HOME > Chowhound > Chicago Area >

Discussion

Advice on weekend itinerary

My husband & I will be in Chicago for a long weekend and would love to get some advice on our itinerary. We're from San Francisco and will be staying at the Hyatt Regency. We don't know whether we'll have a car or not, but most likely not.

WHAT WE LIKE:
- Hubby: Loves gastropubs, big strong flavors, spicy foods, & sweets/desserts
- Me: Street food, unique/different flavors. Price/quality ratio is a big factor in my enjoyment of food -- I don't mind paying if the food is tasty & interesting (re: Alinea) but if I think the food is just okay or way overpriced for what you get, that ticks me off (sorry my pet peeve!).

THURSDAY EVE:
We plan on having dinner at Purple Pig but the wait scares me as we probably won't get there til about 8pm. Can you suggest a backup plan in case the wait is too crazy? Seems both Mercat de la Planxa and Piccolo Sogno have open tables -- would one be better than the other? Or maybe other suggestions closer to Purple Pig?

FRIDAY:
Right now we plan on meeting some friends and having a late-ish (1.30) lunch at Hot Doug's, but our dinner reservation at Next isn't til 10.15pm. Should we go to Next pretty hungry & thirsty, or is it okay to get a snack/drinks beforehand? If snack/drinks around 7.30/8pm are okay, what are some good choices either near our hotel or near the restaurant? We can also go a bit further away as we're thinking of maybe renting a car for the day since Hot Doug's is pretty far from the hotel.

SATURDAY:
We gotta be tourists and get pizza (last time we tried Gino's East), so this time we're going for lunch to Giordano's for their stuffed crust. We have reservations for the Aviary @6pm and plan on getting dinner afterwards. Unfortunately the Publican is closed for a private event that night and there are no tables available at the Girl and the Goat. How is La Sirena, is that an interesting enough choice for us (though their no reservations policy worries me as we'll be a party of six)? Or perhaps there are other good choices nearby or a short taxi away? We don't want anything too fancy (such as Grace or Tru) as we're in a group, and ideally a place where we can make reservations.

SUNDAY:
We have tickets for Book of Mormon at 2pm so are looking for a great brunch spot near our hotel or the theatre. Any ideas? For dinner we have reservations at the Publican.

Probably no Mexican or Asian suggestions please, unless it's really unique, since we have quite a few choices here in SF and we went to Topolobamo last time (plus we just got back from Mexico).

We're super excited about our trip and appreciate any advice we can get! Thanks!!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. You have done well with your planning.
    For snacks before Next, I would recommend Vera.
    Giordano's went downhill quite some time ago. I would recommend Malnati's, Due, or Pizano's instead.

    5 Replies
    1. re: camusman

      I have to agree about Giordano's especially the one on Rush & Superior. Avoid.

      1. re: HoosierFoodie

        That's not the location nearest the OP's hotel.

        The Giordano's pizza I've had recently (at other locations) is as good as it's ever been.

        1. re: nsxtasy

          Regardless of location, I think there are better alternatives for "Chicago" pizza.

          1. re: HoosierFoodie

            I think Giordano's stuffed pizza is delicious. It's also one of the two styles of thick-crust pizza that are unique to Chicago and our national reputation for great pizza. That makes it the perfect choice for the OP, who has tried the "pan pizza" style of deep-dish at Gino's East on a previous trip and who has already stated that this is what they want to try.

            1. re: HoosierFoodie

              I heartily agree, HF, but of course it's a matter of personal taste.

      2. >> We plan on having dinner at Purple Pig but the wait scares me as we probably won't get there til about 8pm. Can you suggest a backup plan in case the wait is too crazy? Seems both Mercat de la Planxa and Piccolo Sogno have open tables -- would one be better than the other? Or maybe other suggestions closer to Purple Pig?

        You can count on the wait around 8 pm to be 90-120 minutes, possibly more. If that's objectionable, then instead you should make a reservation somewhere else, rather than hoping for an unlikely short wait and getting stuck with no alternatives. If I were you, I would make Purple Pig a lunch stop rather than dinner, since they have the same menu all day, and waits at lunchtime aren't as bad as dinner. I would substitute it in your itinerary for Hot Doug's, which involves its own lengthy waits as well as long travel time.

        Places in the vicinity of your hotel where you could have a great dinner where they accept advance reservations include Sable (contemporary American small plates, craft cocktails), GT Fish & Oyster (seafood small plates, craft cocktails), Piccolo Sogno Due (Italian), and Naha (contemporary American). Mercat a la Planxa (tapas) is good too but it's about a mile south of the hotel. For Italian, I would suggest Piccolo Sogno Due rather than Piccolo Sogno because the former is closer to your hotel. (The food and quality at both is similar to each other.)

        >> Right now we plan on meeting some friends and having a late-ish (1.30) lunch at Hot Doug's, but our dinner reservation at Next isn't til 10.15pm. Should we go to Next pretty hungry & thirsty, or is it okay to get a snack/drinks beforehand? If snack/drinks around 7.30/8pm are okay, what are some good choices either near our hotel or near the restaurant? We can also go a bit further away as we're thinking of maybe renting a car for the day since Hot Doug's is pretty far from the hotel.

        With 8-9 hours between meals, you could have a full lunch anywhere without worrying about your appetite for dinner. Each dinner at Next is different; I haven't been there for their current menu, but the one I had there ("childhood") did not leave me feeling stuffed.

        If I were you, I'd skip Hot Doug's and do the Purple Pig for a late lunch instead. At 1:30 or so you can walk right in at the Purple Pig without any wait at all. The food is excellent, much much better than Hot Doug's. And you won't have the long waits or the excessive travel time of Hot Doug's - or the cost of a rental car and the time to check it in and out. (And if you really want dogs/sausages without the hassle, consider instead Franks 'n Dawgs. Or, if you're just looking for Chicago-style hot dogs, Portillo's, which is a 10-minute walk from your hotel.)

        >> We gotta be tourists and get pizza (last time we tried Gino's East), so this time we're going for lunch to Giordano's for their stuffed crust.

        Great choice! Giordano's is an entirely different type of pizza, as you already understand. And theirs is the best stuffed pizza in town, like it has been for years. Yes, the places with "pan pizza" - Lou Malnati's, Pizano's, and Uno/Due - are excellent too. But if you'd like to try something different from Gino's East, then do Giordano's.

        >> We have reservations for the Aviary @6pm and plan on getting dinner afterwards. Unfortunately the Publican is closed for a private event that night and there are no tables available at the Girl and the Goat. How is La Sirena, is that an interesting enough choice for us (though their no reservations policy worries me as we'll be a party of six)? Or perhaps there are other good choices nearby or a short taxi away? We don't want anything too fancy (such as Grace or Tru) as we're in a group, and ideally a place where we can make reservations.

        One casual, moderately-priced (and often overlooked) place in that vicinity is La Sardine. It's a French bistro, with conventional bistro fare. Not particularly unusual, but what they do, they do extremely well. Don't miss their souffles for dessert!

        >> We have tickets for Book of Mormon at 2pm so are looking for a great brunch spot near our hotel or the theatre. Any ideas? For dinner we have reservations at the Publican.

        One of the very best brunches in the city is only a few blocks from your hotel: Shaw's Crab House. They do an all-you-can-eat buffet. Outstanding items include caramelized thick-cut bacon, crab cakes, king crab and shrimp cocktails, creme brulee, and chocolate pot de creme. Last time I went it was $48/pp so it's not inexpensive, but it's terrific as long as you enjoy seafood. They accept advance reservations and I recommend making one if you go, as they do get busy; I've actually seen them turn down walk-ins when they have filled with reservations for brunch.

        For a brunch that's not quite so ample or expensive, consider Atwood Cafe, in the Hotel Burnham, about halfway from your hotel to the theater. South Water Kitchen is another brunch option near your hotel. Both accept reservations, which would be a good idea.

        1. I've always gone to Next having had a snack beforehand (Paris, Thailand, elBulli, Sicily, Kyoto). You'll be fine as long as you don't overdo it.

          Having stayed at the Monaco, I can say that South Water Kitchen is only OK at best.

          1 Reply
          1. re: kathryn

            >> Having stayed at the Monaco, I can say that South Water Kitchen is only OK at best.

            I agree. But it's close by, it's open for Sunday brunch, and they accept reservations. It would be my third choice of the three places I mentioned.

          2. Wow, what awesome suggestions, thanks so much!

            I'll need to talk to hubby about dropping Hot Doug's as he has his heart set on eating there. Last trip we dropped by when had a car but were shocked at the line and bailed -- we've been kicking ourselves since. Agree that the food probably isn't great but the weird types of hot dogs (foie gras, etc.) appeals to the cheesy tourist in us :)

            How would you rank these restaurants as dinner recommendations for an out-of-towner that's looking for something good for groups and really tasty, with bonus points for unique/different and close to our hotel or to the Aviary? But regarding distance: as long as it's within a $15 cab ride from our hotel we can deal with it -- we're willing to travel for good food :)

            - Sable (though I really disliked the chef on Top Chef)
            - Piccolo Sogno Due (thanks for the tip that 1&2 are the same -- I had read somewhere that the original was better)
            - Mercat la Planxa (maybe overpriced for what you get?)
            - La Sirena
            - David Burke's Primehouse
            - Takashi (maybe too fancy?)
            - Perennial Virant
            - Something else?

            I'm not sure about going all out for brunch at the Crab House -- $48 is more expensive than the dinner buffets at the Bellagio or Wynn in Las Vegas!

            3 Replies
            1. re: PekoePeony

              >> I'll need to talk to hubby about dropping Hot Doug's as he has his heart set on eating there. Last trip we dropped by when had a car but were shocked at the line and bailed -- we've been kicking ourselves since. Agree that the food probably isn't great but the weird types of hot dogs (foie gras, etc.) appeals to the cheesy tourist in us :)

              Then you're already aware of the travel time and waiting time issues. If you still want to do it, decide how you're going to use that rental car for the day. If you're only going to use it to get to and from Hot Doug's, a cab may be cheaper (approx $25 with tip each way)

              >> How would you rank these restaurants as dinner recommendations for an out-of-towner that's looking for something good for groups and really tasty, with bonus points for unique/different and close to our hotel or to the Aviary? But regarding distance: as long as it's within a $15 cab ride from our hotel we can deal with it -- we're willing to travel for good food :)

              >> - Sable (though I really disliked the chef on Top Chef)

              Sable is my favorite restaurant in all of downtown Chicago. (I'm sure you know that they can edit television shows to make someone seem like a saint or a villain to increase viewer interest and ratings. Chef Terhune is very involved in the community and in various non-profit endeavors. And most nights you can watch her in the open kitchen, chopping and prepping alongside her staff.) There are many people here who love Sable, as well as a few that don't, just like every other restaurant in Chicago. Almost everything is available in half portions, so you can try a lot of different things. I've loved just about everything I've eaten there. Standouts include the sweet corn creme brulee, the duck sausage with pistachio, and whatever flavor panna cotta they have that day. The fact that the food is so reasonably priced is just icing on the cake. Also, if you enjoy craft cocktails, the mixology team is one of the best in the city.

              >> - Piccolo Sogno Due (thanks for the tip that 1&2 are the same -- I had read somewhere that the original was better)

              Everyone has his/her opinions. I've eaten at each at least twice, and they are very very similar in quality IMHO. The only difference I've observed, other than location, is that the menu at PS Due has more seafood options.

              >> - Mercat la Planxa (maybe overpriced for what you get?)

              I don't think so. Last time I was there, I spent around $75/pp for dinner including moderate alcohol and tax/tip, which isn't all that much. But it may be slightly more than some of our other tapas places, like the no-reservations Cafe Iberico.

              I like the food there, but more so for being unusual than for being delicious, if that makes sense.

              >> - La Sirena

              Haven't been there, sorry.

              >> - David Burke's Primehouse

              Burke's is one of the best steakhouses in town. I like it also because it's more contemporary, rather than the "men's club" atmosphere at many other steakhouses, and because the menu has more variety beyond the steaks. However, to me the real question is, do you really want to go to a steakhouse while you're here, given that every major city has excellent steakhouses? My advice: If you love steaks beyond other types of food, by all means go, but if you love things that show a bit more variety and creativity, then maybe not. HTH

              >> - Takashi (maybe too fancy?)

              Not too fancy. It's a nice place; typical attire is "business casual", the same as what you'd typically see at Burke's, Mercat a la Planxa, and Piccolo Sogno Due.

              I wasn't all that impressed with my last dinner there. Everything was just okay, and nothing really wowed me at all.

              >> - Perennial Virant

              Perennial Virant is a very good place with a small plates menu, from one of our most talented chefs. Because of the small plates emphasis, it's a bit less expensive than Takashi or Burke's. It's also much more casual; you'll see plenty of people in blue jeans. In both regards, it's similar to Sable.

              If I had to rank the places you've mentioned that I've been to based on how much I loved/liked them, it would be (1) Sable (2) Piccolo Sogno Due (3) Perennial Virant (4) David Burke's Primehouse (5) Mercat a la Planxa. All of these are very good (and I don't think you can go wrong with any of them), but they're very different *kinds* of places, so if you want a really good steak, or if you absolutely love Italian food... well, you know what I'm saying.

              >> - Something else?

              Chicago has literally hundreds of excellent places. We already discussed Purple Pig, above. I mentioned GT Fish & Oyster, for seafood small plates and craft cocktails; it's excellent, and trendy too. I also mentioned Naha; Naha is a "finer dining" type place, with a James Beard Award-winning chef and a lot of creativity, but with somewhat moderate pricing (figure $100-125/pp with tax/tip and moderate alcohol) and somewhat casual attire (not denim, but a notch down from business casual). Another place I didn't mention yet is North Pond; like Naha, it's a "finer dining" type place in the same price range, with a James Beard Award-winning chef and a lot of creativity. North Pond is also notable for its exquisite setting in the middle of Lincoln Park; it faces its namesake pond with the city skyline looming over the opposite shore, and occupies a renovated building that was once a warming shelter for ice skaters on the pond. The setting is absolutely stunning. If you don't get to North Pond, it would also make a great place for Sunday brunch (prix fixe $33). Note that North Pond is about 3 miles north of your hotel, an easy cab ride. (Sable, David Burke's, GT Fish, and Naha are all 5-15 minutes walk from your hotel. None of these is in the West Loop where the Aviary is, a mile or so west of the hotel.)

              >> I'm not sure about going all out for brunch at the Crab House -- $48 is more expensive than the dinner buffets at the Bellagio or Wynn in Las Vegas!

              Well, I'm betting they don't have thick-cut bacon, crab cakes, crab legs and shrimp cocktail, or creme brulee that can compare with Shaw's; all these items at Shaw's are as good as anyplace in Chicago. It's worth $48 if you think of it as an inexpensive dinner rather than an expensive brunch. But if you're only going to eat the breakfast-type foods, you may be better off going elsewhere. Feel free to compare the menus on their websites for Shaw's, North Pond, and other brunches to help you decide.

              1. re: PekoePeony

                The food at Hot Doug's is quite good. My kid and I are partial to the duck fat fries (available Friday and Saturday). And most of those "weird" hot dogs are delicious. Worth the effort, especially if your husband is counting on it.

                1. re: camusman

                  Ah, thanks for reminding me to comment on the food there, which I neglected to do. I think the food is okay - not terrible, not great, and IMHO certainly not worth spending $50 for a car rental or cabs, or the 2-3 hours in time getting there and back and waiting in line while on a short visit here. But it can be a fun experience to go and chat with the tourists while waiting in line with them, see where they're all from, laugh with each other about waiting in a line that long for hot dogs, etc. And Doug himself is very friendly, it's fun to watch him kibbutz with everyone. And when it's all said and done, you'll be able to say that you went there, regardless of whether or not you thought the food was anything great. I found it to be one of those "gotta go see what it's like, tried it, no need to go back" kind of places. If you've never been and you're dying to go, then by all means you should try it and see for yourself whether *you* think it deserves all the hype. As for the food, I love seared foie gras, but I wasn't all that impressed with Hot Doug's foie dog, which uses chunks of foie gras torchon. I also found that I didn't like the duck fat fries as much as the regular fries (not that their regular fries are any better than elsewhere, either). If you go, I recommend ordering both types of fries side by side to see which you prefer; you might be surprised.

              2. A few thoughts:

                You could move Giordano's to Sunday, call ahead to order, and you'll be pretty close to the theatre. There's two locations in the loop, i believe.

                And then you can do a great brunch on Saturday and not be crunched for time. Most of the great breakfast and brunches I've had in Chicago are not downtown. And may require a wait. Where else do you plan to be on Saturday?

                Or you could so brunch at The Gage instead and keep Giordano's for Sat lunch.

                After the Aviary, maybe Maude's Liquor Bar? They take reservations for 6 but it sounds like you want a prime time slot, so I'm not sure how booked up they are on your desired Saturday night. Nellcote is around there too. They're both on OpenTable but I'm not sure if they put all their tables online, so it wouldn't hurt to call as well.

                I actually loved the sausages at Hot Doug's, both the sausages themselves and the creative toppings. And since you're from the foie gras deprived state of California, you might as well try the foie dog while you're there. I usually prefer hot foie but I loved his foie dog. The duck fat fries just tasted like normal fries to me, though.

                4 Replies
                1. re: kathryn

                  >> You could move Giordano's to Sunday, call ahead to order, and you'll be pretty close to the theatre. There's two locations in the loop, i believe.

                  The location in the Prudential building (130 E. Randolph) is two blocks south of the Hyatt Regency and on your way to the theater.

                  Calling ahead with your pizza order - which can be done at Giordano's as well as Malnati's, Pizano's, and Gino's East - is a good idea, even if you're dining in. They can have your pizza ready at the time you specify, and that way you won't have to wait 30-45 minutes while seated for your pizza to bake.

                  >> And then you can do a great brunch on Saturday and not be crunched for time. Most of the great breakfast and brunches I've had in Chicago are not downtown. And may require a wait.

                  This is another option, and it all depends on which way you want to go. Chicago has some terrific breakfast-focused restaurants, such as Jam, M. Henry/M. Henrietta, Bongo Room, Southport Grocery, etc. As kathryn notes, they are not downtown (Bongo Room in the South Loop and in Wicker Park is the closest), and they do not take reservations. As a result, they typically have no waits on weekdays, and 30-60 minute waits on weekends between 9:30 and 1:00. And of course, there's the travel time to get there. They are certainly an option, one that involves some really creative food. (There are also some breakfast-focused restaurants near the hotel, including Yolk, Eggsperience, and Eggy's, but IMHO they are not as creative or unusual as the ones some distance away.)

                  The other option for brunch are places that accept reservations, which are not breakfast-specific. Since you had asked about brunch convenient to your hotel, these are the ones that predominate in the discussion so far. Most, including Shaw's and North Pond, only serve brunch on Sundays; some others, including Atwood Cafe and Perennial Virant, serve brunch on Saturdays as well as Sundays.

                  Jam may be the best of our creative breakfast restaurants; it's the kind of place a truly creative haute cuisine type chef would open for breakfast. If I were you, I would consider going there for breakfast/brunch, maybe late morning on Friday when the waits shouldn't be a problem. From the Hyatt Regency, you can walk to State and Lake, where you can take the CTA Blue Line towards O'Hare to the Logan Square stop, a couple blocks from the restaurant. (If you did this on Friday, you could still do brunch on Sunday at a place that takes reservations, prior to your theater matinee.) If you want to try one of our other breakfast-focused places, you can get to M. Henrietta by taking the CTA Red Line north from State/Lake to the Granville stop, and to Bongo Room by taking the CTA Red Line south from State/Lake to the Roosevelt/12th stop.

                  As usual in Chicago, there are many great restaurants and many ways to structure an itinerary. Feel free to think about it, and if you change your mind, to post a revised itinerary here for review.

                  1. re: nsxtasy

                    Ah, so many choices, so little time!

                    Moving Giordano's to Sunday is a good idea, especially since on Saturday we're joined by friends who are bringing their kids, so we definitely want to go to a place that takes reservations. For ourselves, we're also leaning towards biting the bullet and renting a car for our whole trip; normally it would be a no-brainer except that parking at the Hyatt is crazy expensive :(

                    Right now the itinerary is:

                    THURSDAY:
                    - Arrive early afternoon
                    - Art Institute of Chicago (my fav museum in the world! But then again I grew up in Indiana so part of it could be nostalgia)
                    - If we're able to move our Second City tickets to 8pm this day, then we'll have a late dinner at the Girl & the Goat. Otherwise we'll try for dinner at Purple Pig, and if the wait is crazy, our backup is Sable

                    FRIDAY:
                    - Chicago Architecture walking tour if we get up in time and it's not too cold
                    - Snack at Al's Beef while driving to Midway
                    - Lunch at Hot Doug's (agree it's likely a do-it-once place but we gotta get around to the once sometime)
                    - Snack/drinks at Purple Pig, Sable or the Violet Hour depending on the time and what we did on Thursday
                    - Late dinner at Next

                    SATURDAY:
                    - Brunch at either Gage, Sable, Perennial Virant or Atwood Cafe. Which of these has the tastiest brunch?
                    - If we can't move our Second City tickets, then show @4pm
                    - Dinner, most likely at Piccolo Sogno
                    - Drinks at the Aviary

                    SUNDAY:
                    - Lunch at Giordano's
                    - "Book of Mormon" matinee
                    - Dinner at Publican

                    So it seems the only open question is where to go for brunch at a place that takes reservations! :) I'm a little concerned about PV and Gage as the online brunch menus seem limited, which could be an issue when we have a group (8 total including 2 kids) and thus need to please different folks. Or do they also have daily specials to supplement what we see online?

                    1. re: PekoePeony

                      >> Moving Giordano's to Sunday is a good idea, especially since on Saturday we're joined by friends who are bringing their kids, so we definitely want to go to a place that takes reservations.

                      FWIW, Giordano's doesn't take reservations as such, but calling ahead with your pizza order ensures that you will be seated at the time your pizza comes out of the oven. So calling ahead is like having a reservation.

                      >> For ourselves, we're also leaning towards biting the bullet and renting a car for our whole trip; normally it would be a no-brainer except that parking at the Hyatt is crazy expensive :(

                      Looking at your itinerary, the only thing you would need the car for is the day where you're going to Hot Doug's and Midway. I would absolutely not rent a car for the entire trip. (If it were only Hot Doug's, I would just cab it, but the trip to Midway swings it in favor of the rental.) I would only rent a car for that day. Just go to one of the downtown rental car offices (Hertz has a rental office right in your hotel; the other major renters have offices within walking distance). Pick up the car when you're leaving for Hot Doug's and then Midway, then drop off the car with the rental car folks when you're done. That way you won't need to pay for parking at the hotel, either.

                      Incidentally, if you need to park downtown, rates at the hotels are often exorbitant, even for hotel guests, as you have already found out. Rates vary widely, with hotels charging $30-50 while nearby garages charge $10-15 for the same time period. There are websites where you can look up parking rates for all the garages and lots downtown for any specified location and arrival/departure date/time; the one I use is http://chicago.bestparking.com

                      >> - If we're able to move our Second City tickets to 8pm this day, then we'll have a late dinner at the Girl & the Goat. Otherwise we'll try for dinner at Purple Pig, and if the wait is crazy, our backup is Sable

                      The wait at Purple Pig during typical dinner hours (say 6-9 pm) is two hours or more, even on weekdays. You can count on that. Unless you're prepared to wait that long, I recommend making a reservation elsewhere, rather than hoping for a short wait that just isn't going to materialize. And working Purple Pig into your itinerary at a time when they aren't slammed (before 5 or after 10).

                      It may help if I describe Purple Pig's seating to you. Even though it's well known and gets a lot of attention, it's very, very small. They have about seven two-tops along one side of the room. There is a bar that seats maybe 15 people. And there are three high communal tables that seat 10-12 people each on barstools. That's all of it.

                      >> - Brunch at either Gage, Sable, Perennial Virant or Atwood Cafe. Which of these has the tastiest brunch?

                      I haven't had brunch at the Gage. The other three are all excellent choices. You might want to check out the brunch menus on their websites. And if you have dinner at Sable one night, then you might want to pick one of the others for brunch.

                      >> So it seems the only open question is where to go for brunch at a place that takes reservations! :) I'm a little concerned about PV and Gage as the online brunch menus seem limited, which could be an issue when we have a group (8 total including 2 kids) and thus need to please different folks. Or do they also have daily specials to supplement what we see online?

                      Since I haven't brunched at the Gage, I can only tell you about Perennial Virant, which is fresh in my mind because I just ate there for brunch a few weeks ago. The menu was exactly as shown on their website. I think they may have had 1-2 daily specials also but no more than that. You are correct in noticing that there is a much wider selection at Sable and Atwood Cafe.

                      Trivia note: Heather Terhune was the opening Executive Chef at Atwood Cafe, and ran it for ten years before opening Sable three or so years ago. Both restaurants are located in hotels (Burnham and Palomar) that are Kimpton properties, so that was actually a job transfer by her employer.

                      1. re: PekoePeony

                        For the Gage, I think during brunch service you get both the brunch & lunch menus. Give them a call to confirm.

                  2. I am not reading all of the other posts, but if you're considering Hot Dougs but don't have time, try Franks and Dawgs on N Clyborn. It's a 15 mins cab ride from the Mag Mile and I really really like. Just as creative and delicious and, in my opinion, the fries are better. Never had to wait more than 10 mins.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: jbontario

                      If you like, you can also get to Franks 'n' Dawgs with one 8-minute ride on the el, 30 minutes door-to-door from the hotel including the walk at both ends. From the Hyatt Regency Chicago, walk to State and Lake, where you can either go underground to the Red Line and take it to North and Clybourn, or walk upstairs to the elevated Brown Line and take it to Armitage.

                      If you enjoy pastries, two of the very best bakeries in the entire city are a short walk north of Franks 'n' Dawgs: Floriole on Webster, and Vanille Patisserie on Clybourn.

                      www.franksndawgs.com
                      www.floriole.com
                      www.vanillepatisserie.com