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LouieB

Going to Chicago....what to do, see, stay, etc.

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Thanks for the suggestions. Delilah's looks good, especially if I can hit them on a night when they are spinning hard country or 70s. I wish Sheffields had liquor, it looks good, too, but we are bourbon drinkers much more than beer lovers. Green Mill looks really cool, but we won't have time for that as this is such a short trip. Might hit up Green Door, though, that's a good option.

 

Thanks again and I'll report back after the trip.

 

So, did you enjoy Chicago, Shug?

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I guess folks don't come here anymore. Maybe with the Vic shows coming up people will chime in here with stuff they have done or with questions about Chicago.

 

For anyone coming from out of town now - bring lots of warm clothes and build in lots of extra time getting around. We are having a monumentally bad winter.

 

LouieB

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No specific questions, Lou, but are you aware of any major changes to the retail or dining places near the Vic since last year? I'm coming with friends again for the Tweedy shows and staying at City Suites. We esually end up visiting the breakfast place across the street from the hotel, the Italian restaurant down the street from the Vic and the liquor store on the corner near the Vic. Are those places still there? Anything new we should look out for?

 

Edit: I shouldn't have just addressed this to Lou. Any of you Chicagoans, I'd welcome suggestions from.

 

By the way, I had all my cold weather gear already packed for the expectedly freezing Chicago winter. Then I got to give it a workout here in Virginia today, where we got 8 inches of snow last night. I guess this was a good trial run for a cold weekend in Chicago.

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Oh yea, you go to Clarkes. They make good food. I would give Ann Sathers a shot for breakfast or lunch or dinner which is on the same side of the street as the City Suites. The Italian restaurant is Leona's which is all right. I think their service is slow, but I haven't been in a lot of years. Sheffields is a nice bar up the street from there. And Native Foods on Belmont serves pretty good veggie fare. Matsuya Japanese restaurant is up around the corner on Clark and has been there forever and is very good.

 

Needless to say Schubas is down about three or four blocks west and is a great bar, a good music club and the Harmony Grill has good food.

 

LouieB

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I 2nd Sheffields - decent BBQ, and a good selection of microbrews on tap.

 

A little further south (about 3 blocks, on Wellington and Sheffield) you'll find one of the best Thai restaurants in town: Andy's Thai Kitchen. It's a BYOB. and DMK Burger Bar has great burgers.

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Thanks, y'all! Hopefully we can break away from the line for a little while and maybe branch out a bit. I'll check out Schuba's for after the show on Friday or Saturday night, too. Things should still be hoppin' around 11 or so when Jeff calls it a night, and I've always heard what a great place that is.

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I would give Ann Sathers a shot for breakfast or lunch or dinner which is on the same side of the street as the City Suites.

Ann Sathers is the classic in that neighborhood, but I was just around there recently and had an AMAZING breakfast at a place called m. henry. Creative and delicious. If you are a fan of sweet items, like pancakes, for breakfast, their "Bliss Cakes" are a revelation! Amazing!

Also, the breakfast stuffed poblano pepper is insane.

Only been there the once, but I will definitely go back when I am on the North Side around that time again.

Yum.

http://www.mhenry.net

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M Henry is up by me as is M Henrietta, both in Edgewater. Only been to M Henry, but it is very good. Ann Sathers has branches in both Andersonville and further east in Edgewater too. Lots of competition.

 

So where did the folks from the line end up??

 

LouieB

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I totally lost track of what weekend the shows were. For some reason I thought it was last weekend. Bundle up tonight guys. It is going to be pretty cold still this weekend.

 

LouieB

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Bumping this, although it doesn't really need it. since this was first posted, Chicago's options have expanded in regards to clubs, restaurants, theaters, other music venues and even the size and scope of music events. This summer promises to be one of the greatest yet with stellar line-ups at Pitchfork, Riot Fest, Millennium Park (both free and paid), neighborhood fests, etc.

 

Please come on here and make suggestions for others. I am getting a bit old to stay on top of every new joint that opens, but I know others do: so please tell us what you enjoyed and what you didn't. I know there are a ton of new restaurants, bars, and such and some old favorites have closed or are not what they used to be. Let us know what you think. There will be a lot of VCers in Chicago this summer. Thanks.

 

Wow this thread was started six years ago.

 

LouieB

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I'll be in town for the Riviera residency (only my 3rd time in Chicago); does anyone have an opinion on breweries to visit in town? I'd like to go to Lagunitas, but Half Acre looks awesome..

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Half Acre IS awesome.  They have a lovely tap room- you can bring food or have food delivered.  I believe the Saturday brewery tour is extremely popular, though, and hard to get in. 

 

There is another brewery close to Half Acte called Begyle.  It is a fairly new brewery with awesome beer.  They have Saturday tours but no tap room, only a store.  http://www.begylebrewing.com/home/

 

Revolution has a brewpub in Wicker Park/Bucktown/Logan Square (I can't decipher those neighborhoods anymore) - it is very popular .  Their beers are great.

 

Out in the west suburbs is Two Brothers brewing- they have a pretty good (free) tour and brewpub attached.

 

There are about a MILLION breweries popping up all the time here.  If you want to enjoy many kinds of local beers, there are so many eateries/bars to choose from.    If you also enjoy old arcade games, try Headquarters Beecade (http://hqbeercade.com/) or Emporium (http://emporiumchicago.com/), both of which have more than one location.

 

Also, just a warning for anyone unaware- Hot Doug's is permanently closed.  

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Yup you will have to get a hot dog somewhere else.

 

Lagunitas is off the beaten track, but Half Acre is pretty close to the Riv.  (Not walking distance) I have not been to Lagunitas, but I am told it is quite something.  I would think the Half Acre would fulfill your beer drinking needs. 

 

As always with the Riv I recommend a drink at the Green Mill which is just across the street.  It's an historic bar and very colorful during the day.  The Riv is in Uptown, a slowly gentrifying neighborhood.  The Vietnamese business district is a couple blocks away and there are some fun taco places and bars in the vicinity. 

 

LouieB

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I am starting to plan my trip to Chicago for the December shows. I'll be coming from LAX. Never done any trip like this, let alone solo, so please bear with me.

 

 

How late would be "too late" of an arrival at O'Hare to get downtown, check in and get up to the show at a reasonable time on a Friday?

 

What are my best options from getting to O'Hare to the downtown area?

 

I assume taxi is my best bet to get to the show each night, right?

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There is an el train (blue line) directly from O'Hare to downtown.  Depending on where your hotel is, you can easily take it and save the cab fare which will run you in excess of $20 bucks and more likely 30.  The red line runs from downtown to within half a block of the Riv and is the best way to get there.  Time is always iffy.  The el runs regularly, but it is at least 45 minutes to downtown and half an hour back up to the Riv. Depending on where the hotel is you could make it in two or so hours, but that is cutting it close. 

 

Honestly if you are near the el line, save any cab fares and take it.  Buy pass and take public transportation.

 

LouieB

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Eat one of these

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Any suggestions as to the best way to figure out what is happening in Chicago in a couple of weeks? I will be there for all of the Winterlude shows + Nick Lowe on Dec. 7 and have just one night free: Wednesday, Dec. 10. I'm thinking maybe a comedy show (if there's something good), a play, or something else non-musical. I did see that Justin Townes Earle is at Space in Evanston but I've seen him several times before and might need to give my ears a break for one night.

 

I've looked on Pollstar and Chicagoist and Chicago Reader websites. Chicago Reader seems to have the best listings of upcoming events, but I can't find anything beyond the end of November. Can any of you steer me in a good direction to look for something cool that might be happening in town on Wednesday, 12/10?

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The Reader has an early warning section and the actual paper copy has ads for the clubs.  The ads have the schedules for the coming month or so sometimes  Listings for plays probably has the dates of the runs, but not sure.  The listings for music are usually for the week that it is published only.  If there are some clubs or plays that look good, go to the websites of those clubs or theaters and it will give all that information.  I doubt there is any collated information for all clubs or theaters stretching out for a few months in advance.  Only the clubs or theaters would list that kind of information. 

 

LouieB

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Any suggestions as to the best way to figure out what is happening in Chicago in a couple of weeks? I will be there for all of the Winterlude shows + Nick Lowe on Dec. 7 and have just one night free: Wednesday, Dec. 10. I'm thinking maybe a comedy show (if there's something good), a play, or something else non-musical. I did see that Justin Townes Earle is at Space in Evanston but I've seen him several times before and might need to give my ears a break for one night.I've looked on Pollstar and Chicagoist and Chicago Reader websites. Chicago Reader seems to have the best listings of upcoming events, but I can't find anything beyond the end of November. Can any of you steer me in a good direction to look for something cool that might be happening in town on Wednesday, 12/10?

Aren't you going to be tired? ;)

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And cold......

 

There are countless things to do in Chicago and finding some low impact activities for times when Wilco is not playing is still possible.  Have I plugged Constellation?  They have a great variety of improvisational music in a laid back setting and real seats. 

 

LouieB

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Aren't you going to be tired? ;)

Tired? Hah! I laugh at tired!

 

Yeah, maybe, but really how grueling is it to go to a great show every night? My days are free and I won't have to get up early. I'll be living like a rockstar--wake up call at 2:00 or so. :-)

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Eat at:

The Weiner Circle.

But, go during the day before the circus begins. The thing is, you can still get some of that attitude during the day, if you like. But it's less of a freakshow. And, truth be told, the food, itself, it really good there. Get a char dog and cheese fries. (Split the fries with someone; they're huge.) And those cheese fries are the best I've ever had.

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