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Feb 23, 2012 04:32 PM

Soup and other tips for June trip

Hi all,

For years I've dreamed of visiting Chicago and at last it's coming true this June! We're staying at the Palomar and going to two Cubs v. Red Sox games. I've read through a lot of threads on here but could use a little advice foodwise.

Already have a dinner reservation (Wow, made a June reservation in February!) for The Girl & The Goat for the night we arrive, so that's set. I figure it will be a cool way to start off the trip.

The next two nights we have ballgames at Wrigley Field. Other than hot dogs is there anything noteworthy to eat there? At Fenway Park, the only food I really like is the kettle corn and at Yankees Stadium - the Lobel's steak sandwich. Sometimes it's better to just eat ahead of time and bring snacks. What do you recommend?

For our one other dinner I've looked at a lot of menus and am thinking either Table 52 or Piccolo Sogno. Any other suggestions? Price not an object, but we don't eat seafood, offal, foie gras or truffles. My husband would prefer not to wear a jacket.

Breakfast - Sable adjacent to our hotel looks possible for maybe one breakfast, but we tend to be more grab and walk types. Pick up a muffin, bagel, fruit, some bacon and a beverage and keep moving.

For lunch, maybe a dog or Italian Beef (Portillo's or somewhere else?), or perhaps deep dish pizza (Lou Malnati's, Gino's East?). In addition to baseball, I would like to visit the Museum of Science and Industry, Art Institute of Chicago Museum, and just do a general tour...walking , etc.. to see and enjoy the city itself. So lunch spots in those areas would be helpful. Nothing fancy.

At this point I would like to mention soup. I love it. Especially Gazpacho, French Onion, beef, chicken, or vegetable soups. Ones with good homemade stocks. Not so much creamy or milk-based ones. Any recommendations for places that serve good soup? Takeout is ok.

Thanks for any help and tips. Appreciate it. Really looking forward to this trip!

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  1. Jackets are required in only a handful of restaurants (and you can freely push the envelope if you're wearing one, on a recent visit to Alinea they seated a group where the men wore jackets & jeans), Otherwise you can dress casually pretty much anywhere.

    1. Before/after your dinner at Girl & the Goat, stop by The Aviary for some experimental/avant-garde cocktails. It's about a 5-10 minute walk.

      We had weekday breakfast at Sable on a previous trip; really boring, I'd rather have gone elsewhere instead.

      Maybe Xoco, it is quite close to the Hotel Palomar. Pick up a churro or pastry, some hot chocolate, and keep walking, if you want. Or sit down and try the French toast or chilaquiles.

      Save Sable for cocktails and snacks instead.

      Speaking of Xoco, why no Bayless restaurants on your itinerary? Frontera Grill, if you don't eat seafood? You're planning far enough in advance that you can snag one of their coveted reservations for dinner.

      Not a whole lot around MSI, but I have stopped and eaten in Chinatown on the way back north.

      Art Institute is near the Loop, lots of options around there, so it really depends what you're looking for.

      1 Reply
      1. re: kathryn

        Thanks for the tips Kathryn. Aviary sounds great for cocktails. I think we'll skip Sable for breakfast then. Honestly I would rather just grab and go.

        I did check out the Frontera and Topolobampo menus when first planning this trip. I'm not really a fan of Mexican food, but I hold Bayless in high regard, and admire his use of fresh ingredients. I would just hate to waste money on a cuisine I don't really appreciate or like and possibly take a coveted table away from someone who would love it.

        I like the menu for RPM Italian which just opened, and knowing that bad boy chef Doug Psaltis is there, that may fit the bill. Did not get a chance to dine at his spots when he was a chef in New York City. Allium's menu is also appealing to me.

        Chicago has a huge number of great-sounding restaurants. Impressive.

      2. When at the Museum of Science and Industry stop in at Z & H (Zaleski and Horvath Cafe) on 57th Street in Hyde Park. They have a substantial sandwich menu along with soups and salads. The place is casual and if you are there on a day with good weather, take your food around the back and sit on the patio.