Chicago Journals

Good Eats in the Windy City

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A May 2004 trip to Chicago by Sierra

Grand Lux Café Photo, Chicago, Illinois More Photos
Quote: Chicago has some of the most exciting restaurants in the US - come explore the culinary delights of the Windy City!

Good Eats in the Windy City

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Overview

Twisted Spoke - Lakeview Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
Chicago has stepped into the light as a food-lover's paradise. From top-end restaurants such as Charlie Trotter's and Ambria all the way down to corner dives serving Chicago "dawgs" (100% pure beef hot dog, poppy seed bun, yellow mustard, sweet relish, chopped onions, pickle spear, tomato, celery salt, sport peppers), there's something for every taste here. I swear that even the dives are good! Indecisive about what to try? Come to the annual Taste of Chicago, which runs for 2 weeks at the end of June through July 4th, and brings together more than 60 restaurants to showcase their talents, in combination with top-notch entertainment from around the country. If "the Taste" seems ...Read More

Grand Lux Café

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Restaurant | "Grand Lux Cafe"

Grand Lux Café Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
In 1999, The Cheesecake Factory opened the first of its new chain of stores - the Grand Lux Cafe - in the Venetian resort in Las Vegas. To date, there are only two other GLC's: one in Los Angeles and one in Chicago, which is located on the Magnificent Mile stretch of Michigan Avenue. A friend raved and raved about the restaurant till finally I caved in and tried it out. Now I'm the one who raves and raves! While its given address is '600 N Michigan', you actually enter the restaurant from the Ontario Street side of the building, where you are greeted by the hosts. You take an escalator upstairs to the main restaurant, which puts you right in front of the dessert counter and open kitchen for a t...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on June 29, 2004

Grand Lux Café
600 N Michigan Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60611
(312) 276-2500

Twisted Spoke

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Restaurant | "Twisted Spoke Lakeview"

Twisted Spoke Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
Looking for someplace good to take my mom last time she was in town, I took her to the Twisted Spoke. "A biker bar?" she asked dubiously. Not just a biker bar... a "family biker bar," as brothers Mitch and Cliff Elnhorn have classified their establishment. How many biker bars do you know that have a recipe listed on Food TV's website? How many bars have Jack Daniels on tap, not just in bottles? How many restaurants greet you with a full-size human skeleton atop a Harley? We visited the newer Lakeview location (3365 N. Clark, 773-525-5300) but it is true to the original (501 North Ogden Avenue at Grand, 312-666-1500), with a...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 2, 2004

Twisted Spoke
3365 N. Clark St.
Chicago, Illinois 60657
773/525-5300

P.J. Clarke's

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Restaurant

P.J. Clarke's Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
In the 1986 film, "About Last Night...", Rob Lowe is a guy who, in the end of the film, decides to open a restaurant that fufills his ideal of a comfortable local watering/dining hole. At the end of the film as his character tries to get back together with his ex-girlfriend, he wants to show her the place, and, in an effort to downplay what he's doing, calls it "just some joint," inferring that the place is so casual and laid-back that it's no big deal. As the characters in "About Last Night..." live in Chicago, they should have just gone to P.J. Clarke's, which is actually right around the corner from a bar that many scenes in the movie focus around (Mother's). P.J. Clarke's...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 8, 2004

P.J. Clarke's
1204 North State St
Chicago, Illinois 60610
+1 312 664 1650

Marshall Field's

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Restaurant

Marshall Field's Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
For a good place to eat, a department store may not be foremost in your mind. But the grand dame of the Chicago department stores - Marshall Field's - has their flagship location at 111 North State Street in the Loop, and this location contains not just one but several choices for refreshment while you shop. Established in 1852, Marshall Field's was a pioneer in many ways, including being the first to offer a bridal registry and the first department store to open a dining room. The exquisite Tiffany dome that soars over the entry floor is the largest of its kind, and its holiday windows displays are a favorite for Chicagoans. Marshall Field's flagship store - the 2nd largest department s...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 16, 2004

Marshall Field's
111 North State Street
Chicago, Illinois 60602
312/781-1000

Capra's Coffee

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Restaurant

Quote:
Sushi and ... coffee? Surely, you think, an odder pairing of foodstuffs could not be possible. But at Capra's Coffee in Chicago, it's not just possible - it's their business. Actually, it was this odd combination that first drew me to walk into Capra's doors - for, as offbeat as the taste combination was, I was craving an espresso and had been in the mood for sushi. If their sushi looked unappetizing, I figured I could always escape to the other sushi place further down the block. Capra's is stocked with Japanese treats and of course, coffee-related goods, looking like a coffee shop ran full tilt into a Hello, Kitty store. They're also always very busy, with their...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 20, 2004

Capra's Coffee
46 S. Clark St.
Chicago, Illinois 60603
312/422-0142

Ben Pao

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Restaurant

Ben Pao Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
In a city that actually has a Chinatown, it seems odd to suggest going elsewhere in town for a good Chinese meal, but Ben Pao in the River North area of town is a gem in what is otherwise a fairly touristy area of the city. Ben Pao is located on the corner of West Illinois and North Dearborn, just 2 blocks from the Grand stop on the Red "L" line. With its distinctive triagular red awnings and the large rotating red ball with 'Ben Pao' on it, it's hard to miss. When you walk inside, it is like walking into a very tasteful and very serene Chinese palace - it is beautifully decorated in red, gold and black. There is a satay bar to your left, or you cross o...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 26, 2004

Ben Pao
52 West Illinois St
Chicago, Illinois 60610
+1 312 222 1888

Catch 35

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Restaurant

Catch 35 Photo, Chicago, Illinois
Quote:
Having grown up in New England, I have a fondness for seafood. When I first moved to Chicago 6 years ago, I had a difficult time finding a decent seafood restaurant, an interesting thing in a city situated next to one of the largest freshwater lakes in the world. Then Catch 35 opened. (They also have a location in Naperville.) Catch 35 is located at 35 West Wacker Dr., facing the Chicago River in the ground floor of the Leo Burnett building. As you enter, there is a spacious piano bar to the left, and the main part of the restaurant to the right. Reservations are highly recommended; I always suggest using ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 9, 2005

Catch 35
35 West Wacker Dr
Chicago, Illinois 60601
+1 312 346 3500