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post #1 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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Downtown Italian Restaurant

I'm visiting Chicago with my girlfriend on Sat. and I'm looking for a good Italian restaurant Downtown. We're staying at the Wyndham near Ontario and Mich. Ave. north of the river. I was hoping to find a nice place we could walk to within 3 ro 4 blocks of the hotel. Preferably moderately priced (under $80 for 2) that doesn't require reservations and has more business casual type dress.

Hell who knows...after a full day of riding (we're taking the 9R from SE Iowa to do the Starved Rock Ride) maybe we'll just order room service and call it a night.... but I'd like to have plan A.


Any recommendations from the Downtown folks?
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post #2 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:46 PM
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ahh there are SO many "eating out" jokes in there i'm not gonna touch them..

best little italain place i know of is in Des Plaines

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post #3 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:49 PM
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Not Italian, but I'll take a girl for a date here

Quote:
TRU offers progressive French cuisine focusing on the freshest most flavorful ingredients possible. The fare is served on a spectacular array of non-traditional surfaces produced by local and international artisans. Dessert reservations are only accepted through the TRU Restaurant reservation office. Please call 312-202-0001 for availability. On-line dessert reservations will not be accepted.

Cuisine: French

Dining Style: Fine Dining

Address: 676 North Saint Clair
Chicago, IL 60611 US
Cross Street: Huron

Neighborhood: Gold Coast/Streeterville

Hours of Operation: Dinner: Monday Thursday: 5:30pm - 10:00pm; Friday Saturday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm; Sunday: Closed

Price: $51 or more

Web Site: www.TRUrestaurant.com
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post #4 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:55 PM
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Tratoria - expensive. Hard to get in. But so so good.
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post #5 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:55 PM
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You might wanna cab it, but here's my recommendation:
http://metromix.chicagotribune.com/s...,2850457.venue

The Village is like the midrange place, so that's probably your best bet if you go there.
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post #6 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:56 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
Not Italian, but I'll take a girl for a date here
I was looking at some of those. But to be honest, I'm not sure she really likes complicated or "exotic" dishes. She grew up in the country in MA. She's not very adventurous when it comes to food.

I'll keep that as an option.
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post #7 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by midknyte
Tratoria - expensive. Hard to get in. But so so good.
Yup. I've been there once, excellent food
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post #8 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 05:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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I live in "almost middle of nowhere" IA and she lives in " the middle of nowhere" MO .... it won't take much to impress either of us.
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post #9 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:02 PM
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Well, bad news first, it's Saturday night right, no way any "good" place will not be booked solid. You may be able to get seated fairly quickly because you are only a party of two but that still means 30-45 minutes. I'll do a search after this post for a good place where I may know someone.

As for Tru, I've been there once, my girlfriends mom paid. It was "meet the parents" night for me and the bill for her was $530 with tip. That's for three people, one moderately priced bottle of wine and a three hour meal. It's awesome but I don't think there was much anything on the menu for $51 that would be more than a taste.

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post #10 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dr. D
W
As for Tru, I've been there once, my girlfriends mom paid. It was "meet the parents" night for me and the bill for her was $530 with tip. That's for three people, one moderately priced bottle of wine and a three hour meal. It's awesome but I don't think there was much anything on the menu for $51 that would be more than a taste.
It's a one in a lifetime thing. Not like you're going there every day I bet the desserts would be the best thing to try there ...
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post #11 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:08 PM
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Leona's @ Erie and Franklin
across the street from Coyote ugly+ Hooters and a lot of other downtown club's and restaurants.

You know, around the rock+roll mcdonalds(which is tore down)

Rosebud- One downtown somewhere and one in Naperville.

maggiano's Clark + grand?
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post #12 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
It's a one in a lifetime thing. Not like you're going there every day I bet the desserts would be the best thing to try there ...
Desserts and food were good, but what really stood out was the service. Unparalleled to any place I have been to or worked at.

As for my recommendation...
http://cafebabareeba.com/

Not Italian but very close, I guarentee you will love it. Not exactly walking distance, but a $5-7 cab away. Easy to spend a little or a lot there, Tapas is the best way to dine out.

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post #13 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:13 PM
yo quiero su taco
 
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Save bet...Francesca's in the City. It's on Taylor near Loomis. Hit Bevi Amo (Wine Bar) right across the street for a glass of wine before or after. Get the #112, it is this Reisling that women just LOVE. I call it Hot Tub wine.

EDIT not close to the hotel at all.

"includes 10 used-car dealers or auto repair shops, 11 liquor stores and bars--two of which advertise lingerie fashion shows and a third billed as a "gentlemen's club"--three cut-rate motels and one trailer park. The squat, brick municipal building is next to a currency exchange and a few steps from an adult video store. The bars open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 a.m."

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Originally Posted by admin View Post
Something must be fishy...I am going to go poke around in the back end..

Last edited by whiteSeatEnvy; 09-20-2004 at 06:20 PM.
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post #14 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:14 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
It's a one in a lifetime thing. Not like you're going there every day I bet the desserts would be the best thing to try there ...
Perhaps a place like that is best reserved for when giving her a $5000+ ring to go with the $300 meal.
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post #15 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:15 PM
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This looks like a good Italian place too (four stars):

Spiaggia
980 N. Michigan Ave.
312-280-2750

http://metromix.chicagotribune.com/d...,7901323.venue


Quote:
A fantastic view, rich decor and award-winning contemporary Italian food are highlights of the Spiaggia experience. When everything's in motion in the multi-tiered main restaurant--kitchen staff, tuxedoed waiters--it's like being inside the works of a fine mechanical instrument. Touches of warm wood, expansive windows and contemporary art add to the drama. Dinner is a leisurely experience here, not to be hurried. Chef Tony Mantuano serves up a variety of unconventional Italian dishes, including squab, quail and veal preparations, wood-roasted salmon and scallops.
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post #16 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:15 PM
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I've heard great things about Babareeba

"includes 10 used-car dealers or auto repair shops, 11 liquor stores and bars--two of which advertise lingerie fashion shows and a third billed as a "gentlemen's club"--three cut-rate motels and one trailer park. The squat, brick municipal building is next to a currency exchange and a few steps from an adult video store. The bars open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 a.m."

Quote:
Originally Posted by admin View Post
Something must be fishy...I am going to go poke around in the back end..
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post #17 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
This looks like a good Italian place too (four stars):

Spiaggia
980 N. Michigan Ave.
312-280-2750

http://metromix.chicagotribune.com/d...,7901323.venue
Expensive and always booked.

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post #18 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dr. D
Expensive and always booked.
Damn Alan, you've been to them all Be my sugah' daddy
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post #19 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:22 PM
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Hooters has Italian on their menu right? There is one very close to where you're staying. Cram a Chicken Parmigiana sandwich down her throat and then give her the 'ole Italian sausage back at the hotel.

"includes 10 used-car dealers or auto repair shops, 11 liquor stores and bars--two of which advertise lingerie fashion shows and a third billed as a "gentlemen's club"--three cut-rate motels and one trailer park. The squat, brick municipal building is next to a currency exchange and a few steps from an adult video store. The bars open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 a.m."

Quote:
Originally Posted by admin View Post
Something must be fishy...I am going to go poke around in the back end..

Last edited by whiteSeatEnvy; 09-20-2004 at 06:24 PM.
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post #20 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:27 PM
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post #21 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:27 PM
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Carmines is within walking distance. Reservations are recommended but you can put your name on a list. I was there Saturday and it was $140 for 4. That was with only 2 people drinking wine and they only had one glass each. It is the booze that will drive any bill up.
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post #22 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by whiteSeatEnvy
Hooters has Italian on their menu right? There is one very close to where you're staying. Cram a Chicken Parmigiana sandwich down her throat and then give her the 'ole Italian sausage back at the hotel.
That's the wSE that has been missing for the last 2 weeks
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post #23 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:37 PM
pfft.
 
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I always liked Scoozi. It's on Huron-- not too far. Anyway, the atmosphere is nice because you still get privacy even if it's busy. It's not expensive at all.
I used to go there on weekends a lot without a reservation.
But you can get one online, anyway. It's owned by the same people that own Shaws, and Maggiano's. (Frankly, I think Maggiano's is NOT good.)

http://www.lettuceentertainyou.com/r...home.jsp?id=16
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post #24 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
Damn Alan, you've been to them all Be my sugah' daddy
Part of my job is to go places and try stuff. No, work doesn't cover the tab, but I'm working on it. I'm a chef so it's good to see what everyone has going on and apply it to what I do. It can be a curse though, paying 3-4 times what the you can make it for at home sucks when you can do it better.

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post #25 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:38 PM
pfft.
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by whiteSeatEnvy
I've heard great things about Babareeba
It IS good. Lettuce Entertain You is one chain that rarely misses the mark.
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post #26 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dr. D
Part of my job is to go places and try stuff. No, work doesn't cover the tab, but I'm working on it. I'm a chef so it's good to see what everyone has going on and apply it to what I do. It can be a curse though, paying 3-4 times what the you can make it for at home sucks when you can do it better.
Word My ex-wife is a chef at a Marriott in the burbs, and she could cook me all the stuff they make there in 15 minutes and with $20 ...
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post #27 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rev
Word My ex-wife is a chef at a Marriott in the burbs, and she could cook me all the stuff they make there in 15 minutes and with $20 ...
Which Marriot? Whats her name?

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post #28 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:45 PM
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Maggiano's is so... "mass market". Quantity over quality. You might as well be at Olive Garden.


If you want Italian, just cab it over to the Taylor Street area. Tufano's on Vernon Park (I think that was the name) had absolutelyfreakinAWESOME food - authentic, reasonably priced and exceptional.

There's also that other place owned by (Phil?) Stefano (Stefani?)... ohh gawd I fell in LOVE with the food but I'll be darned if I can remember the name... aaaack!

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post #29 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dr. D
Which Marriot? Whats her name?
Kira. Dunno if she's been promoted to Sous Chef or not, but it's in the Hoffman Estates Marriott. Some months ago, she used to work for Andrew Coates (ex. chef for "The Greenery")...

Last edited by Rev; 09-20-2004 at 06:52 PM.
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post #30 of 77 (permalink) Old 09-20-2004, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by cherrypicker
Perhaps a place like that is best reserved for when giving her a $5000+ ring to go with the $300 meal.
no, that's the one day you can go to McD's and say "eat the damn value meal or else you don't get what's in the box"
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