This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I use to get sent to Chicago every other day on the J-O-B!  But I haven’t had a long Chicago layover since we had a hella winter 2 years ago. So I was quite excited to go there this past week.  I wanted to accomplish two things.  Thing number one, I would get to see my cousin, which I’ve been meaning to visit.  And thing number two, I was very excited about going to the beach the next morning.  I was able to see my cousin the night I came in, which I was very much pleased about.  But I woke up to shenanigans the next morning.  Rain!  So my walk along the water never happened.  Pooper! On the up and up, this gives me more reason to come back.  Glad I took pics the night before. I used my old school camera for this layover since my Canon took a crap on me.  And since the lens and digital screen is broke on my back up, half the pics were taken blind. But that didn’t stop my avid blogging.  No siree!  Pics turned out o.k.  Although it wasn’t on par with what I would have liked with the  limited capacity I had.

Before I go any further,  I always say, there is one and only city, New York.  And I love my New York.  I did after all live their for 2 years. So I am naturally biased. And even though I have been to Chi-town along with some pretty nice hotels many times in the last 12 years.  I do have to say, especially with this last visit, I think I have a new found love for it.  More so because my cousin is absolutely in love with this city.  Her enthusiasm about it is at a 10 and I can see why.  Chicago’s buzz is addicting.  Believe the hype.  I haven’t been this excited about Chicago since I use to visit the city when I was a teenager.  Maybe it’s the impending base change I’m hyping myself up for.  Or maybe it’s just that I haven’t been in a while.  The museums, beaches, Midwest hospitality. Great stuff.  Not to say that I’m cheating on my New York.  But Chicago is getting its creep on!  It’s growing on me like a fungus!  I’m looking forward to picking up a few more trips there this summer!  Two toots for Chi-town!  Toot-Toot!

First in order.  Mandatory stops to Garrets popcorn for the all crews.  We make it happen even with the shortest turns.

First things first. mandatory stop

Caramel and cheese!  This stuff stays impressively fresh for days

for some cheese and caramel corn at garrets

Then the limo ride to down town!  Only 50 minutes.  Pretty good during rush hour traffic.  We talked fifty shades of grey to pass the time. Quite the conversation piece.  I felt like I was on an episode of taxi cab confessions.  Nasty.  On the realz!

downtown and hotel bound in the limo.  We got it like that!

Got to the hotel and got a fairly nice view of the Chicago river.

got a view of the Chicago river. not bad!

Then my cuz scooped me up for dinner. Endulged in my inner photographer on the way.

on the way to dinner

Cousin took me to see Mike grandmaster sushi chef

My choices for dinner were Tanoshi or Tanoshi! So I told my cousin I guess I’ll go with Tanoshi

So the low-down on this place is that everyone comes to see Japanese Mike, the coolest sushi man in Chicago.  (I doubt his name is Mike though.)  There were rules to eating here.  No soy sauce and no wasabi! What??  I begrudgingly obliged.  Good thing it was some good stuff.

started off with a tar tar looking thing

I love me some Ceviche and The tar-tar they gave me was smashed down and served on tortilla chips.  So for sure I think this was Ceviche inspired since it was served on tortillas.  The foodie in me started breaking down the ingredients in my head for a home prepped meal.

started off with a tar tar looking thing

Pretty sure this next round had bagoong in it.  If only the customers new.  lol

Round 2

Next was a sushi roll that tasted like tacos or pizza!  I forget!

Round 3. Pizza or tacos?

I love me the BYOB aspect! I thought that was just a Jersey thing. We had a bottle of Pinot Grigio that Liz brought for the occasion.  Good stuff.

Round 4. Stuffed! But there’s no stoppin us…

You asked the master chef what kind of fish and he would just say, “It’s fish”.  That or Asian carp.  Shout out to Adam for that one.

Round 5. Antoinette kept it comin!

Then came dessert.  Mango and I thought it was going to be sweet inside.  Wrongo!  More mystery fish! Very creative. I’m thinking this was Malaysian inspired since I had something similar at Penang.

Round 6. Now someone get me a wheel barrow to roll me outta here

Went to Second city and got us some Starbucks.  I was prepping my body for a red-eye.  So I was red to go for an all niter!

She new I was prepping my circadian rhythms for a red eye so she got me stbx at 2nd city. Thnx coolest cousin tony!

Came back to the hotel and I didn’t really wanna retire for the night so went and took some shots!

Hustle and bustle
perused the river along with the other tourists out that night.
all dreamy. my momentum to take a segway tour that never happened. oops
basking in the somberness of the night

Went back to the hotel and had all the good intentions to work out. And had I not been so full, it would have happened.

back to the hotel and thought about it. but laziness prevailed

But decided to wash up and retire to my room.

back to my room and punched

Now the next morning, I was really looking forward to my meditative walk on the beach, but that ended up being more like wishful thinking. Shenanigans!

woke up to this! Gay!

That didn’t stop me from getting my grub on. Went to the main lobby and managed to get one of the last umbrellas from the concierge.

got an umbrella from concierge and walked to breakfast

“Wild berry” was what the concierge highly recommended to start my day.  And he was right on point to.  Couldn’t decide between the oreo smores, or tiramisu panackes.  But in the end, I was pursuaded to get the wildberry panackes with marscapone!  Glad they persuaded me in that direction.

“wildberry” made the cut on Randolph street. prudential plaza.  just  a few blocks from hotel.
panakes with marscapone
what up 312? from the 313!

Lunch was Giordanos.

The best deep dish I’ve had yet!
Back to the grind at the airport
for a moll-eta opened faced sandwich at frontera. So good!

As always thank you for visiting.  If you have any questions, pleasefeel free to ask, vote 5 stars ;) or even follow me. I have a ton of recipes  on this site you maybe interested in.  I would love that!  I’ll get back with you as soon as I can with your questions and comments. Promise.  Happy eating and have a beautiful day!