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Restaurants & Bars 10

10 hours in Chicago

balabat | Dec 2, 201109:52 AM

Hi, ChiChowers!

So, I have about a 10-hour layover in Chicago tomorrow (Saturday, 12/3), from 8:30 in the morning to 7:15 in the evening. (I fly in and out of O'Hare. I am giving myself roughly 10 hours because of transportation time to and from the airport, as well as time for checking in for my departure flight, although I can probably do the latter online.) The last time I was in Chicago was the summer of 2010, but only for a few days, and I spent most of my time touring architectural/cultural highlights. This time, I want to go on an epic foodie binge. Any suggestions? I am open to pretty much anything, although I want to try and hit as many spots as possible and still be able to waddle back onto my return flight at night. In other words, I am fine with street food-type suggestions, including the city's best hot dogs, pizza, sandwiches. I might be able to squeeze in lunch at a sit-down restaurant, perhaps a nice tapas-style joint.

I've done a bit of preliminary research, and I would love to try Hot Doug's--perhaps first or second thing in the morning, as soon as it opens for business. I would also love to try one of Rick Bayless's restaurants for lunch or perhaps a really early dinner, but I don't want to spend too much time waiting for tables. (Would Xoco be a good choice for a Saturday lunch?) Alternates will be welcome.

FYI, my tastes run toward the exotic, but I am up for pretty much anything, as long as it is relatively quick to acquire, quick to devour, and highly recommended.

Thanks, and sorry for the super-late notice!

Oh, and I'm flying in from New York, and I consider myself a bit of an NYC foodie, so factor that in however you wish. (In other words, I have had some stellar pizza in NYC and do not necessarily need to have Chicago pizza--although I do love deep-dish for what it represents, I remain a thin-slicer.) AND, I don't drink alcohol, so unless the food is really good there, I probably would like to stay away from bars/pubs.


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