I'll be downtown with a couple of friends from the suburbs on the first Saturday in December. We're planning to check out the holiday lights on Michigan Avenue, the windows at Marshall Field's (yes, I still call it that) and the Christkindlmarket in Daley Plaza. Looking for a casual spot in or near the Loop, Mag Mile, maybe River North for dinner (we'll probably grab dessert at the market).
One person is on a restricted diet: low-carb, no spicy foods or shellfish. The other is a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy, a traditional hearty eater.
I was thinking of someplace like Silver Cloud in Wicker Park, only transplanted to the Loop. Cozy, pub-like atmosphere. Decent selection of comfort food at around $15 per entree. Not necessarily quiet, but relaxed enough to hang out with friends for a couple of hours and actually hear the conversation.
Embarrassingly, I've lived in the city for years but haven't tried very many restaurants downtown. Several names look promising: the Berghoff, Miller's Pub, the Exchequer, Poag Mahone's, Green Door Tavern. Does anyone have any specific recommendations?
Thanks a bunch!