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ISO - Downtown Chicago

ISO - Downtown Chicago
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  • ISO - Downtown Chicago

    Post #1 - October 7th, 2021, 6:11 pm
    Post #1 - October 7th, 2021, 6:11 pm Post #1 - October 7th, 2021, 6:11 pm
    Hi - I searched through the forum and found most places just outside the main part of the city. We, my husband and I, will be staying near Water Tower Place and are limited to places within walking distance, we will be exploring all around the Magnificent Mile, The Loop, Millennium and Grant Park, Navy Pier during our stay. We will be taking a few trips outside the city by train to Garfield Park Conservatory and Univ. of Chicago.

    We love hamburgers, Mexican, Italian, Chinese
    Our budget is $30-60 a meal
    Love unique places
    Would love some good pizza and hot dogs

    Thanks in advance.
  • Post #2 - October 8th, 2021, 7:27 am
    Post #2 - October 8th, 2021, 7:27 am Post #2 - October 8th, 2021, 7:27 am
    When our family is downtown, we typically go to Pizanos, which has great deep dish, but also wonderful other Italian food too. We go to the one on State St. which does not take reservations, but they turn over tables pretty quickly there.

    https://www.pizanoschicago.com/locations/
  • Post #3 - October 8th, 2021, 9:54 am
    Post #3 - October 8th, 2021, 9:54 am Post #3 - October 8th, 2021, 9:54 am
    My personal choice for deep dish pizza downtown is Pizzeria Due, the second pizzeria by the owners of Uno. They kept the classic recipe, so this is not your standard mall outlot pizza the way Uno Chicago Pizza was.

    For Italian, Quartino or Eataly are good options in the area.

    For Chinese in your area, there are Ming Hin or Lao Sze Chuan.
  • Post #4 - October 8th, 2021, 10:07 am
    Post #4 - October 8th, 2021, 10:07 am Post #4 - October 8th, 2021, 10:07 am
    A bit of walk. but for the quintessential Chicago Italian sub experience. JP Graziano 901 W Randolph. With Lake / Fulton right next to Randolph you are in the middle of a thriving upscale bar / restaurant district.

    Graziano is delicious but not upscale or expensive.
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #5 - October 8th, 2021, 1:38 pm
    Post #5 - October 8th, 2021, 1:38 pm Post #5 - October 8th, 2021, 1:38 pm
    I might as well say that you really sound like a candidate that should try to find themselves an Italian Beef sandwich somewhere. Feel free to check on the web or youtube what it is. It's a very Chicago food. Fit one into your puzzle where you can. Generally, Italian Beef joints will have Chicago hot dogs for you, too.
    Stalwarts that can be found in the Water Tower vicinity(ish:)
    Mr Beef
    Portillos
    Buona
    Al's
    We cannot be friends if you do not know the difference between Mayo and Miracle Whip.
  • Post #6 - October 13th, 2021, 3:12 pm
    Post #6 - October 13th, 2021, 3:12 pm Post #6 - October 13th, 2021, 3:12 pm
    For our local specialty of deep-dish pizza, Lou Malnati's is still the best. They have several locations in the downtown area, including State and Rush, Michigan Ave and Hubbard (at the river), and Wells and Hubbard. They get very busy, but you can phone ahead with your pizza order and I think this gets you seated when it's ready. I think.

    For Mexican, go to Rick Bayless's famous restaurants. Frontera Grill is the main, moderately priced one. Topolobampo is the upscale one (but moderately priced for lunch). If you're seated at the bar at Frontera, you can order items from either menu. He also has a sandwich place next door called Xoco. And his Tortas Frontera outlets at O'Hare have the best food at that airport.

    For Italian, I agree with the previous recommendation for Quartino, which is sort of a small plates Italian format. (Eataly's concept is a gigantic combination of a mall and a food court, everything Italian.)

    For Chicago hot dogs, Portillo's location on Ontario is convenient.

    You didn't mention seafood, but GT Fish & Oyster has incredibly fresh fish and is one of my favorite places downtown.

    Another outstanding place that doesn't fit into any category you mentioned is the Purple Pig, whose menu features everything from seafood to charcuterie to organ meats. They were always mobbed pre-pandemic with 2+ hour waits but I don't know how true that still is.
  • Post #7 - October 13th, 2021, 9:06 pm
    Post #7 - October 13th, 2021, 9:06 pm Post #7 - October 13th, 2021, 9:06 pm
    Do Lou's or Labriola for deep dish I love Labriola.

    Check out one of the Gibson's for a scene. Lao Szechaun is good for Chinese. Eataly is a must. Most good burger joints are outside that area Shake Shack is good. Check out the RPM restaurants.
  • Post #8 - October 14th, 2021, 6:17 am
    Post #8 - October 14th, 2021, 6:17 am Post #8 - October 14th, 2021, 6:17 am
    Tell you what, Volare on Grand is excellent and good bang for the buck. Can't go wrong with Shaw's Crabhouse either.
  • Post #9 - October 14th, 2021, 11:30 am
    Post #9 - October 14th, 2021, 11:30 am Post #9 - October 14th, 2021, 11:30 am
    Thanks to this forum we recently discovered Hendrickx Belgian Bread Crafter, a wonderful old world style bakery which serves lovely light lunch fare. It's just off Michigan Ave on Walton St., near the landmark Drake Hotel.

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