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Dec 7, 2006 02:17 PM

Chicago Geography - anything 'near' Swissotel?

Staying at Swissotel at 323 E. Wacker Drive - any place good within walking distance (i.e. one mile, although I guess it's cold in Chicago in the winter...) for either lunch or dinner?


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  1. The Swisshotel is sort of out on an island on East Wacker. The restaurant at the hotel has a reputation for being decent, and there is also Aria at the Fairmont which is in walking distance and is also pretty good.

    However, you are about a 10 - 20 minute cab ride from many great places, from Custom House towards the south even up to Charlie Trotters or Alinea in Lincoln Park/Old Town.

    I would forget about walking and take a cab some place.

    If you provide some additional info as to price point and food preferences and I can provide additional info.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Skeeter

      Ok, thanks - then a cab it is.

      I have two meals to eat in Chicago - a lunch on Friday with one person (who's not much of a foodie, but I'm willing to impose my preferences on him), and then a dinner for 6 people (majority of foodies).

      We're coming from Boston, Berkeley, and Washington DC., so all have access to "good" food - is there something like a Chez Pannise of Chicago? I.e. local food done well? (Although I'm not much of a beef eater, which is what I think of local food for Chicago in winter!)

      Otherwise, I've read that there a good BYOB Thai places? I was going to make reservations at Topolobambo, but it's closed that week.


    2. Zest - very good contemporary American food. This is in the Inter-Continental on Michigan Ave, but the prices are very reasonable for a restaurant in a hotel. The lobster club at lunch is great!

      Other options within walking distance (listed by distance from the hotel, closest first):
      China Grille - I haven't been, but I've heard good things.
      South Water Kitchen (Southern mostly)
      Catch 35 (Seafood)
      VTK (inauthentic Thai food, but yummy)
      Vermillion (Indian-Latin Fusion)
      Kevin (contemporary American with Asian influences)

      All of these are open for lunch and dinner.

      1. The Palm restaurant is in Swissotel..But I'd avoid it, particularly if you aren't a big fan of large steaks. I think that Catch 35 and Kevin are good recommendations. My brother and sister-in-law dined at Vermillion for a big celebratory dinner and were very underwhelmed.

        1. As for dining somewhat akin to Chez Panisse and reasonably close to the Swissotel that a group of 6 might enjoy:

          Crofton on Wells

          all within a $10 cab ride... do some research and see if their menus appeal to you.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Chicago Mike

            Not a dinner suggestion, but it looks like a good breakfasttakeout place is nearby called Fox and Obel. I happen to be looking for suggestions in the same area and came up with that one on another thread.


            1. re: Chicago Mike

              I had the absolute WORST restaurant experience in my entire life at Crofton on Wells.

            2. Fox and Obel is a high-end "specialty grocery"... sort of a Dean and DeLuca type place.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Chicago Mike

                F&O has a small cafe where you can order and eat breakfast and lunch.