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Sep 23, 2007 09:06 PM

~Fly-by-night CRAZY trip from MSP to Chi: HELP!~

Hubby and I are making a CRAZY road trip from MSP to Chicago.

Our very favorite band in the whole world is playing a rare mid-week date in Chicago - and we live in MSP. They don't come here often (they're from Australia) and we're determined to see them.

So we're working until noon the day of their show...a Wednesday; then hitting the road. We'll get into Chicago around 6 or 7PM. They hit the stage around 9PM.

We will hit the road back home as soon as they are done playing, and drive all night, getting home in time for a sleepy/happy day at work Thursday morning. I know, we're nuts. But we just *hafta* do it!

Any suggestions about:

1) a good, quick dinner in Chicago near Schuba's (3159 N. Southport)

2) Hounds' fave places to stop on the road betwixt MSP and Chicago!

TIA for your ideas!

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  1. Chicago is in the Midwest, but they have their own board, Chicago Area. For the Chi town recs you may want post there as well. My knowledge of the route and
    Chicago is so dated as to be useless, but Saveur magazine's latest issue is all Chicago and could be a great resource for you this week.

    Bon Voyage! Bon Appetit!

    1. Mellu-
      It's a long haul down 94 to get to Chi-town. I make the drive frequently, and haven't had a lot of success finding non-fast food restaurants that aren't too far off the highway. The one we've found that's usually pretty good is Norke Nook in Ossseo, WI. The exit is well marked and the restaurant is only a mile or so off 94. Here's their web site-

      The food is solid, a mix of american favorites and norweigan fare. Some of the lefse-wraps are pretty good. The soups are home-made and so are the rolls. The main reason we stop there is the pies, they're wonderful and freshly- made. The raspberry sourcream pie is amazing!
      Good luck!

      1. I drive this a lot, and just stop once for food. For me, like for Spunky Monkey, it's Osseo. I always get a half of a hot-beef sandwich. When it is hot enough (most times) the gravy is the closest thing that I have had to the gravy that my mom used to make. Then I get one piece of pie to go, grab a plastic fork, and I have my snack for later. I also am partial to the raspberry sourcream pie.

        Madison has great restaurants, but there is nothing I can think of that is close to the Interstate, and it sounds like you don't have time to head downtown.

        1. I like the Norske Nook for pie. The food can be pretty bad.

          In Camp Douglas, German Haus is just off the highway. Pretty good German food. Even better is Essen Haus in the Dells. Also in the Dells is the Cheese Factory, the best restaurant on this road.

          1. This is not as unique or special as some other places, but it may fit into your schedule as a quick stop...

            The Taco John's in Menomonie (like an hour from msp) has a pick your own salsa bar with 5-6 kinds of fresh salsa. It's maybe 3 blocks south of 94 at the main Menomonie exit.

            Growing up in a small town, Taco John's was some of the only fast food I thought tasted good (they actually season their meat).. so it's my & my husband's default road trip quick stop. I was oh so pleasantly suprised to have a buffet of at my fingertips at this location (never seen it before).. so even if you don't like the fast food Taco stuff you can at least enjoy the salsa =)