Dan and I celebrated our wedding anniversary with a quick trip to Chicago. We spent a a little less than 24 hours together in the city and packed in about 48 hours worth of stuff. Here’s a little recap:
We started things off with dinner and it was fun watching Dan on his maiden voyage at a Brazilian steakhouse. We went to Fogo de Chao on La Salle right by our hotel. The salad bar was my favorite, with a long line of prepared salads with edamame, kale, quinoa, etc. and all sorts of other veggies, plus fruit, cheese and meats. The smoked salmon bowled Dan over and we enjoyed the shrimp cocktail a lot, too. The meats and everything else were excellent; I lost track!
After dinner we walked a short distance to Eataly on Ohio Street. Eataly calls itself an Italian market. I bet they stock 300 varieties of pasta, plus olive oil, wine, candy, meat fish, breads, vegetables and fruits, and more cheese varieties in one spot than we’ve ever seen. Eataly also sells kitchen items and it is a restaurant, too, with pizza and other foods plus gelato, coffee and even gloppy-goopy, burrito-like desserts filled with Nutella. Everything screams, “Italian indulgence!” We loved looking around and we couldn’t resist some gelato and Italian ice.
After Eataly we made bit of a misstep into Howl at the Moon which we thought was a Billy Joel sort of piano bar. We goofed. It was jammed with brides and bridesmaids dancing to Shania Twain and Aerosmith and drinking beer and hard lemonades out of big plastic bins. Not our lane. I’m sure everyone there was having a swell time but we got outta there after ten minutes.
Next we went to Zanies Comedy Club in Old Town. Good thing the place was only partially filled because after all the food and walking, my feet were like sausages so I rested them on an empty chair. We thought the local guy Jim was pretty funny. The headliner Andy Woodhull was funny, too, but a bit raunchier than we like. Oh well, we were at a comedy club at 11 PM in downtown Chicago – what did we expect?
Sunday morning we took a long walk on Lake Shore Drive and ended up at the Original Pancake House for breakfast. Eating outside at restaurants is something I loved when I lived in the city long ago and I still do. We split some Swedish pancakes and a Dutch Baby with spinach, Gouda and tomatoes. Sausage Feet Take 2.
On Sunday afternoon we went to Lincoln Square where the Square Roots Festival hosted by the Old Town School of Folk Music was happening. The street fest included lots of vendors, craft beer, food and a few music stages but they were pretty quiet. I met a nice lady named Emily who was there with her boyfriend’s band Astronomer. We also witnessed kids making music at the “swing set drum kit” built by contraptionist Dave Ford. See a video on Instagram. Sunday’s headliners were jazzy-Americana singer Sarah Jarosz and #classiccountry troubadour Dale Watson. Too bad we missed them. We also missed Xanadu which we had hoped to see but couldn’t fit it in.
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