A travel journal
to Chicago by Ella M
Quote: Chicago has always been hidden behind the shadow of its jet-set brother, New York City. With its nonstop activity and friendly atmosphere, in some ways the "Second City" is better than the first.
As soon as you walk into the Cheesecake Factory, you will realize that this is a most unusual place. High ceilings and swirling décor greet you. (This motif is carried on in the bathrooms, which are worth visiting just to see their unique arrangement.) At the table, you will be confronted with what is surely one of the thickest menus in the world—appetizers, pizza, salads, sandwiches, burgers (the kind that are so wide you can barely squeeze them into your mouth), pastas, breakfast items, oriental cuisine. All of it delicious; all of it in excessively generous portions.
Unless your stomach far defies normal human capacity, I strongly recommend you not order an appetizer with your main dish. Or, better yet, just order an appetizer—it will leave more room for dessert. And, as amazing as the food at this restaurant is, dessert is the true reason for coming here. There’s an almost ridiculous variety of cheesecake, each type rich and mouthwatering. There’s also a fair selection of other kinds of dessert. Bon Appetit!
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 31, 2000
The Cheesecake Factory
875 N. Michigan Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60611
But don’t go to Gino’s just for the food (as if that weren’t reason enough!) Take a pen, marker, or liquid paper, and leave your mark. The dimly lit cavernous restaurant is covered from floor to ceiling with patron’s declarations of love, anarchy, and other graffiti. The bathrooms are the only place that have been spared.
Go at odd hours—2 or 3 in the afternoon. Otherwise, be prepared to wait a minimum of 45 minutes before getting a table.
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 31, 2000
633 N Wells St
Chicago, Illinois 60610
But even if your group is smaller, Midori is still worth going to. The place, with its bamboo furnishings and kimono-garbed staff, radiates a serene atmosphere. There are delicious soups; huge, crisp tempuras; a wide variety of sushi, and more. The food—starting with unusual, fun appetizers and miso soup—is brought out in elegant ceramic bowls, each baring a distinct design. The meal ends with juicy slices of orange. The fact that patrons are served by Korean waitresses and highly adept Mexican sushi chefs at this Japanese restaurant just adds to the general celebration of diversity found in Chicago.
3310 W. Bryn Mawr Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60659
Attraction | "Mortom Arboretum"
At the entrance, make sure to get a map of the place, and ask about what things are in bloom. Near the first parking lot are Visitor Services, Gift Shop, and Ginkgo Restaurant, with its tempting cuisine. To one one side of these buildings is a short trail around an idyllic lake. On the other side is a hedge garden with a maze-like design, the perfect spot for bridal photography.
A short drive or tour on the Acorn Express Tram will take you to the other sections of the 1,700 acre Arboretum, with its impressive variety of over 3,600 types of plants from around the world. During the right season, the wildflower meadow offers the most impressive walk.
If you need a break from the frenzy and noise of the big city, Morton Arboretum offers the perfect escape.
4100 Illinois Route 53
Lilse, Illinois 60532
+1 630 968 0074
Attraction | "Lincoln Park/Lakeshore Area"
Here are some more things you can find along the Lakeshore trail:
600-5800 North Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, Illinois 60614
+1 773 742 7529