Hello all. I'm a Philly 'hound that will be visiting next week for about 4 days (Sunday through Wednesday). I've been completely swamped at work and haven't had time to completely digest this board, but, I read with interest the posts on La Cumbamba and I just wanted to make sure of a few things: 1) I saw it on the map, but is it reachable by public transit (or is it safe to walk at night?), 2) are they open on Sundays and Mondays, and 3) what time should we arrive to avoid a "crowd"?
I will be travelling with my younger sister (a grad student) and even though we are on a budget, we crave great food and good service (outdoor dining a plus). The preliminary, non-wittled down list: Frontera Grill, Star of Siam, Bistro Margot, Soul Kitchen (?), Robusto Cafe, Athena Restaurant, and Giordano's (sis's definite "do"). Please let me know if any of these should be 86'd. As you can see, our itiniery isn't completely planned as of yet, and I want to keep a few options depending on where our travelling leads. We will, however, stray somewhat far for really good eats.
Also, I need a few general recs for the following:
1) Breakfast around Grant Park/Loop - just a place to grab bagels, juice, light stuff, etc. (cafe, coffeehouse)
2) Lunch around 800-900 block of Mag Mile - sandwiches, salads, etc. Maybe a cafe/bistro.....
Unrelated question: 3) Are the galleries in River North open on Sundays/Mondays?
Thanks in advance. I'm looking forward to my visit since it's been just about 10 years (!) and the last time I was there I was a college student in search of architecture and beer (Goose Island and Sheffield's). I promise to write my raves/rants/reviews when I return!