Dinner in Chicago Friday night with a 10 month old
We are staying at the Trump International Hotel & Tower, and looking for the following:
-- Restaurant near the hotel (walking distance? we are from NY, used to walking everywhere, but happy to take a cab too)
-- Any price point, any cuisine
--This is the difficult part: dinner would be 8pm, on a Friday night, with a 10 month old. Normally, we would go to dinner early (around 5), but we can't due to other commitments. We'd like to go somewhere where the baby wouldn't stick out too much, and wouldn't be an annoyance to other dinners. We are willing to go casual, but don't want to go to a chain restaurant. Maybe somewwere for deep dish?
-- Date: Friday, September 9
Thanks in advance for any ideas you may have.
For deep-dish, the original Uno and Due are both a five-minute walk northwest, and their pizza is still excellent (unlike their franchise location counterparts). However, you can expect quite a wait on a Friday evening at prime time.
Another possibility is the cafe in the rear of Fox & Obel, which is a ten minute walk east. It's our premier upscale grocery (think Balducci's, Dean & Deluca, etc), and the cafe in the rear is ultra casual. You can get anything there from a cup of coffee to a complete meal prepared to order.
How well behaved is the baby? Some babies cry or scream or create quite a mess with their food, while others may not be a bother at all, in which case you can take them anywhere...
619 N Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
29 E Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60611
Fox & Obel Food Market
401 E Illinois St, Chicago, IL 60611
For the pizza places, I would put a call into the concierge at the Trump. I know several hotels offer "get in the front of the line" coupons at their concierge desks. I imagine that the Trump can...trump.... that. Once you get past the lines, put your order in immediately because they do take 30 - 45 mins to cook. Also, deep dish pizza carries well into the next day so if worse comes to worse and you have to bring the pizza back to your room, it will still taste pretty darn good.
Yes, you can carry out from Uno or Due, and from the other Chicago pizza places.
The other places for deep-dish allow you to phone ahead with your pizza order for dining in, to avoid waiting 30-45 minutes while you're there. But I've heard that the downtown Uno and Due no longer do this. I'm sure they let you phone ahead for a carry-out, though.
I would look at some of the restaurants on the Riverwalk. For example, try O'Brien's. Not the best, most innovative food but easy distance from Trump and being outside is great distraction for a 10 month-er. Lots of space to walk him/her too. My niece is 10 months and a lot of time when we go out, she gets restless and wants to look around and "talks" loud. Being outside helps with that.
Wildfire on Erie is pretty family friendly. You won't get sneered at there. Cuisine is moderately upscale American grilled, pretty solid. About a 10 min walk from hotel. Nicer than the pizza places. Attractive interior.
Other nearby places that are family friendly include Maggiano's and Grand Lux Cafe. I know, they're chains, but they are places where I've seen plenty of families with children and infants. And the food is pretty good (Maggiano's has my favorite salads anywhere).
One other comment - I've seen lots of families with small children at Sunday brunch, just about anywhere that serves it.
Maggiano's Little Italy
516 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60610
Grand Lux Cafe'
600 N Michigan Ave Ste 7, Chicago, IL 60611