Three days in Chicago - lunches near the Palmer house
I'm going to be at a conference for three days in Chicago and am ready to explore all the great food I hear the city offers!
For dinner I am looking through lots of the existing threads (although any "must eat" suggestions for < $25 p.p. dinners would be welcome), but for lunch I was looking for some more specific suggestions:
The conference will be at the Palmer House, and the lunch breaks are around an hour each. I will not have a car, so I'll be on foot or using public transportation. What are three good places I could try for lunch that I wouldn't be rushed getting to/eating/getting back?
I'm looking for $15 or less for lunch, although I'd spend more one day if experiencing some place is a necessity. I'm from Southern California, so I'd steer away from Mexican only because I get it so often here, but I like almost all foods, especially ethic foods (Moroccan, Persian, and Thai in particular). Any suggestions?
Does your $25 dinner limit include drinks, tax, tip?
I know you said you eat a lot of Mexican, but I would guess that you don't eat the kind of regional Mexican cuisine that this city is known for. Consider the Rick Bayless options: Xoco for street food or Frontera Gril. Topolobambo will be out of your price range. A little bit further away (a dinner option) is Mexique. Check out the menus. Except for Xoco we're not talking about tacos or burritos.
We have good very good options for the other ethnic options you mention, but not anywhere near where you are staying. How do you feel about using public transportation?
Miller's Pub is a fun old school place that would be worthwhile for at least a drink. The food is fairly basic but they do have great old school bartenders.
The Gage is a gastropub with a wide array of great sandwiches and burgers. We had some wonderful mussels there once.
The Purple Pig is farther away but has fantastic small plates - no reservations so best to go at off hours.
I would think there must be some chicago style pizza nearby but perhaps others can make a recommendation. I do know you can generally call and order your pie in advance which would help you get out within a reasonable time frame.
The original Heaven on Seven on the 7th floor of the Garland Building, about two blocks away on Wabash. Cajun food in a rather unique spot. Gets crowded for lunch, but sit at the counter. CASH ONLY!
Jump in an 8 minute/$7 cab to ride over the river and try Slurping Turtle for lunch. It's pretty fast but you need to be there during the week by 11:40 to beat the noon rush. I had a terrific bowl of noodles with braised pork and we had crispy oysters and curried croquetes that were also really good. And if you're 10 minutes late getting back, it's worth it!