Food & Travel: Chicago Edition

I had a wonderful, exhausting, and exhilarating week in Chicago while at residency. I didn’t have the opportunity to visit as much of the food spots as I would have liked. I didn’t expect to be so tired after each day. Next year I’m definitely going a day or two earlier so I could visit 360 Chicago, Sky Deck Towers, and the Navy pier. I had a wonderful stay at the Warwick Allerton Hotel. I got a pretty good deal off of Booking.com for only $74.50 per night. The room was nice and cozy. It also had an incredible view of Michigan Ave and all the shops. I was a bit surprised by the view. The hotel was further away from my school than other hotels so I took a few taxis and Uber. The taxis were legit. It reminded me of New York City. The Ubers were okay. However, it made me mad when I requested an Uber and the guy drove past me without even looking to see if anyone was there. Then he cancelled my ride and I was charged $5. I took taxis after that. It was always early in the morning and around 6pm at night so it’s the same price as the Ubers if not cheaper.

Luckily my school sponsored some of the meals to cut down the costs of residency. Saturday night results in delicious deep dish pizza from Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria. A lot of people didn’t like it but I LOVE Lou Malnati’s pizza. I prefer them over Giordano’s any day. Their salad is amazing. I’m not sure what they use to make their dressing but it’s fabulous. I had seconds of salad.
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Sunday night was the highlight of my trip! I got to see two of my marines who drove from Michigan and Ohio respectively. We grabbed dinner at Lou Malnati’s per my request. I love them. They drive hundreds of miles to visit me AND let me pick the place I want to eat. They even waited for me to order which made me laugh. We ordered a large Chicago Classic (my fave), pasta with vodka sauce, salad, and calamari. The food was so good! The pasta could use some more sausage but holy cow. I was a happy camper. I was sad I wasn’t able to drink my beer like I wanted because I had a long day the next day. They walked me back to my hotel with a pitstop at Firecakes so I could get my donut. Like I said, I love them. They are awesome.
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This is a picture of my hotel room. It’s pretty legit for the price. I was happily surprised.
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This is Debo. He’s awesome. He came with his friend from Michigan. Love this guy.
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Wednesday night dinner consisted of blackened chicken, sweet potato casserole, salad, and corn muffin from Wishbone. I have no idea what they put in the sweet potato casserole but it was TO DIE FOR. It was like Thanksgiving threw up in my mouth. The chicken was delicious too!
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Monday was a rough day so I called room service for dinner. I got the bone in ribeye steak with twice baked potato, and parsnip spinach. I also had the apple crumb with vanilla bean gelato for dessert. The steak was fabulous. Self care complete!
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Thursday lunch consisted of a boxed lunch from Labriola. I got a turkey, bacon, avocado, and fire roasted pepper sandwich with potato chips and fruit. It was very delicious and filling.
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One of my res 2 buddies and I had dinner at the airport because we were waiting for our flights. We decided to eat at the Chicago Bar & Grill at O’Hare. I hate that airport by the way. I ordered a pasta dish with chicken, zucchini, and mushrooms along with a strawberry mint lemonade that had vodka in it. It was a stiff drink but man was it well deserved. It was the perfect way to end residency. I could not finish the pasta until the next day.
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On Wednesday we went out into the community to complete our service project. My group went to Casa Central and worked with senior residents. We went to lunch at La Bruquena, which is a Puerto Rican restaurant. The food was SO flavorful. I ordered the Mofongo Relleno with Camarones. It was SO good. I also had some sweet plantains that another student ordered but didn’t finish.
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Tuesday was a semi-tough day so I ordered room service again. I got the sage roasted chicken breast with potato dumplings, wilted spinach, and wild mushrooms. It was so good! I loved it as much as I loved the steak.
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This is the best chocolate gelato I’ve ever tried. I give the Warwick Allerton room service a 5 out of 5. The food was amazing.
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Tuesday lunch we had Mexican food. I forgot the name of the company but it was okay. I’m from California where we have authentic Mexican food. I got a chicken taco and a picadillo taco with rice, chips, and salsa. The tacos were a bit tougher than I’d like.

It was such a whirlwind and crazy experience. I know next year I will have to visit those food places I wanted to go to. I will definitely visit 360 Chicago with the TILT at night, the Sky Deck Tower in the morning, and the Navy Pier in the afternoon. The weather sucked. It was 35-40 degrees for most days and it rained a lot. I was so pre-occupied with my journal writing for class that I thought flashes out my window was the people in the room above mine taking pictures instead of lightning. It was lightning by the way. Sometimes I just don’t understand myself and how I got as far as I did in life. Haha, until next time. xoxo, J.

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