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Chicago Tour Part One- Kumas, Full Shilling, Lou Malnatis, The Green at Grant Park

jessicheese | Sep 28, 200903:07 PM

I'm halfway through my first trip to Chicago and am having a great time so far! What a beautiful and interesting city you all have. We have been playing tourist, staying in River North, but spending a lot of time with friends from Wrigleyville.

Both couples have seen this place on DD&D, and couldn't wait to check it out. It was our first stop after the airport! We were pleasantly surprised to find only a 30 minute wait, even on a Saturday. Our waitress was super friendly and helpful, talking beers with us and getting us some great selections. Once she saw I was a cider fan, she suggested I try the JP Scrumpys Hard Cider. So delicious- I am going to have to find it near me!
We ordered a mac and cheese for the table with bacon and carmelized onion. Wow, was this amazing! Huge, too, 5 people shared it with no problem. So creamy, sharp cheese flavor...I would get this every time I could. I went with the Lair of the Minator, which was a burger topped with Brie, Pancetta, carmelized onions, and bourbon soaked pears and opted for the house salad with basil vinagrette instead of fries. The burger was fantastic! Huge, fresh patty on a pretzel roll that was able to hold up to the ingredients without overwhelming. The pear was such a subtle touch and the flavor stayed with me, pleasantly, after the meal. The salad was also really nice- great dressing, fresh ingredients. We all tried each other's burgers, so I was able to sample (in order of my faves) the Neurosis, with mushrooms and cheese; the Led Zepplin (topped with pulled pork & pickles); and another which name escapes me, but was spicy with avacado. Everything was amazing and fresh.
My only complaint was that despite finishing only half of our meal, we were SO full that we weren't able to do dinner that night! We did, however, have a great time at Second CIty.

Full Shilling
Our second day was dedicated to football. Normally, I wouldn't add a place like this to my review, but I had a hard time searching out sports bars. We spent quite a few hours here and I was really suprised at how good the $.35 wings were. Crispy, meaty, not too saucy... much better than what I'm used to with wing specials. They also had $2 burgers which looked like fresh patties and my friends who sampled them said they were really good. Oh, and I have to say that I'm loving that tater tots are an options at so many places in Chicago! I never see them in Philly.

Lou Malnatis
After an afternoon of drinking, we decided it would be a great time to sample real "deep dish" pizza. We ordered two medium pizzas, both buttercrust- one sausage and one pepperoni. Soooo goood!!!! Unfortunately, I was only able to eat 1 1/2 slices before calling it quits. At least we have leftovers for the rest of our trip!

The Green at Grant Park
A friend met us at Millenium Park and brought us to this mini golf/ restaurant that she likes. What a gem! You don't even see this place until you're right there, but it has great views of the skyline and water and they had some really good tunes playing in the background. I ordered the Meditarranean Salad with Shrimp, which was exactly what I wanted after my cholesteral tour. Fresh vegetables, 4 large shrimp, feta, and kalamata olives with pita points. It was big, but not too big, and so delicious. My husband had the grilled chicken sandwich (with tater tots!) which he loved and our friend ordered the buffalo chicken wrap and deemed it awesome. Really nice spot.

Garretts Popcorn
got the free sample with our tour. best caramel popcorn I've ever had!

So, that's it so far! We're off to Carnivale tonight, which I'm super excited for.

Great town, folks. Thanks for the hospitality!

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