True to my traveling fashion, my weekend in Chicago started out bumpy (quite literally), finished with a bang, and was filled with memorable culinary destinations throughout. I’ll make this brief, as this weekend was built around work and the National Restaurant Association, and I did not have much free time. But when I did, meals were had. And they were good.
So, let’s wrap it up, shall we?
For Pizza: Bar Toma. Thank you, Tony Mantuano, for giving Chicagoans a pizza option that is not deep dish. I’m not knocking deep dish pizza—indeed, it’s delicious—but I find it too heavy for my palate and my stomach. The crust at Bar Toma is chewy, and the toppings endless. I opted for goat cheese/leeks/hazelnuts/dates, and felt as if my tastebuds made a happy dance with the combination of flavors.
For Oysters and Seafood: GT Fish & Oyster. I ate West Coast oysters that were pink-hued, and some that were deep-fried in a po’ boy. The soft-shell crab was lightly fried, as was the cauliflower side dish. Their particularly smoky version of clam chowder was served with homemade oyster crackers. Do I really need to list anymore reasons why one should venture here? No? Didn’t think so.
For Pig Face: Girl & The Goat. Let’s be brief: don’t knock it til you try it. If you like pork belly, cracklings, or anything having to do with pork fat, you will indeed enjoy the delight of pig face. This was firmly pressed and fried until crispy, and topped with a fried egg. I’m sorry, can you kindly wipe the drool away from your face? Thanks.
For Chicagoland’s Hot Dog: Allium. The wiener is made in house and served with the standard Chicago toppings in miniature squeeze bottles and a side basket of french fries. Thank you, Four Seasons, for bringing forth a restaurant with
inexpensive less expensive retro fare.
Don’t worry, I ran. After all, something had to be done to burn off the pig face and hot dog. And although my legs felt great, they scolded me for taking them out on their first post-marathon run in Chicago by giving me hives. Woof.
Until next time, Chicago…