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One Last Chicago Post

January 15, 2013

I promise.

I feel like I’ve been dragging this out forever, but mostly it’s because I’ve been swamped with welcome-back-to-school hullabaloo (which included 45 minutes of class in which the professor never showed up. WELCOME BACK, am I right?!)

Since there was a Chicago Food post and a Chicago Beer post, I figured this one could pick up all the leftover bits and pieces. So, sorry if it’s long. But there are some pretty pictures!

Sweat. I know I’ve been less focused on this in my blog, but that doesn’t mean I’ve forgotten it in my life. And, since no trip would be complete without breaking a bit of a sweat (whether in the gym or on the dance floor), my buddy Caitlin and I hit up a Werq dance fitness class. I didn’t take any pictures of the class, but I can describe it as a super-hyped Zumba without a focus on any type of Latino music really. It’s some of the most current music I’ve ever had in a fitness class, and in addition to knowing all the words to all the songs, I couldn’t stop shaking it the entire time. Great moves, high energy, if you’re into that kinda thing (and you find a class near you, I found that they might not have trickled heavily over to the East coast yet), I’d totally suggest you hit it up.

For the Vegans, look no further than Native Foods.  With locations in Boulder, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, San Diego, and Chicago, this vegan sensation makes some fantastic dishes that make you say “Lacto-Ovo WHO?! Meat WHAT?”

Fountain Drinks!

Fountain Drinks!

Instead of soda, they offer these tasty fountain options. Katie preferred her tea-lavender-lemonade combo with a bit of slapped mint.

Gotta slap it for flavor.

Gotta slap it for flavor.

In addition to the INCREDIBLE sweet potato fries that I split with Katie, I went with the Ensalada Azteca.

Si, Papi.

Si, Papi.

Fresh avocado, cucumber, and jicama salsa with romaine, currants, toasted pumpkin seeds, and cilantro atop quinoa and served with Mango-Lime vinaigrette. So good. So, so good.

We later hit up Piece Brewery and Pizzeria for a little bit of the two things they do best.

Ben, going in for the kill.

Ben, going in for the kill.



We went with Plain: traditional New Haven pizza, a generous amount of red sauce topped with garlic, extra parmesan, and EVOO. This mozzarella-less pizza was fresh to death, and the two of us demolished it. Katie went with something a little different.  White with CLAMS! I tried a bite, but it was not my cup of tea. Or my shell of clam.

Served with lemon wedges! She said it tasted like Clam linguini.

Served with lemon wedges! She said it tasted like Clam linguini.

The beers from Piece were solid, not great.

After Piece, we moved onto my favorite part of the night. Emporium Arcade Bar. Two words.

X-Men (that’s one word, right?) Pinball.

Pinball Wizard

Pinball Wizard

I basically love this concept, and will be hastening to Philly’s own barcade stat to enjoy beer and arcade games STAT.

Three Aces was how we spent Saturday brunch. Burger and Soup to keep us warm. But not just any burger.

Come to me!

Come to me!

I present the Ace Burger: aged cheddar, trimmings, bacon jam, aioli, fries, garlic and hops pickle (which we mostly avoided). The fries were incredible, the burger…. NEXT LEVEL. PRETZEL ROLL, PEOPLE!

And, though I enjoyed the HELL out of some sushi from Coast on Friday night with my buddies Caitlin and Sierra, the lighting was not amenable to blog pics.

Just enjoy this tipsy pic of us all, and know that Chicago is a glorious place to be, whether you’re eating, drinking, dancing your face off, or visiting lady (or gentlemen) friends!

I surround myself with total babes all the time.

I surround myself with total babes all the time.

Next stop: Boston. My bus leaves on Thursday night, I’ve gotta whip up an itinerary!!

Any recommendations?

17 Comments leave one →
  1. January 15, 2013 12:05 pm

    No recommendations for Boston as I was only there for one night, but I will be happy to escort you to Barcade Philly any time in the future! They have a pulled pork sammie I am dying to try!

  2. January 15, 2013 2:50 pm

    Oh man, your Chicago recaps are making me so jealous! I was just there for a day, but since I’m on a stupid cleanse, I couldn’t enjoy all the eats and drinks like you did. I’m definitely living vicariously through your posts!

  3. January 15, 2013 4:32 pm

    I am signed up to try WERQ later this week….I’m really excited to bust out my moves. Native Foods is totally my jam and I NEED to try the sweet potato fries next time I go. Everyone hypes about them!

  4. January 17, 2013 4:22 pm

    Love the Chicago recaps, are you sure you don’t have any more?? Bookmarking for my next trip out: cheese-less pizza, barcade, pretzel roll burger…. check x3. As for Boston, you should check out my bff Katie’s blog. She lived in Boston while going to grad school and was a big happy hour fanatic. Sad thing is, Boston outlawed happy hours in the tea party days (or something like that) so she had to get creative finding deals:

    p.s. i love clam & garlic pizza, it is one of the staples from the first pizzeria i worked at, Pizza My Heart!

  5. January 19, 2013 9:39 am

    Boston: Burger at Mr. Bartley’s in Harvard Square. Cash only. Delicious and a unique experience. Last time I was there I had the Lady Gaga Burger.

    • January 25, 2013 11:49 am

      I tried to convince folks to go out and find this, but to no avail!! Next time, I guess. Because I love a good Lady Gaga meal.

  6. January 19, 2013 7:24 pm

    I love Chicago! It’s one of my favorite cities (and where I was born). Have a great time in Boston! I’ve always wanted to go there. I’m sure my husband would tell you that you have to visit the Sam Adams brewery!

  7. January 22, 2013 7:14 pm

    Definitely going to have to try Native Foods in LA. Thanks the heads up! I tried a pretzel roll at my friends house a couple weeks ago and now I understand the obsession. Sooo fluffy and salty and especially good when toasted.


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