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Suggestions, Comments, Help in Chicago and Evanston

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My wife and I will be in Chicago for 4 days with a 2 year old. We wanted somewhat casual, great food but 2 year old friendly. Then we move on to Madison with a short lunch stop in Evanston.

Below are the restaurants we chose for Chicago:

Bistrot Margot
Greek Islands Restaurant in Greektown
West Town Tavern
Trattoria #10 - Bar Buffet

Any suggestions, comments and/or help would be great!

We have nothing scheduled for Evanston. Any suggestions? Again, a casual lunch place with wonderful food at a decent price.

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    1. Greek Islands is perfect for what you are looking for, casual, busy and loud (therefore good for bringing a 2 year old).

      I'm not a big fan of Bistrot Margot. Some other options in the same neighborhood that are casual and reasonably kid-friendly (at least as much as BM) are:
      - Old Jerusalem - very casual Middle Eastern food, with a nice outdoor seating area
      - Kamehachi - mostly sushi, but non-sushi Japanese also. The space is a little tight which can be hard with a kid, but the food is good and the service is friendly.
      - Trattoria Roma - decent Italian food, homey atmosphere.

      Evanston lunch options - none of these are in downtown Evanston (most of my favorites there are not open for lunch), but these are all yummy options:
      - Firehouse Grill - good food in an old firehouse building.
      - Bling Faith Cafe - good vegetarian food.
      - Lucky Platter - quirky place with good diner-style food. The corn-flake crusted french toast is great.

      4 Replies
      1. re: SuzMiCo

        "- Bling Faith Cafe - good vegetarian food."

        That would be Blind Faith Cafe, unless they adopted a new jewelry requirement since the last time I visited...

        1. re: LabRat

          Ha! That'll teach me to post without proofreading.

          1. re: SuzMiCo

            I agree with two of SuzMiCo's suggestions (I haven't been as impressed with Firehouse Grill). Here are website addresses for more info (I don't know of one for FG):
            Blind Faith - www.blindfaithcafe.com
            Lucky Platter - www.luckyplatterrestaurant.com

            Here are more places I recommend that meet what you're looking for; all are in downtown Evanston, except Lupita's, which is on Main Street:
            Bat 17 (deli sandwiches, salads, etc) - www.bat17evanston.com
            Dixie Kitchen (Cajun)
            Giordano's (deep-dish pizza) - www.giordanos.com
            Le Peep (breakfasty items) - www.lepeep.com
            Lou Malnati's (deep-dish pizza) - www.loumalnatis.com
            Lupita's (Mexican) - www.lupitasmexicanrestaurant.com
            Thai Sookdee (Thai, downtown) - www.thaisookdee.com

            One more place that's a real institution in the area is Walker Brothers Pancake House. It's actually in Wilmette, just over the town line from Evanston. This is NOT your typical pancake house!!! Everything there is wonderful, and you can't miss their heavenly cinnamon-soaked apple pancake. www.walkerbrosoph.com

            If carry-out food works for where you'll be, there's a little hole-in-the-wall place called Al's Deli, on Noyes St. They make nice sandwiches to go (also wonderful homemade cookies) and it's a real Evanston institution. It's a small storefront (with about 3 tiny tables) and is closed on Wednesdays. Don't mind the lines at lunchtime; it's worth it.

          2. My vote would go to Lucky Platter in Evanston, it is a one of a kind place with excellent food-- I can't quite agree with whomever called it diner food-- maybe diner food with a twist? Quirky, and the food lives up to the decor.