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Building an Itinerary in May...

Building an Itinerary in May...
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  • Building an Itinerary in May...

    Post #1 - March 29th, 2007, 5:17 pm
    Post #1 - March 29th, 2007, 5:17 pm Post #1 - March 29th, 2007, 5:17 pm
    My wife has a conference in May, so we're going to come out from the 6th to the 10th (flying back early the 10th). Her conference is the 8th and 9th. I should have encouraged her to get us there early enough for the Maxwell Street Market (I assume it's on in May?). Perhaps we can still make it in time. I'll have to look.

    Anyway, I've been charged with showing her around the 6th & 7th. Probably hit a lot of the standard sites: art museums, Field Museum, big ass buildings, mag mile, etc, along with some neighborhoods. Recommended itineraries ALWAYS appreciated. I'm certainly no expert on Chicago, nor its tourist attractions. (Though I'll make every effort to try to act like one after my next trip.) As an excuse to get to certain eateries or eating neighborhoods would even be better.

    The 8th & 9th I'll be on my own during the day. Almost certainly will want to get to Devon. (My wife doesn't really like Indian food.) Will definitely be looking to hook up with LTHers for eating of mass quantities.

    I was thinking for dinners I might try to do Alinea and Moto, assuming I can even still get a reservation for Alinea. I've never tried and I don't know how ridiculous that prospect is. I've never been to any of the molecular gastronomy places. Closest would be Trotters and French Laundry. And we have nothing like them out west.

    Other than that, I don't know how interested I am in fine dining. I know Chicago has great fine dining, but fine dining is everywhere. I think I might be more interested in the ethnic and regional foods that I can only get in Chicago or am much more likely to find in Chicago. That Yucatecan place, eg, is intriguing. Thai guided by Erik's adept palate is of course always appreciated.

    But I'm looking for suggestions of all kinds. Build me a list of must-eats and must-sees. Tell me what to do. I may or may not listen, but I'll feel much better about my choices the more info I have.

    For reference, here a couple of my previous trips to Chicago:

    http://www.extramsg.com/modules.php?nam ... w_topic=80

    PS: I'm thinking of staying here the two days we're not at the conference (somewhere in the loop, I think). Is this too far north to be useful? Seems like a great value:

    http://www.lpndaysinn.com/
  • Post #2 - March 29th, 2007, 5:30 pm
    Post #2 - March 29th, 2007, 5:30 pm Post #2 - March 29th, 2007, 5:30 pm
    That Days Inn is a great location - center of Lincoln Park, a couple of blocks from Old Town and Second City - I used to live near there, when it was called Hotel Lincoln (it was a bit seedy back then, but it's been cleaned up). Downside is that's it's not especially close to the El, but there are plenty of buses.
  • Post #3 - March 29th, 2007, 5:37 pm
    Post #3 - March 29th, 2007, 5:37 pm Post #3 - March 29th, 2007, 5:37 pm
    While Alinea gets all the acclaim, you can have an extraordinary culinary experience at any of our top tables - Alinea, Avenues, Everest, Tru, Charlie Trotter's, NoMi, Moto, Schwa, Spiaggia, etc. And the prices vary quite a bit among that group (from the $50 three-course pre-theater dinner at Everest to $195 for the full tour at Alinea, with everything in between). Also don't ignore the "casual fine dining" places like One Sixty Blue, Aigre Doux, Naha, Avec, Blackbird, mk, etc., where you can get wonderful food for a lot less money than the big boys.

    You'll still have an excellent chance of booking our top restaurants (including Alinea) this far out. It's not like the French Laundry where your chances of getting through on their phone line during the hour they accept reservations for your date are only slightly better than winning the lottery. Especially if you're just a little bit flexible with the time of your reservation. Check on opentable.com (which accepts reservations for six of the nine places I first mention above) and you'll see what I mean.

    The location of the Lincoln Park Days Inn is perfect for getting around town - close to the places in Lincoln Park and Lakeview, and a quick ride by cab, el, or bus to the places in all the downtown areas as well as Bucktown/Wicker Park.

    Allow an hour to poke around Millennium Park when you visit the Art Institute.
  • Post #4 - March 29th, 2007, 6:59 pm
    Post #4 - March 29th, 2007, 6:59 pm Post #4 - March 29th, 2007, 6:59 pm
    Maxwell Street is open every Sunday of the year from around 7:00 until around 3:00.

    At this point, reservations at Alinea might be challenging (bookings in May opened at the beginning of March), but you might still be able to get a random weekday night.

    Hope we can meet for an LTH dinner.
    “Nobody exists on purpose. Nobody belongs anywhere. Everybody’s gonna die. Come watch TV?”
  • Post #5 - March 30th, 2007, 4:17 pm
    Post #5 - March 30th, 2007, 4:17 pm Post #5 - March 30th, 2007, 4:17 pm
    extramsg wrote:I was thinking for dinners I might try to do Alinea and Moto, assuming I can even still get a reservation for Alinea. I've never tried and I don't know how ridiculous that prospect is. I've never been to any of the molecular gastronomy places. Closest would be Trotters and French Laundry. And we have nothing like them out west.


    It's worth calling Alinea to see if you can get a reservation. We ate there just before moving - it was a last-minute decision, and we were able to get a table pretty easily - called on Tuesday and got a table on Wednesday (I think.) The fact that it was mid-week probably helped.

    If you are going to be around Devon, check out La Unica There's certainly (from what I can tell) nowhere like it in Portland. It's pretty basic, but very good.
  • Post #6 - March 30th, 2007, 4:30 pm
    Post #6 - March 30th, 2007, 4:30 pm Post #6 - March 30th, 2007, 4:30 pm
    Thanks LionRock. Erik actually took me to La Unica on a previous visit. I imagine I would be better situated to appreciate it, though, now. Got my Guarana fix, though. Yeah, I should call Alinea now. Dialing while I type...

    btw, it looks like I misunderstood when we were leaving. We won't get in (Midway) until 7pm Sunday night, unfortunately. Kind of a waste of a day. So one thing that might be a bit of a pickle is getting something good at around 9pm Sunday night. Assuming no one has a better suggestion than the Lincoln Park Days Inn, somewhere within an easy cab ride of there or walking distance, would be preferred.
  • Post #7 - March 30th, 2007, 4:38 pm
    Post #7 - March 30th, 2007, 4:38 pm Post #7 - March 30th, 2007, 4:38 pm
    Okay, so I got a reservation for Wednesday, May 9th at Alinea. I hate the idea of having to wear (and pack) a jacket, but at least there's no tie requirement. (Ah, the wonderful PNW, where I can wear shorts and sandals to any restaurant....)

    This means I really need to diet so I can feel comfortable in a jacket.
  • Post #8 - March 30th, 2007, 4:39 pm
    Post #8 - March 30th, 2007, 4:39 pm Post #8 - March 30th, 2007, 4:39 pm
    How about just conveniently "losing" your suitcase that just happened to have your jacket? I can't imagine Alinea cares that much about decorum that they'll turn you away :)
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #9 - March 30th, 2007, 5:52 pm
    Post #9 - March 30th, 2007, 5:52 pm Post #9 - March 30th, 2007, 5:52 pm
    extramsg wrote:So one thing that might be a bit of a pickle is getting something good at around 9pm Sunday night. Assuming no one has a better suggestion than the Lincoln Park Days Inn, somewhere within an easy cab ride of there or walking distance, would be preferred.

    If you want a truly excellent meal, going at 9 pm on a Sunday evening is not a major impediment.

    This is the kind of question where OpenTable is very handy. Remember, OpenTable doesn't list every place in town, and for the places listed, there may be additional space at hours shown there as not available. But enough places are listed that it's a great way to find out what's open, especially when checking for reservations at somewhat odd days/hours.

    I just tried that Sunday evening May 6 for a 9:30 pm reservation at any place in either Lakeview or Lincoln Park, and it gives me seven possibilities, most of which happen to be pretty darn good:

    Café Ba-Ba-Reeba
    Geja's Café
    Goose Island Brewery
    Mon Ami Gabi
    Sapori Trattoria
    Vinci
    X/O

    Note that 9:00 is the last reservation Mon Ami Gabi accepts on Sunday evenings, while the others are open later.

    Eleven other places did not appear in the list as available, mostly because they just don't take reservations quite this far in advance. Four of them are quite good and worth considering also:

    Merlo
    North Pond
    Sola
    Sweets and Savories

    I particularly recommend the ones for which I have made links to their websites; the first three are bistro and "small plates" places that might be more suitable for a late arrival, and the last three are among Chicago's better restaurants in what I like to call the "casual fine dining" category. And again, all of these are right in the Lakeview and Lincoln Park neighborhoods.
    Last edited by nsxtasy on March 30th, 2007, 9:39 pm, edited 3 times in total.
  • Post #10 - March 30th, 2007, 8:53 pm
    Post #10 - March 30th, 2007, 8:53 pm Post #10 - March 30th, 2007, 8:53 pm
    extramsg wrote:btw, it looks like I misunderstood when we were leaving. We won't get in (Midway) until 7pm Sunday night, unfortunately. Kind of a waste of a day. So one thing that might be a bit of a pickle is getting something good at around 9pm Sunday night. Assuming no one has a better suggestion than the Lincoln Park Days Inn, somewhere within an easy cab ride of there or walking distance, would be preferred.


    There's a lot of places near there; Hammond recently "rediscovered" Yoshi's, and the ensuing thread led to a lot of people saying "yeah, there's all these places we forget that we love." (I can't speak from much experience myself.)

    I'm not sure if any are really distinctively "Chicago" or "not-Portland," but they still may be interesting, and they're within easy cab-shot.
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #11 - April 3rd, 2007, 12:23 am
    Post #11 - April 3rd, 2007, 12:23 am Post #11 - April 3rd, 2007, 12:23 am
    How about just conveniently "losing" your suitcase that just happened to have your jacket? I can't imagine Alinea cares that much about decorum that they'll turn you away


    I'm thinking of going with the classic tuxedo t-shirt. They didn't say anything about shorts....

    Got a reservation at Moto today for Thursday evening via OpenTable. So there are my two upscale places for the week. I wish they gave my wife a better per diem. They don't even vary it for location, from what I understand. I'd hate to go to London or NY on $40/day.

    Are any of the delis in Chicago worth my time? Do they compare to Langer's, Katz's, or Schwartz's?

    btw, I am reserved at the Days Inn at $103/night, but via the teachings of biddingfortravel.com, I'm trying to do better through Priceline. So my location may change.
  • Post #12 - April 3rd, 2007, 4:29 am
    Post #12 - April 3rd, 2007, 4:29 am Post #12 - April 3rd, 2007, 4:29 am
    I've been looking through the great neighborhood restaurants section, but it's a bit overwhelming. Which places there are closest to the -- I guess you might say -- tourist parts of town and which have late night hours and which don't close between lunch and dinner?
  • Post #13 - April 3rd, 2007, 5:20 am
    Post #13 - April 3rd, 2007, 5:20 am Post #13 - April 3rd, 2007, 5:20 am
    extramsg wrote:Are any of the delis in Chicago worth my time? Do they compare to Langer's, Katz's, or Schwartz's?


    I hesitate to make deli recommendations to a professional! People definitely do compare, say, Manny's to Langer's, but not always favorably. Then again, the followup to that post says "don't compare Manny's to Langer's."

    extramsg wrote:I've been looking through the great neighborhood restaurants section, but it's a bit overwhelming. Which places there are closest to the -- I guess you might say -- tourist parts of town and which have late night hours and which don't close between lunch and dinner?


    Well, there is the GNR Google Map, and the GNR pocket guide is organized by neighborhood -- but the neighborhood names may not mean too much for you. Depending on what you call "tourist," Frontera Grill may be the only GNR that is in a neighborhood like that (and people have been suggesting that it's not in its prime). Podhalanka, a Polish restaurant, is near Wicker Park and is probably the next closest to downtown. Well, and the aforementioned Manny's and its near-neighbor White Palace.

    What do you mean by "tourist areas?" -- the loop? That's a place people are always struggling to find above average places to eat. Some people are pretty enthusiastic about Heaven on Seven, although I've never been and I haven't seen it mentioned much around here. Its a "Louisiana" restaurant and its hours are pretty inconvenient unless you work around there -- 8:30 - 5 weekdays, 10 - 3 on Saturday and dinner one night a month.

    I supppose here on the board, the most recent enthusiasm for a Loop restaurant has been for Bombon Cafe (170 W. Washington).
    Joe G.

    "Whatever may be wrong with the world, at least it has some good things to eat." -- Cowboy Jack Clement
  • Post #14 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:25 am
    Post #14 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:25 am Post #14 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:25 am
    extramsg wrote:Are any of the delis in Chicago worth my time? Do they compare to Langer's, Katz's, or Schwartz's?


    I would say that if you're in a deli state of mind, Manny's wold be worth a visit. They serve a style of corned beef and pastrami that is different than all of the places you mentioned. It's not made in house and is cut thin. It's the other dishes and the atmosphere at Manny's are very worthy of a visit if you have never been. May favorite is the shortribs.

    Manny's Corned Beef
    Image

    Manny's Short Ribs
    Image

    Manny's Roast Beef
    Image
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #15 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:50 am
    Post #15 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:50 am Post #15 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:50 am
    The latest Manny's/Langer's/Katz's thread captures the truth pretty well, I think. While Manny's pastrami and CB are not corned or cured in-house (not sure that many are these days, as I thought the standouts have theirs made-to-specs), they are obviously steamed and sliced in-house. (We're not talking pre-portioned food service stuff here.) It's fair to say that the styles are apples and oranges, but in this case, apples (Langer's, Katz's) are objectively better than oranges.

    To the point that Langer's should not be compared to Manny's, that's true. Manny's meat does not compare favorably to Langer's (though it's still very tasty, I think). However, most everything else I care about at Langer's (soups, potato pancakes, chopped liver especially) doesn't compare well to Manny's, IMO. (The chopped liver ain't great at either place, actually. For that, I love Gibson's, believe it or not.) And to be realistic, there are only a small number of places anything like Langer's, Manny's, Katz's, Shapiro's, etc. left in the world, so why not go, if only to say you've been.

    PS, the roast beef is made in house, obviously, and is the favorite of many. You'll see in Steve's pic it is the one thing that's hand-carved. Find the horseradish among the tables.
  • Post #16 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:15 pm
    Post #16 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:15 pm Post #16 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:15 pm
    Thanks. Sounds like Manny's is worth a try at least. You know I'll be eating like a hobbit on the trip anyway, so it's not like I'll be giving up a meal to go there. It'll be good for this summer's menu development as we move towards opening the full-time deli.

    I really don't mind travellling for a good meal, even if it means spending a few hours at the Field Museum, going by public transit for a half hour to a meal, then back to the Art Institute for a couple more hours. Better that than settling for something typical or just merely good.

    Here's a list of places I have explored or been before, though that certainly doesn't preclude me from them in the future; it's mostly complete:

    High End European/New American
    Spiaggia, Trotter's, Tru

    Mexican/Latin
    Topolobampo, Frontera, Ixcapuzalco, Chilpancingo, Taqueria Puebla (both of them), La Unica, Carnitas Uruapan, Taqueria Cardonas, Ostioneria Playa Azul, Bombon, Nuevo Leon, Papa's Cache Sabroso, Birreria Ocotlan, La Cremeria Santa Maria, Aguascalientes, La Guadalupana, Atotonilco's, Maxwell Street Market, La Oaxaqueña, Joe's Liquors, El Chorrito

    Thai/Vietnamese
    Arun's, TAC Quick, Spoon, Tank Noodle, Viet Hoa, Thai Grocery, Asian Grocery, Aroy Thai

    Devon
    Sizzle India, Sabri Sweets, Udupi Palace, Bhabi's Kitchen, Ambala, Patel Brothers, Kadmar Plaza, Sukhadia's

    Other
    Al's Italian Beef, Lou Malnati's, Giodorno's, Weiner Circle, Miami Flavors, Lao Sze Chuan, Garrett's, Army & Lou's, Lem's, Miko's Italian Ice, Mario's Italian Ice, City Noor, Noon o Kabab, Ideal Pastry, Three Sisters, A&T, Kurowski, Pasieka, Meyer's Deli, Wikstroms, Georgian, Andy's, San Soo Gab San, Arirang Super, Green Market, Joe's Sausage, Cheese Stands Alone

    So here's what's set so far. Please help me fill it in and critique it as I go. I don't just want three meals a day. I'm not so much looking for upscale places. I'd be more interested in regional and ethnic foods as you can see from my previous adventures. I like to pack in as much as possible, especially on the days I'll be sans-wife:

    SUNDAY

    Get in latish to Midway, preferably find somewhere relatively nearby where we're staying, but still somewhere especially good and hopefully somewhat different from what I can get on a regular basis; currently staying in Lincoln Park that night. Wouldn't mind some really good Chicago thin crust pizza if there's any up that way.

    * Dinner: TBD

    MONDAY

    My wife's never been to Chicago. We'll probably focus on some tourist things she'd like. Right now I'm thinking the Art Institute and Field Museum might be good choices. Not sure what else, but probably stuff around the loop and near north. Depends on how efficient we are.

    * Lunch: TBD
    * Dinner: Thai food with Erik

    TUESDAY

    Not sure yet what to do. Maybe a river tour and some time on the magnificent mile. I don't know if I see my wife getting too thrilled by shopping, though, there. This may result in a day where we get away from the tourist neighborhoods and get into some of the culturally interesting neighborhoods, like Pilsen, La Villita, Devon, Humboldt Park, or wherever. Maybe Oak Park for some FLW. I'd love to take my wife to Taqueria Puebla because she loved the food in Puebla so much.

    * Lunch: TBD
    * Dinner: TBD

    WEDNESDAY

    I'll be on my own during the day. I'd love to meet some people for lunch and/or exploring. I'm really looking for suggestions, given where I've been before, as to where I should go now. Same with Thursday. Note that I'll be on foot and won't be wanting to spend money on taxis. But I don't mind walking a long ways, taking buses, and the el. Probably will try Manny's while on my own.

    * Dinner: Alinea

    THURSDAY

    Again on my own.

    * Dinner: Moto

    Friday

    We fly out. Probably just enough time to get an early bite.
  • Post #17 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:22 pm
    Post #17 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:22 pm Post #17 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:22 pm
    btw, will print the pocket guide now and put it with the travel docs.
  • Post #18 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:37 pm
    Post #18 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:37 pm Post #18 - April 3rd, 2007, 6:37 pm
    I notice the Devon section of your list is sorely lacking a visit to Kahn BBQ.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #19 - April 3rd, 2007, 7:51 pm
    Post #19 - April 3rd, 2007, 7:51 pm Post #19 - April 3rd, 2007, 7:51 pm
    I notice the Devon section of your list is sorely lacking a visit to Kahn BBQ.


    You should have spoke up on my last trips!

    btw, I should mention that I work the opposite of most people much of the time. I will choose non-food attractions based on where I've decided to eat. So don't think I'm locked into going to eat somewhere because I might want to see the Hancock. It's more likely to work the other way around. Tell me where I have to eat and then tell me what's worth visiting around it to fill the time before the next chow!
  • Post #20 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:18 pm
    Post #20 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:18 pm Post #20 - April 3rd, 2007, 8:18 pm
    Places I might try to fit in, based on your list of what you've done:

    First places that occurred to me:
    Avec (possibly the night you get in, even though it's a medium cab ride)
    Xni-Pec
    Depot American Diner
    Spacca Napoli

    Second places that occurred to me:
    Sabatino's
    Johnnie's Italian Beef (close to Oak Park, if you're heading out that way)
    Sticky Rice
    Semiramis/Salam/Nazareth Sweets
  • Post #21 - April 3rd, 2007, 10:23 pm
    Post #21 - April 3rd, 2007, 10:23 pm Post #21 - April 3rd, 2007, 10:23 pm
    Xni-Pec definitely has me interested since my wife loves papadzules. It's not my favorite Mexican food region, but it's one way too under-represented in US restaurants.

    I'm torn on Spacca Napoli. I love pizza. I love Neapolitan style pizza. But then, we have three very good places here in Portland, two of which use all wood ovens (Nostrana and Ken's Artisan Pizza) and one (Apizza Scholls) is better than them both despite using electric (at 800 degrees).

    Thanks. I'll check into the rest.
  • Post #22 - April 4th, 2007, 6:25 am
    Post #22 - April 4th, 2007, 6:25 am Post #22 - April 4th, 2007, 6:25 am
    Nick, you have no farmer's market visit in your plan. Why not visit the Green City Market on Wednesday AM (I'd be happy to guide). I'm sure in most ways it won't compare to Portland, at least not in splendor, but in quality, the produce from this part of the world is pretty tough to beat.

    For Devon, I'd ditch Bhabi's for sure, and instead try one of the nicer Pakistani places, Usmania or Sabri (see recent threads). Sizzle India is closed.

    I agree with Aaron that Xni-Pec is well worth the visit, one of the more intriguing and interesting places to open in a long while.

    Also, as I have mentioned in other threads like this, an often overlooked but special part of the "scene" in Chi-eats is our remaining old fashioned ice cream parlors. Cupid, Cunis, Gaety (all far from the Loop) are very special places. Margies is a small notch down, but still very worth it. You can do no better (Wednesday?*) of lunch at Top Notch Beefburger and dessert at Cunis Candies.

    *Note, I'd be happy to drive.
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #23 - April 4th, 2007, 7:37 am
    Post #23 - April 4th, 2007, 7:37 am Post #23 - April 4th, 2007, 7:37 am
    extramsg wrote:
    I notice the Devon section of your list is sorely lacking a visit to Kahn BBQ.


    You should have spoke up on my last trips!

    btw, I should mention that I work the opposite of most people much of the time. I will choose non-food attractions based on where I've decided to eat. So don't think I'm locked into going to eat somewhere because I might want to see the Hancock. It's more likely to work the other way around. Tell me where I have to eat and then tell me what's worth visiting around it to fill the time before the next chow!


    You're a man after my own heart. I usually plan my trips the same way. I've only recently become a Kahn's BBQ convert. In general, I'm not the biggest fan of food from the sub-continent, but since Kahn moved to their new location after the fire a year or so ago, I've learned to appreciate some of the dishes they offer including the delicious "broasted" chicken, which is somehow infused with ton's of flavor. I suspect maranade injection, but I'm not sure of the exact method they use to prepare the chicken. If you're going to the Devon area at all, it's well worth a stop.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #24 - April 4th, 2007, 8:01 am
    Post #24 - April 4th, 2007, 8:01 am Post #24 - April 4th, 2007, 8:01 am
    extramsg wrote:Mexican/Latin
    Topolobampo, Frontera, Ixcapuzalco, Chilpancingo, Taqueria Puebla (both of them), La Unica, Carnitas Uruapan, Taqueria Cardonas, Ostioneria Playa Azul, Bombon, Nuevo Leon, Papa's Cache Sabroso, Birreria Ocotlan, La Cremeria Santa Maria, Aguascalientes, La Guadalupana, Atotonilco's, Maxwell Street Market, La Oaxaqueña, Joe's Liquors, El Chorrito.

    You certainly get around!

    I might suggest adding Carniceria Leon to your Mexican/Latin list.

    I'll be happy to treat for the first 5 tacos al pastor and a soda. :)

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #25 - April 4th, 2007, 8:51 am
    Post #25 - April 4th, 2007, 8:51 am Post #25 - April 4th, 2007, 8:51 am
    Vital Information wrote:Nick, you have no farmer's market visit in your plan. Why not visit the Green City Market on Wednesday AM (I'd be happy to guide). I'm sure in most ways it won't compare to Portland, at least not in splendor, but in quality, the produce from this part of the world is pretty tough to beat.

    Not 100% sure but I don't think the outside GCM opens this year until Wednesday May 16.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #26 - April 4th, 2007, 9:02 am
    Post #26 - April 4th, 2007, 9:02 am Post #26 - April 4th, 2007, 9:02 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    Vital Information wrote:Nick, you have no farmer's market visit in your plan. Why not visit the Green City Market on Wednesday AM (I'd be happy to guide). I'm sure in most ways it won't compare to Portland, at least not in splendor, but in quality, the produce from this part of the world is pretty tough to beat.

    Not 100% sure but I don't think the outside GCM opens this year until Wednesday May 16.

    =R=


    I guess so, I had mis-read the original post, thinking he was coming the end of May. Anyway, the Top Notch/Cunnis offer still stands.
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #27 - April 4th, 2007, 9:33 am
    Post #27 - April 4th, 2007, 9:33 am Post #27 - April 4th, 2007, 9:33 am
    I will just focus on two suggestions here.

    1. Museums - If you are going to Pilsen and you should, you also must go to the newly renamed (not sure of the back story for this new name, but I imagine someone lined up some fed funding) National Museum of Mexican Art. It is not too large and easily digested in 2-3 hours at most, but it is focused on world class Mexican Art (capitals intended). Not sure where else you can find that. Then I would just go the the Art Institute, unless you have a great love for Natural History. While our T Rex is impressive, and the Egyptian stuff is good, I really do not credit the Field Museum with having such a unique collection. Don't get me wrong - it is a very good museum, but with limited time it would not be on my list.

    2. Upon arrival - you know I would hop the El at Midway, and get off in Chinatown for dinner. Sure, you may be able to get equal Chinese food elsewhere, but there are enough very good choices, and some are open quite late, that you can satisfy whatever Chinese taste you might have whenever you actually land, get fed, and then hop a cab (or an El if you want) up to your hotel. It just seems like a pretty simple and quick way to both get into town, and get immersed in Chicago from the get-go without hauling here and there and making the night much longer than necessary. I know that having the luggage is a little inconvenient, but the walking involved is not a lot and the restos will hold the bags if needed while you eat.

    The Museum rec is a strong one - Chinatown is just an idea to consider.
    d
    Feeling (south) loopy
  • Post #28 - April 4th, 2007, 12:59 pm
    Post #28 - April 4th, 2007, 12:59 pm Post #28 - April 4th, 2007, 12:59 pm
    dicksond wrote:2. Upon arrival - you know I would hop the El at Midway, and get off in Chinatown for dinner.


    Just a further note -- if you want to do this, you need to take the Orange Line from Midway up to Roosevelt, then transfer to the Red Line (underground at this point) to get back to Chinatown. The Orange Line unfortunately doesn't have a stop between Halsted (at Archer) and Roosevelt/State, though it goes over Ping Tom Park.
  • Post #29 - April 4th, 2007, 1:42 pm
    Post #29 - April 4th, 2007, 1:42 pm Post #29 - April 4th, 2007, 1:42 pm
    Thanks for all the suggestions. Is that museum the same as this one:

    http://www.extramsg.com/modules.php?set ... _album.php

    Either way, it'll be on my list. I'll put Xni-Pec at the top of the list, too, if nothing else for a "snack" of panuchos and papadzules.

    I'm really liking the printout of the GNR. I wish I could put the google map on my palm.

    One thing that occurred to me that might be a little tougher: what to do in the mornings? If I'm really going to pack in a day's food touring, I need to figure out what I can do before 11:30. Markets and bakeries seem like obvious choices. Perhaps a list of the best ethnic and specialty markets and bakeries that I haven't hit before would be really useful, or a particular concetration of them as a starting point for exploring.
  • Post #30 - April 4th, 2007, 3:09 pm
    Post #30 - April 4th, 2007, 3:09 pm Post #30 - April 4th, 2007, 3:09 pm
    extramsg wrote:One thing that occurred to me that might be a little tougher: what to do in the mornings? If I'm really going to pack in a day's food touring, I need to figure out what I can do before 11:30. Markets and bakeries seem like obvious choices.


    Besides a breakfast visit to Patty's, Moon's or Depot Dinerfor an American breakfast in an interesting diner setting, I'd also recommend a visit to Bridgeport Bakery for the illusive bacon buns or some of their top notch coffee cake (as served at Lou Mitchell's).
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven

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