awesome ( but a bit of a ride from downtown).
Barney

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5705
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2018, 08:30 AM »
If you really want to do blues, head south on Wabash to Buddy Guy’s Legends.

Tom

Offline Cochese

  • Posts: 294
    • The 144 Workshop
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2018, 09:38 AM »
Grab a pie from Lou Malnati's and have your outlook changed. Key Lime Pie from the Walnut Room.

There's quite a bit of woodworking on display at the Art Institute, including a couple Morris, Stickley, and G&G styles. Some really ornate stuff from long ago too.

Wife isn't doing anything with AHIMA, is she?



Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2018, 06:06 PM »
Thanks for all the great suggestions!
The Art Institute has a great collection.  The Field Museum is good. The Shedd Aquarium is nearby. A ballgame at Wrigley is quite the experience.

If you’re an early SNL FAN (Ackroyd and Belushi) the Billy Goat is on lower Wacker in that area.

Chicago deep dish is really unique and very different from the stuff masquerading as it outside Chicago.

The Museum and Aquarium sounds like fun!  I noticed that the Planetarium is also close by, is it worth checking out?  I'm not really a sport's fan, but Wrigley Field is really well known so that might be a worthwhile experience.

I never was an SNL fan and I don't think I've ever seen any of the early skits.

I guess Pizzeria Uno's isn't really Chicago deep dish.

Chicago is my fav when you need a short time out. It’s dog friendly and that’s really important. So many things to do and experience. If you’re a camera guy carry it with you every day, unlimited photo ops.
As Ron mentioned, get a room close to the lake so that everything is within walking distance.

There are so many things to partake in.  Sweet, being the foodie that you are, you’ll absolutely enjoy the experience.

I own a DSLR, but I've never traveled with it because of its size and weight.  I do have a GoPro Hero 5 that I used to film our trip to Singapore and Bali.  I was thinking out taking the GoPro to film this trip.

The food is definitely what we look forward to the most about a trip!

OMG...I forgot the blues factor. These joints are pumping out blues 24/7. Just take a walk and enter whatever establishment you want and you’ll be mesmerized with the local musicians.  Great local talent.

Sweet...

Unfortunately, I'm not really a blues fan.  I mostly like country music and also listen mostly to 90s, the 2000s, and PopRocks on SiriusXM.

Stop at the Palmer House and have a brownie, it is the birthplace of the brownie.

Gold Coast Dogs on Wabash. I’d send you to Fat Johnies for a Mother in Law, but it’s to far to travel on this trip.

Al’s Italian beef on Adams. Al’s is the birthplace of the Italian beef sandwich. 

Tour the Drieshause Manson.

See the moon rock at the Tribune Tower, look at all the stones of the world while you’re at the Tribune Tower. Turn around, face West, see the Wrigley Building.

See the water tower on the Mag Mile.

Wonder over to 100 West Monroe, look at the door, realize—-it’s there for the cow path...

Dinner with the wife, the Walnut Room at Marshall Fields State St. because it’s the Walnut Room.

After dinner stroll down the river walk, taking in the various “rooms”.

If you need more ideas let me know...

Tom

The birthplace of the brownie?!?!  We absolutely HAVE to go there then!  Same for the birthplace of the Italian beef sandwich.  We love to go to place where something originated.

Too bad it looks like the Hot Doug's that used to be on California is closed, but it seems like they're still doing hot dogs somewhere in Chicago? They had killer food.

Doug decided he wanted to do something else with his life.

Tom

I had seen Hot Doug's on several food programs.  It is too bad he decided to do something different.
If you're a Rick Bayless Mexican fan. Two of his operations are on Clark. The flagship Frontera Grill and Topolobampo

http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/frontera-grill/

http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/topolobampo/

As I recall there are also a few blues bars on Clark as well. Blue Chicago being one.

http://www.bluechicago.com/

Spiaggia is an excellent although expensive Italian place on upper Michigan. Cafe Spiaggia next door is more casual and more reasonable but uses the same kitchen.

http://www.spiaggiarestaurant.com/

Ron

I really liked watching the early episodes of Mexico: One Plate at a Time.  Frontera might be worth checking out.

The narrated architectural cruise is pretty sweet.  Catch the boat at Michigan Ave. and the river.

Millenium Park.

Navy Pier (if you like a bunch of tourists).

The Museum of Science and Industry is awesome ( but a bit of a ride from downtown).

An architectural cruise might be fun.  We did the little cruise on the Riverwalk on San Antonio.  I didn't really want to do it, but it turned out to be pretty interesting.

We'll blend right in with the rest of the tourists  :o.

Oh that is a bit of a ways away.  What's the best way getting around Chicago anyway?  I prefer to walk most places, but the Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium is about 2 miles from our hotel, which is a pretty decent hike especially considering we'd need to walk back.

Grab a pie from Lou Malnati's and have your outlook changed. Key Lime Pie from the Walnut Room.

There's quite a bit of woodworking on display at the Art Institute, including a couple Morris, Stickley, and G&G styles. Some really ornate stuff from long ago too.

Wife isn't doing anything with AHIMA, is she?

Is that the best Deep Dish in Chicago?

Woodworking displays makes the Art Institute sound more appealing to me.  I also like that it's only about 1/2 a mile from the hotel.

Nope she is not.  She's an accountant.  I'm not sure exactly what courses she's taking.
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Offline neilc

  • Posts: 2503
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2018, 07:13 PM »
If you go to the Art Institute, make sure you see the Thorne Rooms.  These are a set of 32 miniature rooms that were commissioned by a woman to be built by master craftsmen from 1932 to 1940.  Adobe rooms.  Shaker rooms.  Japanese rooms.  Colonial America rooms.  Really an amazing permanent exhibit on the lower level of the Art Institute. 

http://www.artic.edu/aic/collections/thorne

Definitely do the architecture tour and even the river walk on the lower level on the south side.  Gives you a very different view of Chicago.  There is both a river only and a river and lake tour.  I'd suggest the latter.  Gives you a great view of the city from the lake.  Takes about 90 minutes as I recall.  I was on it a couple of weeks ago and it never gets old.

Both Willis Tower (former Sears Tower) and 360 Chicago (former Hancock Tower) offer top-of-the-city lookouts if you are interested in a view of the lake and surrounding suburbs from 100 stories up.  360 Chicago has a bar/restaurant on top if you want to do lunch or dinner there.

The Museum of Science and Industry is also a great museum about 10 minute cab ride south of the city on Lakeshore Drive.  Much to see there from a coal mine to an amazing train layout and lots of other ways to spend time.

There is currently a very cool art project on display at the Merchandise Mart along the river.  The Mart is one of the largest office buildings in the country - I think 16 stories tall and two city blocks large.  The exhibit is called 'Canstruction' and is an exhibit on the first and second floors of using vegetable cans to create art.  - Free entry and they really have some cool examples of what you can do with stacking cans.  Dinosaurs, Rhinos.  Ducks.  Buildings.  Elevated Trains.   The exhibit is free and open to the public through September 9th 7 days a week.

The Mart is also the home of several design boutiques for furniture, cabinets and plumbing fixtures.  And the upper floors there are where a lot of the startup community gets going in an incubator on the 12th floor called 1871 - The year of the Chicago fire and the rebirth of the city. 

https://canstructionchicago.org is the site.

The exhibit brochure is here:  https://static1.squarespace.com/static/59127a8986e6c038de5757a9/t/5b7c2295f950b7433ce73392/1534861997976/2018+Canstruction+Chicago+Program-DL.pdf

Chicago is a great city.  Much to do and friendly people.  Great food.  Great theater and some of the best architecture in the world.

neil
« Last Edit: August 23, 2018, 07:17 PM by neilc »

Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 821
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2018, 07:49 PM »
For getting around, Lyft, Uber, taxis, busses run up and down Michigan Ave. the El for getting  to Wrigley

The Thorne rooms are a must see.

A great debate in the Windy City between Lou Malnati and Gino’s although Malnati’s usually gets the nod. Gino’s East is quite the experience though.

Ron


Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 5705
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2018, 08:53 PM »
Yes, The Palmer House is the birthplace of the brownie, it was Berta Palmers contribution to the Colombian Exposition.

Pizzeria Uno is the birthplace of Chicago deep dish pizza.

Once you get to the Museum Campus, take your pick...

While we’re dealing with birth[laces, take a ride on the Navy Pier Ferris wheel. Chicago is the birthplace of the Ferris wheel also.

Tom

Online Cheese

  • Posts: 4944
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #17 on: August 23, 2018, 10:58 PM »
From a foodie to a foodie.... lose the go pro. They’re great for motorcycle shots, but, if you’re real about capturing real life situations, bring the Cannon and just take pictures. I’m a Nikon guy but a lens in the 16-85 range would work well for candid shots. I think it was Ron that suggested Rick Bayless...great suggestion. Great food,

Offline neilc

  • Posts: 2503
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #18 on: August 24, 2018, 07:23 AM »
West Loop has some great restaurants.  It’s West of the Loop across the Interstate.  Lots of gentrification happening with startups converting old meat markets and warehouses into office spaces and lofts, and a great nightlife and restaurant scene.  Google and McDonalds are driving the corporate expansion as well.

Au Chevalier burgers on Randolph - best in the  city.  Green Street Meats - excellent BBQ.  Stacy Izard is an amazing restauranteur.  Her ‘Girl and the Goat’ - amazing place for dinner.  Reservations needed several weeks in advance or show up at 4:45 for a bar table.  But the food is so good.  Or instead do Stacy’s ‘Little Goat’ diner across Randolph.  You haven’t lived till you’ve had Pork Belly pancakes.  Reservation suggested but easy to do on Open table.


Offline Cochese

  • Posts: 294
    • The 144 Workshop
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #19 on: August 24, 2018, 09:37 AM »

Is that the best Deep Dish in Chicago?

Woodworking displays makes the Art Institute sound more appealing to me.  I also like that it's only about 1/2 a mile from the hotel.

Nope she is not.  She's an accountant.  I'm not sure exactly what courses she's taking.

Not sure. We stayed with someone in Evanston and that was what we got. I thought we might go to Pequods, but Lou's was great.

If you are considering MSI, look at riding Metra down. It was only like $5 or so on the train, and it was very relaxing. Stop is only about three blocks west of the museum. Metra would also get you to Field a little easier, and the MSI stop would get you to Robie House.

Also another vote for the Thorne Rooms at AIC. Route 66's start is right across the street too, as you wait for it to open.

Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #20 on: August 24, 2018, 09:43 AM »
If you go to the Art Institute, make sure you see the Thorne Rooms.  These are a set of 32 miniature rooms that were commissioned by a woman to be built by master craftsmen from 1932 to 1940.  Adobe rooms.  Shaker rooms.  Japanese rooms.  Colonial America rooms.  Really an amazing permanent exhibit on the lower level of the Art Institute. 

http://www.artic.edu/aic/collections/thorne

Definitely do the architecture tour and even the river walk on the lower level on the south side.  Gives you a very different view of Chicago.  There is both a river only and a river and lake tour.  I'd suggest the latter.  Gives you a great view of the city from the lake.  Takes about 90 minutes as I recall.  I was on it a couple of weeks ago and it never gets old.

Both Willis Tower (former Sears Tower) and 360 Chicago (former Hancock Tower) offer top-of-the-city lookouts if you are interested in a view of the lake and surrounding suburbs from 100 stories up.  360 Chicago has a bar/restaurant on top if you want to do lunch or dinner there.

The Museum of Science and Industry is also a great museum about 10 minute cab ride south of the city on Lakeshore Drive.  Much to see there from a coal mine to an amazing train layout and lots of other ways to spend time.

There is currently a very cool art project on display at the Merchandise Mart along the river.  The Mart is one of the largest office buildings in the country - I think 16 stories tall and two city blocks large.  The exhibit is called 'Canstruction' and is an exhibit on the first and second floors of using vegetable cans to create art.  - Free entry and they really have some cool examples of what you can do with stacking cans.  Dinosaurs, Rhinos.  Ducks.  Buildings.  Elevated Trains.   The exhibit is free and open to the public through September 9th 7 days a week.

The Mart is also the home of several design boutiques for furniture, cabinets and plumbing fixtures.  And the upper floors there are where a lot of the startup community gets going in an incubator on the 12th floor called 1871 - The year of the Chicago fire and the rebirth of the city. 

https://canstructionchicago.org is the site.

The exhibit brochure is here:  https://static1.squarespace.com/static/59127a8986e6c038de5757a9/t/5b7c2295f950b7433ce73392/1534861997976/2018+Canstruction+Chicago+Program-DL.pdf

Chicago is a great city.  Much to do and friendly people.  Great food.  Great theater and some of the best architecture in the world.

neil

My wife said she's already been to the Art Institute so that sounds like a great place for me to visit while she's in class.  She's also done the architectural cruise.  She went to Chicago a couple of years ago on a girl's trip without me.

Going to the top of Willis Tower sounds fun, though I am very afraid of heights  [scared].

The Museum of Science and Industry sounds really cool as well.  That would also probably be a good place for me to go by myself.

The Canstruction exhibit reminds me of some of the those displays you see in stores made out of 12 packs of soda (which are amazing to me) only the cans are 3D which is all the more amazing.  Too bad we're going towards the end of the month so I'm going to miss that exhibit.

For getting around, Lyft, Uber, taxis, busses run up and down Michigan Ave. the El for getting  to Wrigley

The Thorne rooms are a must see.

A great debate in the Windy City between Lou Malnati and Gino’s although Malnati’s usually gets the nod. Gino’s East is quite the experience though.

Ron



Cool.  I have both the Uber and Lyft apps.  The El is only used to get to Wrigley?  I thought I might be able to use it to get to some other places but I guess it doesn't go in directions that I want to be heading?

That debate sounds like the great Philly Cheesesteak debate: Pat's vs Geno's.  We tried both and controversially, I liked neither  [blink].

Yes, The Palmer House is the birthplace of the brownie, it was Berta Palmers contribution to the Colombian Exposition.

Pizzeria Uno is the birthplace of Chicago deep dish pizza.

Once you get to the Museum Campus, take your pick...

While we’re dealing with birth[laces, take a ride on the Navy Pier Ferris wheel. Chicago is the birthplace of the Ferris wheel also.

Tom

We're definitely gonna try a brownie from there.

Wow - birthplace of the Ferris Wheel!  That's cool.  The mention of Ferris Wheel just reminded me that Ferris Bueller's Day Off was set in Chicago.

From a foodie to a foodie.... lose the go pro. They’re great for motorcycle shots, but, if you’re real about capturing real life situations, bring the Cannon and just take pictures. I’m a Nikon guy but a lens in the 16-85 range would work well for candid shots. I think it was Ron that suggested Rick Bayless...great suggestion. Great food,

I filmed everything on my GoPro in 4k - I honestly thought it came out quite well, with the exception of low light situations (like most restaurants).  I didn't even mind the slight fish eye effect.  I used to carry a Point and Shoot Nikon camera on trips, but lately I've just been using my phone to take the pictures. 

West Loop has some great restaurants.  It’s West of the Loop across the Interstate.  Lots of gentrification happening with startups converting old meat markets and warehouses into office spaces and lofts, and a great nightlife and restaurant scene.  Google and McDonalds are driving the corporate expansion as well.

Au Chevalier burgers on Randolph - best in the  city.  Green Street Meats - excellent BBQ.  Stacy Izard is an amazing restauranteur.  Her ‘Girl and the Goat’ - amazing place for dinner.  Reservations needed several weeks in advance or show up at 4:45 for a bar table.  But the food is so good.  Or instead do Stacy’s ‘Little Goat’ diner across Randolph.  You haven’t lived till you’ve had Pork Belly pancakes.  Reservation suggested but easy to do on Open table.



Girl and the Goat hmm.  This looks right up our alley.  We're not going for another month so we might still be able to make reservations.  Mmm Pork Belly Pancakes... sounds yummy!

Not sure. We stayed with someone in Evanston and that was what we got. I thought we might go to Pequods, but Lou's was great.

If you are considering MSI, look at riding Metra down. It was only like $5 or so on the train, and it was very relaxing. Stop is only about three blocks west of the museum. Metra would also get you to Field a little easier, and the MSI stop would get you to Robie House.

Also another vote for the Thorne Rooms at AIC. Route 66's start is right across the street too, as you wait for it to open.

Is Metra the same thing as the El?  Oh Robie House - I just looked that up as I had never heard of it before.

The consensus seems to be that everyone really likes Thorne Rooms.



I actually wasn't really looking forward to this trip, but after hearing all these wonderful suggestions I'm really starting to get excited! 

The only couple of minor problems that we also tend to have are:
  • Too many places to eat and not enough days/most importantly not enough stomach capacity to eat this much consecutive food.
  • I think most of these attractions cost money so things will start to add up

Thanks again for all these terrific suggestions!  I've been compiling a list of the recommendations and addresses.  I like to create a little calendar that outlines the itinerary for each day so we can try to be efficient in hitting spots that are geographically close by.  I'll also need to check to see if some places are closed on certain days.
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Online Cheese

  • Posts: 4944
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #21 on: August 24, 2018, 10:12 AM »
I just remembered that besides food, if you're interested in architecture, there are a ton of houses in the Chicago area that Frank Lloyd Wright designed.

http://cal.flwright.org/tours/WACbustour

https://flwright.org/visit/homeandstudio

http://franklloydwrightsites.com/illinois/chicago.html


Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #22 on: August 24, 2018, 10:31 AM »
Good suggestion. Cochese suggested I visit Robie House - after Googling it I learned it was a Frank Lloyd Wright house.  I didn't realize that the Illinois was home to the majority of his structures.
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Offline Holzhacker

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    • www.aic-chicago.com
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #23 on: August 24, 2018, 10:48 AM »
Old world Chicago Steakhouse - Erie Cafe, forget about the others with popular names
Italian - Piccolo Sogno, very nice, Halsted and Grand
Love the Walnut room as a tradition but the food blows these days
Eataly - fun place to visit and buy delicious pasta and stuff to take home, also good food upstairs if you need to eat but don't want to get too involved
Gibsons Italian - haven't been there but lots of people I know swear by it
If you like meat, PQM for lunch
You want a man's lunch, Go to Manny's south loop its a Chicago tradition for good reason, no sissy food
Girl & Goat, so over rated, very interesting diverse food if you like that sort of thing, lots of ingredients and stuff but you need to be into that thing, otherwise its not really worth it
Little Goat - I don't usually say this about a restaurant because I eat out a lot, have worked in restaurants, etc. but that place blows, don't waste your time or money. I think the only reason people go there is for the name or they just don't know what good breakfast food is; and yes I've been there multiple times because other people wanted to
Driehouse Mansion, yes don't miss it for a woodworker
If you wife likes to shop don't forget to take her to Nordstrom rack, State/Washington
The El and Metra are different rail lines. If you aren't urban savvy do NOT take the Redline down to science & industry, take the Metra, Metra line is also closer
You could take the El to woodworld if you wanted to check out some festool and wood
If you like plants and can make the time, Garfield Park Conservatory, you can take the El out to it. Just pay attention while on that line and don't look like a dumb tourist. For a safer but less amazing conservatory go to Lincoln Park.



"The Code is not a ceiling to reach but a floor to work up from"

Offline rvieceli

  • Posts: 821
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2018, 10:48 AM »
The L is part of the Chicago transit authority

Here’s a link to their site.

https://www.transitchicago.com

Metra is a regional commuter train system that goes a bit farther out and about.

https://metrarail.com

There are trip planners on both sites.

Ron

Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #25 on: August 24, 2018, 10:54 AM »
Oh they are two different systems.  Thanks for clearing that up for me.
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Offline GoingMyWay

  • Posts: 619
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #26 on: August 31, 2018, 07:47 PM »
I think we've narrowed it down to 2 or 3 steak houses.  Can anyone recommend one over the other (or another one all together)?

We were thinking:
  • Chicago Cut Steakhouse
  • Michael Jordan Steakhouse
  • Lawry's Prime Rib
We've been to the Lawry's in Vegas so I'm kinda leaning against going to the one in Chicago.

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Offline neilc

  • Posts: 2503
Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #27 on: August 31, 2018, 08:05 PM »
Those are good.   Of those three, I'd choose Chicago Cut.


If you want a slight uptick, check out Bavette's.  It's an excellent choice.  http://bavettessteakhouse.com/chicago/



My favorite for a more diverse menu if you want it is Hugos Frog Bar - next to and owned by Gibsons on Clark with a great menu of both steak and seafood.


Here's a writeup on several including Boefhaus, which is west of the city on Western Ave and a great choice but off the beaten path.


https://www.theinfatuation.com/chicago/guides/the-10-best-steakhouses-in-chicago


Enjoy your time in Chicago!




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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #28 on: September 01, 2018, 12:19 AM »
Just to make your decision more difficult... I’d go to Lawry’s. Been there many times and the food is always delicious. The prime rib is to die for. It was the food at Lawry’s that inspired me to cook prime rib for Christmas festivities.

Very nummy...
« Last Edit: September 01, 2018, 12:24 AM by Cheese »

Offline Holzhacker

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #29 on: September 01, 2018, 12:36 PM »
Lawry's is great for the prime rib and atmosphere. Erie Cafe prime rib is right there with it.
If you want to stay downtown go to Prime & Provision on Wacker over the other ones you listed. Great food, good location and the only place I'm aware of that actually has colossal shrimp anymore. Hard to come by these days.
RPM steak - good food, classy, great drinks, good place to impress someone.
Mastro's - also right downtown, dark, classy, big portions, great steaks and desserts, they have 3 piece Jazz / night club band that plays.
The big name places you name do it well but when you live here you come to realize that places that don't have the big names do it even better.
Jordan's - good average by our standards, isn't impressive if you live here. Chicago Cut - very expensive even by our standards, haven't been there because it seems too much to pay when you compare what is available.
Chicago is a steak town. A place needs to really rock to be better than the crown.
As a steak and pasta option Gibson's Italia.
If you want to make a rockstar choice, re-write your list.
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Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #30 on: September 02, 2018, 12:44 PM »
Those are good.   Of those three, I'd choose Chicago Cut.


If you want a slight uptick, check out Bavette's.  It's an excellent choice.  http://bavettessteakhouse.com/chicago/

Wow Bavette's does seem to have the highest Google rating at 4.8 stars.  It is even pricier than Chicago Cut.

Just to make your decision more difficult... I’d go to Lawry’s. Been there many times and the food is always delicious. The prime rib is to die for. It was the food at Lawry’s that inspired me to cook prime rib for Christmas festivities.

Very nummy...

I've also been to House of Prime Rib in San Francisco and I thought that was better than the Lawry's in Vegas.  Prime rib is now sounding better to me than just a steak, especially since we make steak frequently at home.  Prime rib is usually only once a year at home for Christmas and I don't think it comes out as good as a lot of restaurants.

Lawry's is sounding more and more appealing now!

Lawry's is great for the prime rib and atmosphere. Erie Cafe prime rib is right there with it.
If you want to stay downtown go to Prime & Provision on Wacker over the other ones you listed. Great food, good location and the only place I'm aware of that actually has colossal shrimp anymore. Hard to come by these days.
RPM steak - good food, classy, great drinks, good place to impress someone.
Mastro's - also right downtown, dark, classy, big portions, great steaks and desserts, they have 3 piece Jazz / night club band that plays.
The big name places you name do it well but when you live here you come to realize that places that don't have the big names do it even better.
Jordan's - good average by our standards, isn't impressive if you live here. Chicago Cut - very expensive even by our standards, haven't been there because it seems too much to pay when you compare what is available.
Chicago is a steak town. A place needs to really rock to be better than the crown.
As a steak and pasta option Gibson's Italia.
If you want to make a rockstar choice, re-write your list.

Thanks for the new recommendations.

I didn't really realize how many steakhouses there were, all so close by until I started looking on Google Maps!  Prime & Provisions does sound pretty good.  The menu says the prime rib has limited availability - I wonder just how limited that is.  I guess Michael Jordan Steakhouse is mostly known just for his name more so than the steaks.

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Offline tjbnwi

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #31 on: September 02, 2018, 12:54 PM »
Just don’t go to Philadelphia......

Tom

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #32 on: September 02, 2018, 12:55 PM »
You mean in terms of steakhouses?  We went to Philly back in January.
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Offline tjbnwi

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #33 on: September 02, 2018, 12:58 PM »
You mean in terms of steakhouses?  We went to Philly back in January.

In terms of the city. Except for the history, I can find no redeeming qualities about it.

Maybe I’m just spoiled be downtown Chicago.

Tom

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #34 on: September 02, 2018, 01:02 PM »
Oh I see.  This was our second time going to Philly.  Reading Terminal Market was probably our favorite part both trips.
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Offline tjbnwi

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #35 on: September 02, 2018, 01:07 PM »
Oh I see.  This was our second time going to Philly.  Reading Terminal Market was probably our favorite part both trips.

The market is right across the street from the hotel I’m sitting in. By the way, this is the worst hotel in this chain I’ve ever been to.

I’m sitting here at 1 PM on a Sunday, playing on the internet...that has to tell you something.

Tom

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #36 on: September 02, 2018, 01:14 PM »
It is too bad that a lot of the vendors in Reading Terminal Market are closed on Sundays.

We stayed at the Marriott that was pretty much right across the street from Reading Terminal Market.  That hotel seemed fine to me so you must be staying at another hotel brand.  I don't recall what other hotels were nearby.
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Offline tjbnwi

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #37 on: September 02, 2018, 01:31 PM »
It is too bad that a lot of the vendors in Reading Terminal Market are closed on Sundays.

We stayed at the Marriott that was pretty much right across the street from Reading Terminal Market.  That hotel seemed fine to me so you must be staying at another hotel brand.  I don't recall what other hotels were nearby.

Same Marriot.

Tom

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #38 on: September 02, 2018, 05:53 PM »
Oh that's too bad.  I thought that Marriott was fine, just like most other Marriott's.  Anything in particular that you didn't like?

We're gonna be staying at a Hyatt property and an IHG property in Chicago.
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Offline tjbnwi

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #39 on: September 02, 2018, 09:22 PM »
Oh that's too bad.  I thought that Marriott was fine, just like most other Marriott's.  Anything in particular that you didn't like?

We're gonna be staying at a Hyatt property and an IHG property in Chicago.

Service is not that great. We had 25 rooms for 3 nights each, only one was configured properly. 

Staff was not friendly or helpful.

Housekeeping is fair at best.

Breakfast at 13 was uneatable after waiting an hour.

One of the group was told no room was available for them they overbooked. All these rooms were reserved 4 months ago and paid for.

It took a call to corporate to get some of the things straightened out.  Not how a hotel should treat a Platimium Elite member.

Other than that, we’re good.....

Tom



Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #40 on: September 03, 2018, 10:39 AM »
That's too bad.  I guess doing a room block like that comes with its own problems.
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Offline Bob D.

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #41 on: September 04, 2018, 07:41 AM »
Don't know how much time you have to 'kill' while the wife is in her classes but Festool HQ in Lebanon, IN is not that far away is it? Looks like about 150 miles and a 2.5 hour drive.

Don't know what traffic is like in the area but it looks like you could easily get there and back in a day and have a few hours to see and smell the new tools and maybe take a tour.
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Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #42 on: September 04, 2018, 09:17 AM »
That's a nice thought, but a 2.5 hour drive is a bit too far for me especially since we're not getting a rental car.
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Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #43 on: September 24, 2018, 03:11 PM »
Thanks again for all the great suggestions for Chicago.  I'm back now and just getting caught back up with everything.  We bought the CityPass since it seemed like the cheapest way.  We ended up going the following places:

  • Lou Malnati's (we just shared a personal pizza for 1 because we didn't want to get too stuffed eating a pizza.  My wife didn't like how hard the crust was.  We definitely prefer NY thin crust style pizza)
  • Museum of Science and Technology (there was free admission on Sunday so we took advantage of the deal.  This was a very cool Museum - I didn't know the submarine was real at first.)
  • Gyu-Kaku (Japanese BBQ - we prefer Korean BBQ, but it was fun to try)
  • Chinatown (doesn't really compare to Chinatown in SFO or NYC, but the restaurant we went to for dim sum was completely full at like 10:30am.  We were shocked that it was that crowded.  Dim sum was pretty good too)
  • Adler Planetarium (not really that much to see here.  We did the night sky show where they showed us some things you can see in the night sky)
  • Field Museum (I really enjoyed the different tree displays showing what the bark, leaves, and grain looks like)
  • Shedd Aquarium (pretty small aquarium.  The beluga whales were very friendly and they did have a lot of fish to see.)
  • Eataly (cool place, I have never seen that many italian products in one place before.  The food we ordered in the seafood restaurant was also good, albeit expensive)
  • Dapper Donut
  • Willis Tower (I guess we kinda went in the off season which is a good thing because I had feared a 2 hour wait.  It was very fast to get up to the top and also to the Skydeck itself.)
  • Gold Coast Hot Dogs (pretty good dogs, literally like 1 or 2 blocks from our hotel so it was super convenient and cheap.  We got a steamed and a charred dog.  Surprisingly I think I slightly preferred the charred dog)
  • Millennium Park
  • Frontera Grill (good service but we found the dishes to be a little bit salty.)
  • Wildberry Pancakes and Cafe (of the 3 breakfasts I had by myself, this was the best one)
  • International Museum of Surgical Science (neat little museum and I have nothing to do with the healthcare profession)
  • Chicago History Museum (Tthere was an interesting exhibit on the MLK and the Jazz exhibit was also cool)
  • Navy Pier (pretty underwhelming.  We didn't end up going on the Ferris wheel - my wife thought it was a waste of money)
  • 360 Chicago (we went when there was very poor visibility, at least it was quick getting up to the top.  They were playing the Modern Marvels episode on the John Hancock building, which I found to be absolutely fascinating)
  • Sushi-San (pricey, but some of the best sushi that I've had outside of Japan)
  • Three Dots and Dash (very cool speakeasy/polynesian type of place.)
  • Palmer House (brownie was pretty good - hotel was a mess because of the hotel worker strike)
  • Eggsperience
  • Beginning of Route 66 Sign
  • Art Institute of Chicago (I had no idea the famous American Gothic painting was here.  That was really cool to see.  I got there right when it opened so it wasn't too crowded.  The Thorne Miniature Rooms was really cool also.)
  • Ramen-San (not bad, the ramen broth was on the salty side)
  • Lincoln Park Zoo (small zoo, but it was also very empty so it almost felt like we had the whole place to ourselves.  Seemed like the animals knew when we walked up to each exhibit as they almost always made an appearance for us to see them.)
  • The Berghoff (very good food and reasonable prices - I'd say the best meal and value of the whole trip)
  • Yolk!
  • Pritzker Military Museum and Library (more library than museum, but I mainly went to kill some time as it was my last morning there)
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Online Cheese

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #44 on: September 26, 2018, 10:29 AM »
Wow...busy guy. Maybe you should change your name from GoingMyWay to GoingAllDayEveryDay. [big grin]

Curious, did the Gold Coast Hot Dogs have this green relish on them?

Nice to hear about the Eataly thing. [smile]

I notice you mention that a lot of the meals were salty, what kind of salt do you cook with at home?  I switched from regular table salt to Kosher salt about 20 years ago and much prefer cooking with that. I also notice that when we go out for dinner some of the meals seem on the salty side.

I recently started trying sea salt and we'll see where that goes...it is expensive though.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2018, 10:41 AM by Cheese »

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #45 on: September 26, 2018, 10:55 AM »
Wow...busy guy. Maybe you should change your name from GoingMyWay to GoingAllDayEveryDay. [big grin]

Nice to hear about the Eataly thing. [smile]

I notice you mention that a lot of the meals were salty, what kind of salt do you cook with at home?  I switched from regular table salt to Kosher salt about 20 years ago and much prefer cooking with that. I also notice that when we go out for dinner some of the meals seem on the salty side.

I recently started trying sea salt and we'll see where that goes...it is expensive though.


    I have been to Eataly in NYC. I didn't realize that it was a chain. Cool place , lots of good stuff.

    I have been using sea salt for years now. General purpose , run of the mill sea salt should be obtainable at a pretty low price unless shopping for particular type , style etc. What I get for cooking is only a few dollars a pound.  What I like about it is that it has a a more salty taste in proportion to the  "burning" effect of regular salt. More mellow.

Seth

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #46 on: September 26, 2018, 11:15 AM »
Wow...busy guy. Maybe you should change your name from GoingMyWay to GoingAllDayEveryDay. [big grin]

Curious, did the Gold Coast Hot Dogs have this green relish on them? (Attachment Link)

Nice to hear about the Eataly thing. [smile]

I notice you mention that a lot of the meals were salty, what kind of salt do you cook with at home?  I switched from regular table salt to Kosher salt about 20 years ago and much prefer cooking with that. I also notice that when we go out for dinner some of the meals seem on the salty side.

I recently started trying sea salt and we'll see where that goes...it is expensive though.
LOL - I like to hit a lot of places in a hurry.  I'm always in a hurry, even when we're not even sure where we are going.  I also don't spend a lot of time reading every exhibit.

It sure did.  It's a little hard to see in this photo.



I thought that neon green relish was a requirement for a Chicago Dog.  I also got the impression that most places that serve Chicago Style Dogs use the Vienna brand of products - if that's the case there likely isn't that much of a difference between hot dog places if they're all using the same product.

I opted to not take my GoPro since it would be extra weight and items to carry.  I just used my phone to take pictures.  I took a bunch of pictures of everything - too many to post here.  I could post some selective ones, if anyone wanted to see anything in particular (not likely anyone is really interested in my trip or my mediocre photography).  I am planning on posting some of the pictures from Eately in the What's Cooking thread since that was specifically talked about.

We use regular Morton's table salt (we alternate between iodized and non iodized), Morton's kosher salt, and Maldon's Sea Salt.  Just this past week we tried the smoked Maldon's Sea Salt.  The Maldons is really only supposed to be used as a "finishing salt" but we often use it as you'd use regular salt in terms of general seasoning.

It's kind of funny - a lot of times I'm complaining about foods being underseasoned.  On this particular trip we seemed to encounter a lot of salty food.  I was really complaining in the airport lounge that everything there was salty - the soups, the olives, the 2 different snack mixes.  I really try to restrict my liquid intake when I'm about to get on a plane so salty foods that will make me thirst is the last thing that I need.

    I have been to Eataly in NYC. I didn't realize that it was a chain. Cool place , lots of good stuff.

    I have been using sea salt for years now. General purpose , run of the mill sea salt should be obtainable at a pretty low price unless shopping for particular type , style etc. What I get for cooking is only a few dollars a pound.  What I like about it is that it has a a more salty taste in proportion to the  "burning" effect of regular salt. More mellow.

Seth

I just looked it up.  Looks like there are locations in LA, Chicago, NYC (2 locations), Boston, and soon Vegas. They're all over the place!

I don't necessarily notice much of a difference in taste of the salt.  As I mentioned, we alternate between iodized and non iodized salt.  I think a lot of people don't like the iodized version because of the flavor it can impart.  I haven't noticed any off taste.
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Online Cheese

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #47 on: September 26, 2018, 11:27 AM »
I have been to Eataly in NYC. I didn't realize that it was a chain. Cool place , lots of good stuff.

I have been using sea salt for years now. General purpose , run of the mill sea salt should be obtainable at a pretty low price unless shopping for particular type , style etc. What I get for cooking is only a few dollars a pound.  What I like about it is that it has a a more salty taste in proportion to the  "burning" effect of regular salt. More mellow.

Five of them (Eataly) if I remember correctly.

Or local store only carries Baleine and Maldon. The blue version is very fine like regular table salt and the red version is very coarse like rock salt. After 20 years I'm so used to seasoning with Kosher salt that neither one of the Baleine products worked for me, you know a pinch here a pinch there.

That's when I tried Maldon which is closer in consistency to Kosher salt. The local store sells Maldon for 8 oz @ $9. That's $18 per pound...that's Copper River salmon territory.  [eek]
« Last Edit: September 26, 2018, 11:37 AM by Cheese »

Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #48 on: September 26, 2018, 12:08 PM »
You can get a 3.3lb tub of Maldon salt on Amazon for $8.83/lb: https://www.amazon.com/Maldon-Salt-Flakes-1-5kg-3-3lbs/dp/B004SBQYMU/ref=sr_1_2_a_it.
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Offline GoingMyWay

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Re: Visiting Chicago
« Reply #50 on: October 04, 2018, 11:01 AM »
Wow I never thought about variances between 2 different brands of kosher salt. We've only used Morton's, but it seems like most every other recipe has Diamond kosher salt in mind when they write the recipe.

I wonder if we should buy some Diamond kosher salt for comparison.

I also didn't know that kosher salt was a misnomer. I always assumed it was kosher given its name.
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