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Thread: Chicago getaway ??

  1. #1
    Tired of talk. Win! Joseph's Avatar
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    A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Some of you who know me know I am not only a Reds fan, but also a fan of the Chicago Blackhawks. As a result of marrying the greatest woman on earth I will be fortunate enough to attend Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals tomorrow night at the United Center in Chicago.

    I have never been to Chicago, nor has she, so much like some of my Redszone brethren have come to you to ask for sites to visit and places to eat when traveling to foreign [to them] cities, I come to ask the same thing [and praise my wife for the trip which is required via marital law].

    Where is a really good place to eat not terribly far from the United Center or on the southeast side of town? I'll be driving up from Louisville so stopping anywhere along the way i no big deal, i just don't plan to go much beyond the United Center. Any places I should try to visit?

    Thanks in advance
    Last edited by Joseph; 05-28-2010 at 10:00 AM.

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    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]


  4. #3
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Some guys from another message board were talking about Chicago hotels but the subject changed a bit into things to do. Some of their comments:

    Save $40 on the archetectural river cruise, go to the Sears Tower, pay $8 a person and take the water taxi to Navy Pier. Same cruise, (actually a little longer) and it is $8 a person rather than $26. It is called "shoreline taxi." They also have a nice trip from the Pier to the Museum campus thats cool too for only $6.

    Another place to find nice dining is Texas de Brazil. Its a brazillian steakhouse that is worth every penny of the $50 per person price tag. However, Sunday through Thursday you can sign up on their website and get a 20% off your total bill coupon. Eat at a really nice restaurant in the River North area for $80. I know it sounds like a lot but when you look back you will be happy.
    Don't worry about Taste. It's only busy if you're staying near Grant Park. If you go, it's very crowded, with a few good musical groups. However, it's also full of tourists and suburbanites. Most city residents avoid it. If you're looking to do something a little more "native" so to speak, check out the street fairs going on during your visit: http://chicago.metromix.com/events/a...339943/content. The St. Jahosephat Summerfest is a good example of something a little more neighborhood like that attracts a lot of northside dwelling single people like myself. Also, check out the Gay Pride Parade if you're in town that weekend. It's good people watching and entertainment. Both events are more northside"ish" than Taste, semi-near Wrigley, and hence aren't afflicted by any Taste related congestion . The Pride Parade, however, does attract a few hundred thousand people, it's just stretched over several blocks.

    Lastly, get out to the lakefront. Renting a bike and hitting the trail would be a great way to spend an afternoon, followed by beverages and live music at Castaways on North Avenue Beach. Also aquatic and HIGHLY recommended, the guided architectural tours of the Chicago River and lakefront. It's fascinating history, and the views of the loop from the river are unmatched. These are done via boat and they're docked along the river downtown near Michigan Ave. Tours of that type also leave from Navy Pier. Just make sure you're taking a guided tour and not a Water Taxi.
    Go to the Hancock Tower instead of the Sears, there is the 96 or 98th floor rest/bar. Elevator ride is free. You also don't have to leave the magnificent mile.

    If you are going to a brazilian steak....go for fogo de chao. But if you are going to spend steak house money, hit up one of the a REAL steak house.
    Tomato - toemaatoe. Just my opinion, but take the architectural cruise. All the Sears Tower (now Willis Tower) offers you is a view. The architectural cruise is guided and offers historical info on the buildings and areas you're seeing. My friends and I boat on Lake Michigan all the time - the view from the river NEVER gets old. You'll learn a lot about the city that way. There's a ton of history in Chicago that is fascinating, if you're into that kind of thing. Hell, you could go boating with us, but I'd only be able to explain 20% of what you'd see/hear on the architectural cruise. However, the upside is you'd enjoy all the adult beverages you care to consume.
    Definitely go to Navy Pier. Your wife will love it. Ride the big Ferris Wheel there. Take the El somewhere just for the experience.
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    Be the ball Roy Tucker's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    I second the architectural cruise up the Chicago River and on the lake. Very cool.

    Pay attention to the open sky

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    I second this about Giordano's - very good. Uno's pales in comparison. There's one about a half block from my daughter's apartment. Yum.

    Park you car and walk and take the El. Great way to get around.
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Leave some time on the way up or back for Portillo's restaurant in Merrillville IN(Just past Crown Point on I-65.)
    www.portillos.com

    Italian Beef Sandwich dipped in the meat gravy. Don't worry you can thank me later.
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    Leave some time on the way up or back for Portillo's restaurant in Merrillville IN(Just past Crown Point on I-65.)
    www.portillos.com

    Italian Beef Sandwich dipped in the meat gravy. Don't worry you can thank me later.
    There is also a Portillo's downtown (Clark & Ontario) and they have excellent hot dogs as well. Great place!

  9. #8
    One and a half men Patrick Bateman's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Your a lucky man Joe.

    I got to see the Hawks over New Years in Chicago. Stadium is really nice, the atmosphere is a lot of fun. I'm pretty jealous of you right now.

  10. #9
    I'm gettin paper Homer Bailey's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Agree with all things posted here so far. Fogo De Chao is flat out amazing and Portillo's is a money Hot Dog/Burger spot.

    As far as areas near the arena, a bar you MUST go to before the game is West End (Corner of Ada and Madison). I can't imagine how packed it'll be before a Hawks game, but if you're a Hawks fan, it'll be worth it. Huge crazy Blackhawks contigent there, and its a short walk to the arena. Food is good, and the atmosphere is amazing.

    Be careful with the train advice given here, as there are no train stops near the United Center, but there are buses in the area.

    The water taxi is a great idea, as the city view from the river is truly amazing in the summer time. I take the water taxi to and from my office when I'm on a downtown client just for fun.

    If you're around for the weekend, check out Navy Pier for sure, and maybe North Avenue beach to catch some rays. Supposed to be great weather this weekend.

    Enjoy! Let me know if you have any more questions.

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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Go Blackhawks!

  12. #11
    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingspoint View Post
    Go Blackhawks!

    And take the Cubs with you!
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  13. #12
    Oy Vey! Red in Chicago's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by redsmetz View Post
    I second this about Giordano's - very good. Uno's pales in comparison. There's one about a half block from my daughter's apartment. Yum.

    Park you car and walk and take the El. Great way to get around.
    I'm actually in San Francisco tonight so didn't see this until now. Hope you skipped Giordanos because it really isn't very good. Chicago style (deep dish) pizza isn't what it's cracked up to be.

  14. #13
    breath westofyou's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by Red in Chicago View Post
    I'm actually in San Francisco tonight so didn't see this until now. Hope you skipped Giordanos because it really isn't very good. Chicago style (deep dish) pizza isn't what it's cracked up to be.
    No it is that good... and if you want to try the SF version I suggest you get over to Oakland and try Zachary's the best deep dish pizza in the world.

  15. #14
    Stat Wanker Hodiernus RedsManRick's Avatar
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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Chicago style pizza is definitely a hit or miss sort of thing. It really is a pizza pie.

    If you have the money, there are a number of great places in the Fulton Market area, such as Moto and 160 Blue.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

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    Re: A Day in Chicago [go Blackhawks]

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    Leave some time on the way up or back for Portillo's restaurant in Merrillville IN(Just past Crown Point on I-65.)
    www.portillos.com

    Italian Beef Sandwich dipped in the meat gravy. Don't worry you can thank me later.
    I heartily suggest an Italian Beef before you leave town, but I personally recommend Al's Beef. Tops in the city for me. Not sure where you're staying but there's one fairly close to the United Center.

    And if you want some upscale Mexican(ish), I recommend Rick Bayless's restaurants in the Loop. Probably too late for a reservation at Topolobampo, but Frontera would probably be able to seat you.

    Go Hawks.


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