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#61 SarahZ

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 07:49 PM

Speaking of Bridgeport, Pancho Pistola's (on 31st) has good Mexican food and friendly service.

They might be a bit too far south for the average tourist's comfort level, but I always enjoyed eating there when visiting friends on the south side.

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#62 trainman74

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 06:17 PM

Speaking of Bridgeport, Pancho Pistola's (on 31st) has good Mexican food and friendly service.

They might be a bit too far south for the average tourist's comfort level, but I always enjoyed eating there when visiting friends on the south side.


Then I guess I should also add a plug for Pleasant House Pub, which is run by a friend from college and her husband. They serve British pub food, most notably meat pies, which are delicious.

It's in the Pilsen neighborhood on Halsted, a block north of Cermak. It would actually be fairly quick and easy to get there via public transportation (or Uber/Lyft) from Union Station, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for people who are on an Amtrak layover and otherwise unfamiliar with Chicago.

#63 SarahZ

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Posted 14 August 2017 - 08:53 PM

It would actually be fairly quick and easy to get there via public transportation (or Uber/Lyft) from Union Station, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for people who are on an Amtrak layover and otherwise unfamiliar with Chicago.

 

 

That's my issue every time one of these threads comes up. I can think of tons of wonderful restaurants in all sorts of interesting neighborhoods, but I know people who've never been to Chicago might be hesitant about wandering more than a few blocks from Union Station.  :mellow:


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Amtrak Routes: Blue Water, California Zephyr, Capitol Limited, Carl Sandburg, City of New Orleans, Coast Starlight, Crescent, Empire Builder, Hiawatha, Illinois Zephyr, Lincoln Service, Southwest Chief, Texas Eagle, Wolverine

 

Metropolitan Rail: Chicago Metra, Chicago L, Dallas TRE, Detroit People Mover, New Orleans RTA, San Francisco MUNI, Seattle Monorail, South Shore Line (NICTD), Toronto Subway & RT, Washington DC Metro


#64 PVD

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 08:46 AM

I have a simple solution, just get to Chicago the same days I do...It will be a) raining  b) snowing or c) so cold and windy you don't want to go out. I'll be going through again the first week in November, hoping for better luck this time, so much great stuff there to see and do as well as the food scene.....



#65 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 12:26 PM

Now that you have all picked the perfect pizza, it's time for breakfast. (For me, it's always time for breakfast! :))

 

Any suggestions for good breakfast places on the other side of the river (North Loop, surrounding area) from Lou Mitchells that are similar--good breakfast, decent prices, and not trendy but not a hole in the wall, either? Or will I be crossing the river to Lou Mitchells every day for my poached eggs and hash browns? :P



#66 MisterUptempo

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 02:11 PM

Now that you have all picked the perfect pizza, it's time for breakfast. (For me, it's always time for breakfast! :))

 

Any suggestions for good breakfast places on the other side of the river (North Loop, surrounding area) from Lou Mitchells that are similar--good breakfast, decent prices, and not trendy but not a hole in the wall, either? Or will I be crossing the river to Lou Mitchells every day for my poached eggs and hash browns? :P

Not too far out of your way - Wildberry Cafe, at the Prudential Building.



#67 SarahZ

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 02:44 PM

Yolk! The servings are huge. They have a few locations in the Loop.

Eggy's is good too. They're near Randolph & Columbus (just east of Michigan).

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Metropolitan Rail: Chicago Metra, Chicago L, Dallas TRE, Detroit People Mover, New Orleans RTA, San Francisco MUNI, Seattle Monorail, South Shore Line (NICTD), Toronto Subway & RT, Washington DC Metro


#68 SarahZ

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Posted 16 August 2017 - 05:23 PM

If you want a delicious cinnamon roll that's as big as your head, go to Ann Sather.

The Belmont location is the closest one to you. It's about half a block east of the Red/Brown/Purple Line stop at Belmont.

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#69 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 11:31 AM

Thank you, MisterUpTempo and SarahZ,

 

I looked up Wildberry, Yolk, and Eggys, and they all look good (and easily walkable from where I'll be staying). If I am lucky, I'll be able to fit in all three, plus maybe Lou Mitchells for lunch instead of breakfast (before the EB west, perhaps, or the Card. coming back east).

 

I love cinnamon rolls, too, but not sure I'll fit them in--that's also a Philly specialty, so I have that temptation very close to home! :P



#70 dlagrua

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 02:09 PM

What makes the most sense to us is to walk over going West 3 blocks from CUS on Jackson to So. Halstead street in the area called Greektown. Make a right on So Halstead and walk north. Some very good restaurants there and a supermarket with a food court called Mariano's. If that doesn't do it for you  a few blocks No on Halstead to S Clinton is where the French Market is. Its about an 8 block walk one way from CUS to the French Market but you can always take a short cab ride back. Lots of great food choices in CHI even for the most discriminating Connoisseur.


Edited by dlagrua, 21 August 2017 - 02:09 PM.


#71 Manny T

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:52 AM

As a Chicago native, I'm happy to report Bon Appetit named Chicago "Restaurant City of the Year" for 2017. The subtitle of their article is, "If you're coming to Chicago for deep dish, well, you have to try harder."

http://www.bonappeti...f-the-year-2017

 

So yes I find it amusing that people will get off a LD train, where they've been treated to Amtrak cuisine for days, and not do their research and find someplace decent to eat -- if they have the time and inclination. That's why I think threads like this are great, and hope people will make good recommendations.

 

#72 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 08:45 AM

I agree with Manny T, and I have another category for you--I got the Chicago tourist magazine, and it has an article on open-air rooftop restaurants, but just lists a few, and they all look expensive! (Most are on top of hotels.) Anyone have any favorite rooftop restaurants, or (even better) rooftop places for just coffee and pastries, they would like to share? :)


Edited by Mystic River Dragon, 24 August 2017 - 09:09 AM.


#73 MisterUptempo

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 08:05 PM

I agree with Manny T, and I have another category for you--I got the Chicago tourist magazine, and it has an article on open-air rooftop restaurants, but just lists a few, and they all look expensive! (Most are on top of hotels.) Anyone have any favorite rooftop restaurants, or (even better) rooftop places for just coffee and pastries, they would like to share? :)

I've only been on three rooftop establishments downtown - bars that serve food.

 

1) Rooftop at the London House Hotel. Located at Michigan and Wacker Drive. The views are the best. You can see all along the river canyon as well as Michigan Avenue. Also check out the rest of the hotel while you are there. Used as an office building nearly its entire existence. Became a hotel only last year, I believe.

 

It kills me that while the hotel was named after the London House, a dinner club/jazz club that occupied the first floor for years, and was home to many classic jazz recordings of the 50s and 60s, they didn't actually open a jazz club anywhere on the property. Lost opportunity.

 

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2) The top of the Chicago Athletic Association hotel. Another new hotel conversion project. The whole place is gorgeous. Located on Michigan Ave., between Madison and Monroe. Overlooks Millennium Park and the lake, another priceless view.

 

3) The top of the Wit Hotel at State and Lake. Very nice bar as well. Hotel is fine, nothing special. View is nice, but somewhat limited.

 

All three places have the following in common-

 

1) They are all fairly expensive.

 

2) When I went to these places (each time on a different Saturday night), I had to wait to get in. That might not be the case if you went on a weeknight or earlier in the day. I'm not sure.

 

3)Let me preface my next point by saying that it could be me as much as anything...but...all three places had a sort of...hmmmm...trust fund kiddie, Big Ten fratbro vibe to them. Could be the time I went. Again, it could be me. Just putting that out there.

 

Of the three, London House had the best view. The Athletic Assn. was the nicest place, the Wit was fine, but nothing to get too excited about.


Edited by MisterUptempo, 24 August 2017 - 08:09 PM.


#74 SarahZ

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Posted 24 August 2017 - 08:56 PM

3) Let me preface my next point by saying that it could be me as much as anything...but...all three places had a sort of...hmmmm...trust fund kiddie, Big Ten fratbro vibe to them. Could be the time I went. Again, it could be me. Just putting that out there.

 

 

It's not just you. Perhaps it's better on weeknights during autumn.  *fingers crossed*

 

I agree that the London House has the best view, but man... the Chicago Athletic Association is just GORGEOUS.

 

Still, if I'm going to plunk down money for a rooftop dinner, the London House is well worth it.

 

Speaking of autumn, Mystic, I'd definitely wear something warm if you're going to dine at one of those places. They're all close to the lake, and it can get pretty windy and cold at night when you're up that high.


Edited by SarahZ, 24 August 2017 - 08:57 PM.

Amtrak Miles: 39,318

 

Amtrak Routes: Blue Water, California Zephyr, Capitol Limited, Carl Sandburg, City of New Orleans, Coast Starlight, Crescent, Empire Builder, Hiawatha, Illinois Zephyr, Lincoln Service, Southwest Chief, Texas Eagle, Wolverine

 

Metropolitan Rail: Chicago Metra, Chicago L, Dallas TRE, Detroit People Mover, New Orleans RTA, San Francisco MUNI, Seattle Monorail, South Shore Line (NICTD), Toronto Subway & RT, Washington DC Metro


#75 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 25 August 2017 - 07:46 AM

These sound like lovely views, and I will definitely go to the Chicago Athletic Association just to see the building (London House was in the article, and the rooftop picture was what started me thinking about it), but way out of my price range, to say nothing of definitely not my crowd. Plus I do not want to get blown into the Lake and miss the Gathering! Now what would be really ideal is a great breakfast place on a rooftop....oh well, can't have everything! :P

 

Perhaps I can act like I'm lost and wander out on the rooftop to see the view before they catch me at it...."Oh, I'm so sorry--I didn't realize this was a restaurant--I thought I was on the top of the Willis Tower....but what a lovely view you have here!" :P



#76 NorthShore

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 03:12 PM

 
It kills me that while the hotel was named after the London House, a dinner club/jazz club that occupied the first floor for years, and was home to many classic jazz recordings of the 50s and 60s, they didn't actually open a jazz club anywhere on the property. Lost opportunity.
 


They do, however, regularly host small jazz groups on the rooftop and in the lobby.

Edited by NorthShore, 29 August 2017 - 03:13 PM.


#77 NorthShore

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 03:21 PM

Many of the best breakfast places are in the neighborhoods. Some even have sidewalk cafe service.

#78 RSG

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 04:45 PM

 

3) Let me preface my next point by saying that it could be me as much as anything...but...all three places had a sort of...hmmmm...trust fund kiddie, Big Ten fratbro vibe to them. Could be the time I went. Again, it could be me. Just putting that out there.

 
It's not just you. Perhaps it's better on weeknights during autumn.  *fingers crossed*
 
I agree that the London House has the best view, but man... the Chicago Athletic Association is just GORGEOUS.

 


I was at a reception held at the Chicago Athletic Association in June. I will third it as a place to visit to see what they've done with the place. It rates up there with Palmer House, et al, as an example of "what it used to be like". But I found the layout confusing. I first took one of the public accessible elevators up to what I thought was the event space, and shared the elevator with one of the above described types and his female companion who were going to one of the bars, which I found was the only location that the elevator went to. I then returned immediately to the lobby and wandered around trying to figure out how to get upstairs (even by using the staircase I had seen on the bar level) when I noticed fellow attendees wander in and who got the bouncer/host for the restaurant to use the mandatory keycard to allow elevator access to the function spaces.

 

Later during my stay, when I searched for late night dining spots, the restaurant there (whose name escapes me at the moment) always popped up on the list. But that was the restaurant that everyone was queued in line for when I visited, with most of the women ("chickadees", as a female friend would call them) in cocktail dresses. As a solo visitor, I found the 'scene' very intimidating (but less so than if I were of the age group of most of the clientele that night).

 

Suggestion: visit in the afternoon or on an off night (I'm guessing that would be Monday or Tuesday) when the hordes of young beautiful people with too much money are not out to see and be seen.



#79 Mystic River Dragon

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 08:07 AM

I forgot all about the Palmer House--I would like to see that lobby. Whatever I do, it will definitely be lunch on a weekday--I'm not a night person and would never go out at night by myself anyway.

 

I found another place all by myself :): the Walnut Room at Macy's--I am hoping to have one lunch there. I am old enough to just vaguely remember the lovely restaurants in department stores and was so sad when most of them disappeared.

 

There's so much to look at that, after I find the Tribune Tower, which I don't want to miss, I may just wander and look at whatever I come across.



#80 MisterUptempo

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 12:12 AM

The Walnut Room is very nice. Many memories of going there growing up, when it was still Marshall Field and Co.. At Christmastime, we'd head over to the Walnut Room after visiting Santa at the Cozy Cloud Cottage. Usually ordered the chicken pot pie. My parents and I carried on that tradition with our nieces, and I hope it's still there when they have families.

 

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img src - flickr.com

 

While you're at Macy's, ask an employee to direct you to the Tiffany Dome, which sits high above a large atrium.

 

jOUc7Rw.jpg

img src - flickr.com

 

You mentioned you are visiting during autumn. If you're here on October 14 & 15 (Saturday and Sunday), The Chicago Architecture Foundation is presenting "Open House Chicago", in which many of the city's more architecturally unique buildings will be open to explore. It happens in many neighborhoods around town, but the largest group of open buildings will be in the downtown area. It's free. More info is available at the following URL - https://openhousechicago.org/

 

If you won't be in town for "Open House Chicago", The Chicago Architectural Foundation has guided tours all year long, though a fee is charged. The link to the available CAF tours is as follows - https://www.architec...ence-caf/tours/

 

You also mentioned that you are staying at the Hilton Garden Inn at 66 E. Wacker Pl., correct? If you get just a minute or two spare, maybe while waiting for a cab/uber, just stick your head inside the Hampton Inn hotel, which is the building immediately to the east of yours, 68 E. Wacker Pl.. It is yet another converted office building. It served as the home of the Chicago Motor Club for many years, and is a very fine example of Art Deco. The lobby/lounge has a great map of the United States, just above the elevator bank. I wouldn't suggest going out of your way to see it, but since you will be staying right next door, it's worth a moment of your time.

 

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img src - urbanremainschicago.com


Edited by MisterUptempo, 13 September 2017 - 12:21 AM.





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