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Chicago Cultural Center, etc.

That's it! Thanks so much.

It seems odd that it's not mentioned on the Mercat web page, nor does it have its own web presence.

Feb 14, 2012
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Chicago Cultural Center, etc.

I'm planning a trip to the CCC and 'the bean' for its sound/light performance on Fri. eve. I'm looking to get some vittles beforehand.

Somebody jump start my brain--what's the restaurant, probably on Mich. Ave., that has a cheap 'happy hour' like food offering in the mid afternoon? I seem to recall $5.00 apps for limited hours. I looked at The Gage and Mercat, but there is no obvious link there (but I still think it may be Mercat.)

Feb 14, 2012
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Ginger (not Mry-Ann) Ale

Can I get a somewhat concise rundown of better than Canada Dry ginger ales available, retail, In this fine city of ours?

I asked at Binny's but they seemed confused/didn't really know if they had any.


Jun 29, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

A challenge for Chicagoans

Joong Boo Market
3333 N. Kimball Ave. Chicago, IL. 60618

Has an excellent but >tiny< cafe that does Korean right!

Jun 22, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Fried Clams Anyone?

We're looking for recommendations of good fried clams in Chicago. I'm on the near north side and use public transportation, so I would like to avoid the time consuming trek to the far south side. I'm also on a bit of a budget, so I'd like to avoid the prices at MK's Fish Bar. Any ideas?

Jun 20, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Chicago Caterers?

We like Wolfgang Puck the most and have also had good luck with Food For Thought.

Food For Thought
9 Parkway N, Deerfield, IL 60015

Feb 22, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Best Thai in Andersonville?

If we're going to include the Spoon Thai neighborhood, other recommendations would include Rosded and Opart Thai. My current favorite, Sticky Rice, is a few blocks further south.

Spoon Thai
4608 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60625

Sticky Rice
4018 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

Rosded Restaurant
2308 W Leland Ave, Chicago, IL 60625

Feb 12, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Ask RuBo: Are Celebrity Chef Restaurants Worth It?

From all reports Eataly is worth a visit, though a bit pricey.

Feb 02, 2011
beanbreath in Features

Celebrating Julia Child: New Menu - Chopping Block

I'm glad you enjoyed yourself and, hopefully, learned something.
Obviously it wasn't the correct spelling of 'mise en place'.

On the local front, my wife is, tonight, attemptin a French onion soup, started with the roasted bones from a couple of beef shanks and those from the left over pork ribs last night.
I bowed out of the kitchen, thinking about ordering sushi. On a Monday night.

Jan 17, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Chicken Wings

I would think that most of the time you're going to get the individual sections rather than the jointed v.
And you all should be going to Tunes on Southport if you want to enjoy your wings.

Jan 17, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Shopping on Argyle

We're thinking of heading out Monday for an early dinner after some grocery shopping. I'm not really looking for anything too hard to get, I don't think--tree ear fungus, yuzu, kimchi, whatever.
Would you folks please recommend the best food shopping places around Argyle @ Broadway?
We're mostly looking for things to stack the larder and inspire us.


Jan 15, 2011
beanbreath in Chicago Area

I'm on an Eggnog Binge!

Not really.
I'm just wondering if anyone knows of a cozy tavern, near north, loop, Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, etc. that could provide a nice glass of eggnog. A pre dinner appetizer would be a big plus.

Dec 19, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Best Cheese Selection in Chicago

I think Bin 36...

Bin 36
275 Parkway Dr, Lincolnshire, IL

Dec 05, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Introducing CHOW's iPhone App: The Thanksgiving Dinner Coach

Is there some way to use this without the phone? (which I do not have)

Nov 05, 2010
beanbreath in Features

I'm at a loss...Dinner tonight near Apollo Theatre

Where did you end up?
Was it any good?

Oct 19, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Staying @ 630 N. Rush Sheraton FOur POints Cheap/Moderate Eats of Any Kind

Ginza Restaurant is at 19 E Ohio St. and is a lot better than it looks.
I'd second the recommendation of trying Xoco.

Ginza Restaurant
19 E Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60611

449 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654

Oct 19, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

I'm at a loss...Dinner tonight near Apollo Theatre

Chizakaya is great, but a bit of a walk from the Southport brown line.

Just down the street from The Apollo is Kyoto Sushi Restaurant
2534 N. Lincoln

Fair food, but it tends to get loud and crowded college kids.

Oct 15, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

2 days in Chi-town , where to eat?

It's too bad that nsxtasy sublimated his usual good humor to slam Avec. I've had a number of meals there that have ranked up to 'good' on the scale. The noise has never been a problem for me. Perhaps I just went at a good time and got lucky.
I also don't understand the fascination with deep dish pizza. Sure, it's unique, but all too often it's just a pile of melted cheese + veggies. Even @ Malnati's.
I'd go to the Purple Pig followed by or following a stop at the Violet Hour.

Sep 17, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

My college friends are coming to Chicago

The architectural tour from the boats is much better than the bus--of course the weather will be more of a factor.
Spring for a cab and hit Hot Doug's for a variety of dogs--beware--they've just got a bunch of new publicity and it will be more ridiculous than usual. Otherwise hit Wiener's Circle (2622 N. Clark Street--try Google) after you've had a few and if it's late enough you'll have a (non) memorable experience.
I'm not a big fan of Chicago stuffed pizza, but Pequod's on Clybourn (
)is pretty classic. I like New York style from D'agastino's ( I go to the one near Wrigley Field on Addison, but there's one closer to your hotel on Ogden. No frills Italian.
For steak, you're going to shell some bucks. nsxtasy's idea of David Burke's is probably on the mark (I usually buy my steaks and take care of myself) but if I was going to spend that kind of money and want a 'Chicago' experience, I'd probably try to deal with the mafia at Gene & Georgetti (
Oh yeah, don't forget to hit the Billy Goat Tavern ( before you pass out.

Sep 07, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Breakfast in Chicago

As much as I hate to spoil it, it's been spoiled already; i.e. those in the know know and this place is packed most of the time:

Victory's Banner

You could also include:


though I've never been particularly impressed.

Please avoid Orange, Feast and the rest of the trend hoppers.

Mindy Segal's Hot Chocolate:

probably deserves a mention.

Good luck with the article and have fun.

Victory's Banner Restaurant
2100 W Roscoe St, Chicago, IL 60618

Hot Chocolate
1747 N Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Sep 07, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Looking for Speck in Chicago

I used to sell speck @ F&O--we got it from NYC--nicely smoked and peppery--very lean.
Paulina Market is another source of German speck (near north side, Chi.).

Paulina Market
3501 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL

Aug 19, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

2 days in Chicago, Hot Doug's is closed, need other recs for (cheap) good eats - please help!

Don't miss Irazu for cheap eats.
They do an incredible veggie burrito, though i prefer chorizo.
Not to dis Bill Kim (because his places put out *great* food) but Belly Shack seems pretty pricey in comparison.

Aug 19, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Where can I buy tamarind paste in Chicago?

Go with the paste if you can--the pods are notoriously difficult to process.
I seem to remember buying a sort of 'block' of tamarind several years ago from a Hispanic store near North/Ashland. In any case--it's not hard to find.

Jun 11, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Any bakeries that deliver?

Fox & Obel is an excellent recommendation, though, perhaps a bit pricey.

You could also check into Dinkel's ( a more traditional, old style German bakery located a bit further north (3329 N. Lincoln Ave.). I know they deliver to the loop, not sure if there's a minimum order.

For really excellent pies, try Hoosier Mamma ( Call them and talk to them, you can probably arrange delivery.

May 10, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Yet Another Anniversary Post

OK, so I'm fishing for suggestions:

We've done:

North Pond (hated it, but that's another story)

Topo (they're booked, but we've been there more than twice)

So I'm thinking of Geja's though my MD and the darkness would guide me away

Ginza is the wild card for that neighborhood

No Spruce or Spice or that kind of stuff, we're on a budget (as nice as it would be to visit w/ Dale)

Kuma's, eeh, something more romantic, pls

can we steer clear of the hotels? though it would be nice to see Steven C. again...

So I'm looking for something warm and fuzzy on an off night (we both work hell shifts doing food stuff)

I've got about a month to figure this out or leave town.


North Pond
2610 North Cannon Drive, Chicago, IL 60614

Geja's Cafe
340 W. Armitage, Chicago, IL 60614

Ginza Restaurant
19 E Ohio St, Chicago, IL 60611

Apr 23, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Chinatown Street Food

In anticipation of checking out the Chinese New Year's parade in Chinatown on Sunday:

Can folks offer recommendations of the best places to grab a bite to eat and go, rather than sit in a restaurant?
What can I expect to find in the way of edibles on the street? (I'm thinking carts and trucks, not used gum.)
Also: Is there a best place to view the parade?

Thanks folks!

Feb 11, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Need Help Chicago !

Try to work in a place called The Purple Pig, probably for lunch--it's a new near Mag Mile resto w/ associations w/ Heaven On Seven--they are getting great reviews so far. It supposedly opens for lunch starting 1/18 and since it's new & good, I'd expect it to be pretty packed. An off hour visit would probably be best. The same holds true for Kuma's Korner--go for a two o'clock nosh.
North Pond would be best in the daytime--I think they do a Sunday brunch.
I'd work in Avec or Blackbird for Sat. PM.

Let us know what you end up doing & how you liked it; enjoy!

Jan 17, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Need Help Chicago !

Alinea rather than L20--reserve now

Topolobompo for your Rick Bayless fix--it's the only place of his that takes reservations

Definitely Hot Doug's--avoid Friday or Saturday if you can--if the weather's nice walk your dog down to the river a block away.

North Pond Cafe for another high end dinner with a great location

Kuma's Kafe for heavy metal burgers

The best dance places change from week to week--currently it's a thing called 'rehab' on Monday nights.

Bring your weather with you!!!!

Jan 13, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

Atmosphere at Coco Pazzo Cafe? Or other suggestions for a cozy Italian place?

I believe A Tavola might float your boat. There's no fireplace IIRC, but the space is small, intimate, rustic, romantic, etc. The food is world class good.

Jan 01, 2010
beanbreath in Chicago Area

NYE w/ 2 teens?

I would think Japonaise or Carnivale.

Dec 22, 2009
beanbreath in Chicago Area