Need anniversary dinner for tonight!
Okay, I've been a bad, bad girl...I forgot my own anniversary. And it's the first one!
We're from SF visiting Chicago for this weekend...I'm typing away in a hotel room. Totally forgot about our anniversary tomorrow, so didn't make any real plans for tonight. Any suggestions for a great restaurant that may be able to squeeze us in for reservations tonight? Thanks for the help!
Since you are from the west coast, you may not mind eating late. If so, there are some stellar choices that still have space according to OpenTable.com: Avenues, Custom House, Copperblue. Look at a similar non-specific where-to-eat post on this board, slect a couple of places, and look on opentable.com.
Give Blackbird a call - this is my favorite among what I call the "second-tier" restaurants (top-tier being Alinea, Tru, Avenues). If you see any dish with pork belly on the menu, order it - it will be divine. Another thought is Spiaggia, for excellent haute-Italian (even the bar nibblies at Spiaggia are excellent).
I myself am not a fan of Spring (I'd call it 3rd-tier) - food was good, but service (on the night we were there, at least) was maddeningly unprofessional.
If you like Japanese, Meiji, at 623 W. Randolph (right next to Blackbird) is a stellar Japanese place (best in the city, IMHO), and I don't think they are ever so packed that you couldn't get in if you call ahead.
Also try Topolobampo, for wonderful haute-Mexican by Chicago's own Rick bayless. Romantic room, too. They are usually booked unless you want to eat early or late, but it's worth a call.
My favorite French place is Jackie's Bistro - in Evanston, but well worth the drive. Romantic room and excellent food and service.
Good luck (and Happy Anniversary!).
I would suggest Ambria. It is not one of the new, trendy restaurants, so you have a much better chance of getting a last-minute reservation than for a lot of the high-end restaurants that are the subject of so much discussion on this board. The food is good, atmosphere quiet & classy - a good spot for a celebration, assuming you are not looking for a "lively" scene and like French food.
If you can get in, though I'm not sure whether you'd be able to or not, Spring would be a good choice. I went there for an anniversary a while back and it was perfect. The food was great and service very attentive (and congratulatory).
Another one would be Crofton on Wells, which is very quiet, somewhat dim lighting, so the ambiance is probably right. I recall some very nicely balanced seafood dishes. I was there for a birthday and the servers knew just how to handle it. There was no HUGE production made of it, but it was acknowledged warmly and discreetly. Crofton may be easier to get into.