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Any decent & inexpensive food near the Navy Pier

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I'll be attending a conference on the Navy Pier, most of it is catered, but I'd like to grab a real Chicago hot dog while I'm there. I'm staying there as well, so cool stuff in the vacity. More real "chowhound" food vs. hoity toity joints as I'm on a budget.

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  1. I'd just be interested in knowing where to go for good lunches under 12 bucks around this area, seems like everything is more on this end of downtown.

    1. A little farther west is Boston Blackies. Excellent burgers.
      164 E. Grand Ave

      Fox and Obel has a cafe.

      Unfortunately, that's all I can think of now. I'm never around Navy Pier.

      For good hotdogs, try Portillo's.

      1. Greektown is known for it's great cheap eats and it's only a short cabride west of Navy Pier. Try Greek Islands and Rodity's for the lower priced but totally delicious eats!
        Mr.J's on State and Pearson for a pretty decent fast food burger or polish.
        Portillo's has very good beef sandwiches.
        Al's Beef on Ontario as well for Beef sandwiches.
        Mr. Beef downtown is quite good as well...popular with celebs.
        Reza's for reasonably priced Persian food. Pretty good lunch buffet and weekend brunch.
        Wishbone for great Mexican and Cajun inspired breakfast and lunch.
        Le Peep for Southwestern style breakfast and lunch.
        Lou Malnati's for a personal size Chicago Deepdish pizza. The thin variety is quite good as well.
        Due's on Ohio at Wabash for a fantastic deepdish pizza.

        5 Replies
        1. re: amoncada

          Ooh thanks! That is exactly what I was looking for. I'm going to print out the list & stick it in my wallet.

          1. re: RaleighRocker

            Great list from amoncada. A couple of comments:

            A round trip cab to most of these places will cost you a good $15 from Navy Pier. Navy Pier is kind of out there on its own. Boston Blackies and Fox and Obel are much closer. Expecially Fox and Obel - although it really more of a grocery store with lots of prepared foods than a restaurant (there is a small cafe).

            There are a bunch of Portillos in the Chicago area. The one you want is 100 W Ontario. Its also a good place to try te Chicago style hot dog.

            Personally I'm no fan of Reza's. I would go to Kan Zaman areound 600 N. Wells St. - Lebanese restaurant. A bar with good food on Wells St. is the Pepper Cannister.

            I would call Wishbone Soul Food, not Mexican or Cajun, although there is Cajun influence, but at any rate its good.

            There is also a decent inexpensive sushi bar not too far from Navy Pier - Ginza Fish house, 19 E. Ohio. The food is also not bad at Rockit Bar. Very trendy place, but its good for lunch.

            If you are stuck eating on Navy Pier itself, I think that Charley's Ale House is probalby your best bet.

            1. re: wak

              Yes, cabs will cost you a couple of bucks or just walk. I like Kan Zaman but it's cost a little more than Reza's Persian Lunch Buffet...I think. Reza's is quiet good in the Cheaper Eats category of which the Poster is looking for. My favorite for Persian is Noon O Kabab but it's just too far.
              Yeah, Wishbone would probably be best described as, "southern food".

              1. re: amoncada

                I used to be more of a Reza fan, but the last couple times I went it seemed to be coming apart a little. Food was still OK, but they seemed to just be going through the motions. It seemed a little disorganized. Then I found Kan Zaman and I never had reason to go back to Reza.

                I had not heard of Noon O Kabab, but it looks good. I'll need to put it on my to Do list next time I'm in the area.

            2. re: RaleighRocker

              Glad you like my list. Sharing a cab with your colleages will certainly diminish the cost of cabbing around the city.