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Client heading to town. Need to shamelessly kiss his A**

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I'm an ex-ORD hound (aslo ex-sous at Trotters), current LAX hound, with a client from SFO heading to ORD. OK, WTF?

Anyway, they're staying in the Gold Coast on No. Mich. Ave. They would probably prefer to travel not much more than a short (10 min. or so) cab ride from there.

Not looking to start, yet another lengthy debate. Mostly off the cuff thoughts. The ** category, and the "Old Chicago Standards" seems to be where my list is light.

Can you help Phil N the Blanks ( who remembers them?).

Just looking for a comprehensive short list. Then they can do they're own due diligence from there.

**** / $$$$:
Alinea (Grant Achatz)
Trotters (Charlie Trotters)
Tru

*** / $$$:
Blackbird
Avec
Naha
Publican
Spiaggia
Quartino
Cite
Topolobambo (Rick Bayless)
Graham Elliot

** / $$:
Frontera Grill (Rick Bayless)

Old Chicago Standards:
Mortons (Steak of course)
Gibsons (again Steaks)

Chicago Style Pizza:
Lou Malnatis
Pizzaria Uno
Pizzaria Due
Giordanos

Thanks so much.

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  1. for $$$$, i would add L2O.

    Avec and Quartino are actually more like $$. they're really not that pricey. for the same category, i'd also add province, sepia, and osteria via stato.

    i would add cibo matto, il mulino and carnivale to $$$ .

    1. Other "Old Chicago Standards" worth a shot (better, I think than Morton's or Gibson's)
      Everest
      Spiaggia
      Cafe Spiaggia

      1. Cafe Spiaggia = yes.
        Spiaggia = hell no.

        1. Thanks for the input so far, either my list is right on, or the post falls under, "not another list of"...

          Thanks either way.

          2 Replies
          1. re: WileysHungryAgain

            The list looks comprehensive to me, including everyone's recs. Anything else specific you are looking for?

            1. re: WileysHungryAgain

              For steak, I would definitely consider David Burke's Primehouse, especially if you care about quality service and a real wine list.
              I would also add Avenues to the $$$$ category. Depending on your guest, I think Alinea could be a bit challenging for some non-foodies, while Avenues would provide some of that creative technique and wow factor while being a bit more approachable. I would definitely rather go there than Tru. Best service I have ever had.