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Restaurants & Bars

Does Chicago have a black market for restaurant reservations?

shm9496 | Feb 12, 201006:50 AM     6

While I suppose posting on Chowhound isn't the most discreet way to discover an underground reservations trading scene, I figured it was worth asking: I just booked tickets for an impromptu Valentine's trip to Chicago (priced at an irresistable $135 roundtrip from Asheville, N.C.), and am now trying to weasel my way into one of the city's best restaurants with two days notice. My wish list is remarkably predictable: Alinea, Blackbird, L20, North Pond. I was able to score the last available seating at DB Primehouse (5 p.m.), but would happily pay for a better time and table.

Where might I advertise for this sort of thing? Surely there's a Chicago couple somewhere who had a horrendous fight yesterday, and would gladly scrap its celebratory plans. Less optimistically, is there an overlooked restaurant I ought to consider? A bit of background: I work as a food writer, and am enthusiastic about anything delicious. My husband's a pretty conservative eater, and likely won't want to dip into any authentic international cuisine for Valentine's.

Thanks so much!

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