I love Chicago. In fact, I love it even more than New York (I know!) I love that the streets are wide and Magnificent Mile (aka Michigan Avenue) is lined with flower beds. I love LOVE the architecture and that a river runs through the city. It’s not as fast paced and loud as New York – and therein lies the difference between me and many.
But whatever side of the fence your passion falls, there are some very cool spots to eat and drink that I think we’d all agree are worth visiting.
Here are my 5 tips for where to imbibe in Chicago:
1. Deep dish pizza
Ask three people where the best deep dish pizza is and you’ll get three different answers. I’m going out on a limb and will suggest if you have only one night to dine on such sinful food, you go to Giordano’s. The crust is crispy, the cheese gooey, add your fillings (if you want them) and the tomato sauce is on the top. A small is plenty for two.
Another icon of Chicago is the cheese and caramel popcorn at Garretts. Trust me, it’s outstanding. I visited the flagship store on Michigan Avenue and got a tour of the basement kitchen. They only have seven recipes and have been operating since 1947. Make a beeline here at the end of your shopping day. Here’s my post on my secret kitchen tour!
If I said this was a food hall you’d probably roll your eyes, but to pop into Eataly for lunch, a snack, coffee or even dinner, is to see just how cool the food hall idea can be. It’s Italian, of course, and just the gelato nook will have you hooked. But for great coffee visit Il Gran Bar Lavazza, pick up wine, order a pizza, buy truffles and fresh produce. It’s all here.
For the best sunset views in the city, head to the 96th floor of John Hancock Center. But have your camera ready for more than the view because I found the weirdest cocktail you ever did meet. Bacon-infused whisky. It’s a delicious mix of whisky, butterscotch schnapps and a crispy piece of bacon standing in it. A smoky and winter-warmer for your soul. Trust me, you’ll thank me!
The Donald has put New Zealander Morgan Eagles in charge of Food and Beverage at his Chicago hotel and to dine at his two-Michelin Star restaurant, Sixteen, is to experience more than just food with a flourish. The view takes you down the river to the lake and at Christmas time they have real reindeer living on the veranda. Come for lunch or dinner and prepare to be treated like royalty. Here’s my photo blog of our divine lunch>>