To catch up on Part I, click here.
So where did I leave off? Oh yes, Chicago. One subject I haven’t touched on is food. Food is a very important part of my happiness, I’m sure a lot of you can relate. There are at least two types of snacks in my purse at any given time. I bring clementines(when they’re in season, of course) to the movies with me. I don’t really like going out and doing anything if some sort of snacking isn’t involved. I think that’s mainly why I don’t understand bar hopping, but whatever. Like, can I get an appetizer? The most difficult decision for me and my husband to make each day, is what we’re going to eat for dinner. We take it seriously. Anyway, when I travel somewhere, I like to plan out whats and wheres of eating.
Chicago cuisine, let’s see, we have deep dish pizza and chicago-style hot dogs. I planned on trying both. I also wanted to make it a point to go to RPM, which is Giuliana and Bill Rancic’s Restaurant. This is because I’m pop-culture and reality TV obsessed and you probably are too, right?
I hope no Chicago natives hate me for this, but I didn’t like your hot dogs… or pizza. Sorry. We ate at Gino’s East, after waiting on a huge line. I figured the pizza must be good, then. No? We ordered both deep dish and regular thin crust pizza. I wasn’t expecting much from the thin crust; this is because I am from New Jersey and you just can’t get any better than that, as far as pizza and bagels are concerned. That is a fact. The deep dish, on the other hand, was something that I was very curious to try. I had two bites of it and I was able to swallow those two bites, but I feared if I attempted a third, I would toss my cookies. So I did not try a third. It was too thick, too much stuff, not good dough, not good sauce. Quite frankly, it grossed me out. I then attempted the thin crust and I was able to eat the whole slice, but it was not good. It was all very bad. Now, I’m fully open to trying a different place for pizza next time I go to Chicago, but in theory, I feel that deep dish pizza is gross. Oh, and as far as hot dogs go, I just like them boiled with mustard and ketchup, so all the toppings weren’t my style. If any of you out there have any feedback on pizza places in Chicago, I’m open to trying it again. I hope there are no hard feelings.
Sushi Samba was very good. It’s a wildly decorated Japanese/Brazilian/Peruvian restaurant, which has locations in five cities. It was a little on the pricey side but the food was delicious and the ambience was wonderfully different.
Carmine’s on Rush Street, borders a small park which is surrounded by restaurants. I loved this area of the city, it was especially beautiful at night. The food at Carmine’s is Italian and very good. The restaurant inside is classic and has outdoor seating in the Summer. I would highly recommend this place, it was more family oriented, it reminded me of the North Beach section of San Francisco.
We didn’t eat dinner at RPM because reservations were pretty impossible to get, but we did go to the bar and have drinks and appetizers. It was chic. Very contemporary and clean. The service was very good and so were the appetizers. This was also an Italian restaurant, but more of a modern Italian. I would recommend this place if you can get a reservation, very well done.
Chicago also has a Magnolia Bakery! Dessert is my favorite!
As for night life, we went bar hopping in Old Town, and there was no snacking involved. But it was a fun time. I really can’t remember the last time I had so many drinks, probably because there wasn’t one. I drank the most I ever drank in Chicago. I’m not a drinker; two is a lot for me. I think I had like NINE drinks in one night! Yikes! Old town is a little more laid back than some of the other spots in the city, where all the trendy clubs are. I mean, some of the places in Old town are a little “club-ish” but not for the most part. It was just bar after bar. There were a good amount of places with outdoor areas; one place even had a retractable roof! It was just a good time spent with some old friends. Oh, I almost forgot to tell you – one of our other friends from our Minnesota days currently lives in Indiana, so he made the trip out to Chicago to meet up with us. Isn’t that great?! It got a little wild.
We had a blast. I love Chicago and I can’t wait to go again! All the celebrating led to this on Sunday morning.