My friend and I will be visiting Chicago for 4 nights, 3 full days in March. I was actually born and raised in Chicago, but went to college in NYC and became a foodie there. We're in our early 20's and consider ourselves to be NY foodie/hounds. I really want to impress him during our visit. While I grew up on all the great Chicago things, such as Lou Malnati's, Indian, Thai, Mexican, etc, I still don't know too much since I haven't gotten much of a chance to really explore the foodie scene since I moved.
We'll be arriving in O'Hare around 9:45pm and will be staying at my house in the north/lake county suburbs. I'm sure we'll be hungry, so I'm hoping Portillo's or some place else with a good Italian beef sandwich will still be open. Please recommend a place if there are any along that route.
Some places I have in mind and would appreciate thoughts on...
-Lou Malnati's or Giordano's - to show him what real deep dish pizza is like
-Carlos Restaurant in Highland Park - my parents' favorite. We already have reservations here. Any suggestions on what to eat here?
-Hopleaf - we love Belgian beer and moules frites, so this might be fun. There isn't a place quite like this in NYC. Any other suggestions for beer aficionados would be appreciated.
-somewhere for Thai food - I keep reading about TAC Quick, so that's certainly a possibility. I want TRULY authentic Thai food. Atmosphere isn't a concern. Any other places that would surpass Sripriphai in NY?
-perhaps a quick taco "snack" somewhere in Lake County
-Kaze Sushi - I know NY is far superior than Chi in the sushi dept, but my parents really like this place and want me to try it. Any thoughts/comments/concerns about Kaze? How much is the seasonal tasting menu?
We'll also be going to the Museum of Science and Industry. Is there any place nearby to grab a quick lunch either before/after the museum? Thinking about Harold's simply because it sounds like good fried chicken and is a southside institution.
Those are my ideas for now, so I'd like to know what you Chicago hounds think as well as if you have any other suggestions. I really just want to take him to places that are either uniquely Chicago and/or are better than what can be found in NYC.
Thanks in advance!