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Tiniest/most uncomfortable chairs in Chicago?

Tiniest/most uncomfortable chairs in Chicago?
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  • Tiniest/most uncomfortable chairs in Chicago?

    Post #1 - April 1st, 2008, 12:22 pm
    Post #1 - April 1st, 2008, 12:22 pm Post #1 - April 1st, 2008, 12:22 pm
    Hi

    In my ongoing effort to live better by eating better, I am searching for restaurants & bars in Chicago (& surrounding areas) that have small, uncomfortable chairs. My theory is that if I sit at a table with a small, uncomfortable chair, or at a bar with a small, uncomfortable barstool, I will not linger as long and will thereby cut my time at said table/bar, thereby cutting the amount of time I have to eat, thereby cutting my food intake, and thereby cutting my calories! (I may soon be writing a book on this new diet - I'll call it The Small Seat Diet. Get it?? Get it? "Small seat"? It works both ways! )

    Of course, this will only work if I can resist the temptation to wolf the food/drink down before my ass starts aching...but I figure it's worth a shot!
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing!
  • Post #2 - April 1st, 2008, 12:31 pm
    Post #2 - April 1st, 2008, 12:31 pm Post #2 - April 1st, 2008, 12:31 pm
    I'd start with Avec at 615 W. Randolph. It doesn't get much more uncomfortable. I'm not sure you'll eat less here, but you won't linger.
  • Post #3 - April 1st, 2008, 1:58 pm
    Post #3 - April 1st, 2008, 1:58 pm Post #3 - April 1st, 2008, 1:58 pm
    deesher wrote:I'd start with Avec at 615 W. Randolph. It doesn't get much more uncomfortable. I'm not sure you'll eat less here, but you won't linger.

    I agree that Avec has the most uncomfortable seating of any restaurant I can recall. However, the OP asked for "small, uncomfortable chairs", and I don't think you can call anything there a "chair". At the bar, you've got hard wooden bar stools with minimal horizontal area and no back whatsoever. At the tables (8-tops), you have a choice of hard wooden bench seating along the wall, or... well, I would refer to them as boxes, rather than chairs, if you're not along the wall; they're really just a plain wooden box you're sitting on, without a back or legs. Of course, Avec's defenders will be quick to point out that you can ask for their optional cushions, which are about as thin as a well-made crepe.

    As Phil Vettel said in his review in the Tribune:

    Phil Vettel wrote:Chairs and barstools have no backs--zero--so if back support is an issue, sit on the wood banquette spanning the outer wall and BYOB (bring your own bolster). And a note to those who favor super low-rise jeans: Backless chairs are not necessarily the best place for those pants. I spent one dinner with a straight-ahead view of a woman whose pants were two inches shy of modesty; no doubt she would be scandalized to know we were on such visually intimate terms.
    Last edited by nsxtasy on April 1st, 2008, 2:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #4 - April 1st, 2008, 2:00 pm
    Post #4 - April 1st, 2008, 2:00 pm Post #4 - April 1st, 2008, 2:00 pm
    Bluebird's chairs at their bar suck.
  • Post #5 - April 1st, 2008, 2:07 pm
    Post #5 - April 1st, 2008, 2:07 pm Post #5 - April 1st, 2008, 2:07 pm
    nsxtasy wrote:[I agree that Avec has the most uncomfortable seating of any restaurant I can recall. However, the OP asked for "small, uncomfortable chairs", and I don't think you can call anything there a "chair". .

    Oh, chairs, boxes, whatever! As long as I can perch my fluffy behind on it, it doesn't really matter what you call it.
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing!
  • Post #6 - April 1st, 2008, 2:08 pm
    Post #6 - April 1st, 2008, 2:08 pm Post #6 - April 1st, 2008, 2:08 pm
    You say you've always wanted to sit between two birchwood paddles lashed together with rebar?

    Get thee to Chipotle. Your chiropractor will thank you.

    http://flickr.com/photos/earthshine-design/1956603151/
  • Post #7 - April 1st, 2008, 7:15 pm
    Post #7 - April 1st, 2008, 7:15 pm Post #7 - April 1st, 2008, 7:15 pm
    violet on southport
  • Post #8 - April 1st, 2008, 7:40 pm
    Post #8 - April 1st, 2008, 7:40 pm Post #8 - April 1st, 2008, 7:40 pm
    Wow. I posted this as an April Fools Joke. I am surpised to find that there are actually that many establishments catering to the tiny derrierred.

    WTF is that all about?
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing!
  • Post #9 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:43 am
    Post #9 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:43 am Post #9 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:43 am
    upstairs at Mirai Sushi
  • Post #10 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:52 am
    Post #10 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:52 am Post #10 - April 2nd, 2008, 8:52 am
    Liz in Norwood Park wrote:Wow. I posted this as an April Fools Joke. I am surpised to find that there are actually that many establishments catering to the tiny derrierred.

    WTF is that all about?


    Never underestimate the power of LTH to obsess over even the most minute detail.

    :-)
    Dominic Armato
    Dining Critic
    The Arizona Republic and azcentral.com
  • Post #11 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:45 am
    Post #11 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:45 am Post #11 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:45 am
    I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #12 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:49 am
    Post #12 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:49 am Post #12 - April 2nd, 2008, 9:49 am
    I don't think its minute...the comfort factor is of great importance to me.

    I hate going to a bar/restaurant & feeling uncomfortable while I'm sitting.
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing!
  • Post #13 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:17 am
    Post #13 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:17 am Post #13 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:17 am
    teatpuller wrote:I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?

    Alinea . . . they're built specifically for the mission.

    Definitely agree about Avec; horrible seating for my plump rump.

    =R=
    Same planet, different world
  • Post #14 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:22 am
    Post #14 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:22 am Post #14 - April 2nd, 2008, 10:22 am
    teatpuller wrote:I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?

    Well, at the excellent Sunday brunch recently at Between in Wicker Park, I noticed that some of the tables have big overstuffed couches rather than chairs. They're probably very comfortable for sitting/lounging, but maybe less so for eating; leaning over a coffee table to eat seems like it would be less comfortable than conventional chairs at a table at conventional dining height (which is where we ate).

    When seating is exceptionally comfortable, you're probably a lot less likely to notice it and remember it than when it's exceptionally uncomfortable.
  • Post #15 - April 2nd, 2008, 1:55 pm
    Post #15 - April 2nd, 2008, 1:55 pm Post #15 - April 2nd, 2008, 1:55 pm
    teatpuller wrote:Who has the most comfortable chairs?


    they dont serve food or a particularly refreshing selection of beers - but it's my watering hole and home to absolutely the most comfortable bar stools i've sat on......

    Four Treys Bar
    3333. N Damen
    dog friendly
  • Post #16 - April 2nd, 2008, 3:29 pm
    Post #16 - April 2nd, 2008, 3:29 pm Post #16 - April 2nd, 2008, 3:29 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    teatpuller wrote:I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?

    Alinea . . . they're built specifically for the mission.

    Definitely agree about Avec; horrible seating for my plump rump.

    =R=


    Totally agree on Alinea. Most comfortable restaurant chairs ever.
    -Josh

    I've started blogging about the Stuff I Eat
  • Post #17 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:16 am
    Post #17 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:16 am Post #17 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:16 am
    teatpuller wrote:I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?


    According to Pie Dude, Uncommon Ground's outdoor patio has the best seats. If he hadn't had to get home to his laundry, he said he would have stayed there in the sun, drinking lemonade, until they closed.

    For most uncomfortable seats, try Pizzeria Ora at LaSalle & Erie. They're the metal-frame-black-cushion kind you often see in old pizzerias, only there is no more padding, just hard bars and pleather ass groves. Plus the pizza is bland. :x
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #18 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:21 am
    Post #18 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:21 am Post #18 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:21 am
    They've recently upgraded them, but Joy Yee's on Halsted used to have hard wood, diamond-shaped chairs that were very unkind to the nether regions. You wouldn't want to sit for more than forty-five minutes.
  • Post #19 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:30 am
    Post #19 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:30 am Post #19 - April 3rd, 2008, 8:30 am
    jesteinf wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    teatpuller wrote:I find it to be a great topic actually. Who has the most comfortable chairs?

    Alinea . . . they're built specifically for the mission.

    Definitely agree about Avec; horrible seating for my plump rump.

    =R=


    Totally agree on Alinea. Most comfortable restaurant chairs ever.


    I'll third the Alinea vote. I've never sat for over four hours like that without noticing my chair (or achiness in my rear end and back). I also find the tall chairs at the Violet Hour surprisingly comfortable. They have a cocoon effect, very protected. Otom's plastic chairs also surprised me--they're a lot more comfortable and supportive than they look.
  • Post #20 - May 12th, 2008, 10:24 am
    Post #20 - May 12th, 2008, 10:24 am Post #20 - May 12th, 2008, 10:24 am
    jpschust wrote:Bluebird's chairs at their bar suck.


    These seem to have been replaced...
    Leek

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  • Post #21 - May 12th, 2008, 9:26 pm
    Post #21 - May 12th, 2008, 9:26 pm Post #21 - May 12th, 2008, 9:26 pm
    Sushi Wabi... The chairs are WW2 surplus. Awful.
  • Post #22 - June 19th, 2008, 11:03 am
    Post #22 - June 19th, 2008, 11:03 am Post #22 - June 19th, 2008, 11:03 am
    radiator wrote:They've recently upgraded them, but Joy Yee's on Halsted used to have hard wood, diamond-shaped chairs that were very unkind to the nether regions. You wouldn't want to sit for more than forty-five minutes.


    Ugh. I just at the Joy Yee and Evanston and these are worse! The wood has been changed to metal and the diamond is situated in place where there should be no diamonds. I'll say no more...
    Did you know there is an LTHforum Flickr group? I just found it...
  • Post #23 - August 4th, 2008, 11:15 am
    Post #23 - August 4th, 2008, 11:15 am Post #23 - August 4th, 2008, 11:15 am
    ChgoMike wrote:
    radiator wrote:They've recently upgraded them, but Joy Yee's on Halsted used to have hard wood, diamond-shaped chairs that were very unkind to the nether regions. You wouldn't want to sit for more than forty-five minutes.


    Ugh. I just at the Joy Yee and Evanston and these are worse! The wood has been changed to metal and the diamond is situated in place where there should be no diamonds. I'll say no more...


    I just sat in these chairs the other week at the University Village location--extremely uncomfortable to the nether regions and to the legs, if you're wearing shorts. I believe the design is by Konstantin Grcic. Totally baffling decision on Joy Yee's part...I'm a fan of minimalism but not of this sort.
  • Post #24 - August 4th, 2008, 11:57 am
    Post #24 - August 4th, 2008, 11:57 am Post #24 - August 4th, 2008, 11:57 am
    I think I have a reasonably high tolerance for moderate discomfort, and there is only one restaurant where the design of the chairs prohibits me from enjoying the food: Chopal.

    The chairs have a back so high and straight that it almost feels like it's pitched forward. The table is not sufficiently high enough to clear the tops of my knees comfortably when sitting there. The one time that I had dinner at Chopal, I felt as though I was being forced into a medieval torture device. Also, at the time there were no regular-sized two-tops in the restaurant. Every table was a giant glass-topped square that had to be six feet on each side. I just remember two of us in these horrible chairs at this huge glass table. All I remember from that meal was that the food wasn't good enough to make me endure that torture again.

    Best,
    Michael
  • Post #25 - August 4th, 2008, 12:06 pm
    Post #25 - August 4th, 2008, 12:06 pm Post #25 - August 4th, 2008, 12:06 pm
    My vote for the most uncomfortable chairs goes to the chair/stools in the western-most room at the Violet Hour. The first room when you enter (the eastern-most room) has chairs that have tall backs. These may be very uncomfortable also, but I haven't had the displeasure of trying them. The second room has a few booths, which have pretty standard booth seats. The third room (the western-most room) has very low stools around small, low tables. They would have to pay me $11 per drink to sit there.

    Best seats at Violet Hour are at the bar.
  • Post #26 - November 1st, 2021, 6:15 am
    Post #26 - November 1st, 2021, 6:15 am Post #26 - November 1st, 2021, 6:15 am
    So many restaurant seats are noticeably bad. With limited space and even more limited budgets, restaurant designers often have to do a lot with a little — and seating can feel like an afterthought. From the woefully small to the unpleasantly sticky, creaky, and ergonomically wacky, here are the six least comfortable restaurant chairs, ranked from bad to worst.

    https://www.eater.com/22696498/restaura ... ols-booths
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #27 - November 1st, 2021, 7:06 am
    Post #27 - November 1st, 2021, 7:06 am Post #27 - November 1st, 2021, 7:06 am
    On the plus side, for the most comfortable chairs, you can definitely add Ever to the list. Also, a perennial favorite but I haven't been in a few years so hope they haven't changed or worn, are, unsurprisingly when you think of it, the soft leather chairs and banquettes at RL.

    Ever Restaurant
    1340 W. Fulton St.
    Chicago, IL 60607

    RL
    115 E. Chicago Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60611
  • Post #28 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:30 am
    Post #28 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:30 am Post #28 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:30 am
    This topic is no joke for me. I suffer from arthritis and fibro and I also am tallish and weighty. Many time I have passed up sitting in a chair as I don't know if it will hold me. I steer away from restaurants with uncomfortable chairs, that don't accomodate wide hips or a plump rump. I love to use open table and to make a reservation at a place with booths, padded preferred, and nice clean bathrooms.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #29 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:56 am
    Post #29 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:56 am Post #29 - November 3rd, 2021, 10:56 am
    toria wrote:I love to use open table and to make a reservation at a place with booths, padded preferred, and nice clean bathrooms.

    I avoid booths like the plague. It is the fixed seating that can be too much or too little with no opportunity to adjust. If you are unlucky to be in the inner position, then you need someone to move to allow an exit. The nightmare of booth seating are the semi-circular accomodating lots of people. Just thought of another nightmare combo: buffet meal and a semi-circular booth.

    When I was five and could dive under the table to get out, then any booth worked.

    Remember reading a long time ago of a pregnant woman who evaluated dining room chairs for comfort. I am sure whatever she selected was great.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
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  • Post #30 - November 7th, 2021, 10:42 am
    Post #30 - November 7th, 2021, 10:42 am Post #30 - November 7th, 2021, 10:42 am
    As long as the booths are large enough I am all for them. I wish that restaurants would go back to the comfortable padded booths of yesteryear. It is a bit of a pain to disrupt dining companions to get out of them if you have to make a trip....
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare

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