There’s a lot to commend the culinary scene in Chicago. I had tremendous fun browsing the web before jetting off, scouring review after review for the best in town. The first things you’ll likely come across are the stunning-looking but frankly bank breaking likes of Alinea or Grace.
Since funds won’t stretch that far for the moment so they have to live in the land of ‘one day’ for now. Others, like the equally famous but infinitely more reasonable ‘Girl and the goat’ were high on my list of desires but planning a last minute trip as we did will scupper those dreams too. Funny that, popular restaurants book up!
Don’t get me wrong – this isn’t me moaning. Not having reservations anywhere didn’t mean we went hungry. Far from it! You’ll have seen there were a few standout meals I felt deserved a full post to themselves so this is a mop up of the rest; by no means less worthy, but just too many to go through one by one.
Let’s start with the iconic Italian beef sandwiches, which are as good as they say. Honestly, I didn’t imagine I would be a fan. Why I’m not entirely sure but they struck me as stodge and not much else. I’ll happily eat my words. The spiced up sarnie from Al’s beef was a no-frills feast and I would wager would be the ultimate hangover cure.
We did, of course, sample some deep dish. In fact we sampled some twice. In Chicago it would be rude not to. Once from Giordano’s, once from Pizano’s, they were both fine though I reckon there’s better Chicago-style pizza out there and anyway I think I will forever be a thin crust kind of girl. It takes a lot to trump pizza like those at Story.
We were in town for the Randolf Street Festival which made for a nice afternoon a wandering; lots and lots of snack-size tasters from local eateries and music for every taste. We snaffled tacos, hot dogs and all sorts else including a dirty burger from Chicken Shop.
A great place for cheese and champers is RM Champagne salon which has a great outside terrace and some fabulous cheeses. But a quick word of warning… it does feel more like the place to be seen rather than the place to go for a satisfying meal. If that’s what you’re after hop next door to Green Street Meats.
We popped to Bites for dinner one evening. The Asian tapas menu was really promising; the evening though, sadly didn’t deliver, mostly due to some really poor service. One genius idea though was the taro chips.