Chicago Food Tour

On Maintenance Day, we headed in to Chicago to do a food tour. We woke up to 17° and snow in Schaumburg, and it snowed most of the morning as we made our way in to the city.

View from the train

We met the small tour group at Pizano’s Pizza, where we sampled both their fabulous deep dish and thin crust pizza.

Pizano’s was founded by Rudy Malnati, Jr., whose father worked at Uno’s pizza where the original deep-dish pizza was invented. There is some question as to who actually came up with the original recipe, but it’s possible Malnati Sr. had a hand in its creation. No matter what the original story actually is, Pizano’s serves up terrific pizza and I will definitely return there next time I’m in Chicago.

After Pizano’s, we walked a short distance to Goddess and the Baker, where we had a delicious, fudge-like brownie. Apparently, the brownie was invented in Chicago at the Palmer House.

More goodies for sale at Goddess and the Baker

Our next stop was Al’s Italian Beef, which serves up a special beef sandwich unique to Chicago. We enjoyed these instructions complete with photo examples on the wall:

The sandwich was tasty and completely different from any other beef sandwich I’ve tried. I opted to put the spicy giardiniera peppers on my sandwich, which greatly enhanced the flavor.

Gratuitous selfie of happy eaters

Next, we walked a bit and took in some sightseeing to take a break from all of the eating. We walked by Millennium Park, where the Cloud Gate had a fine dusting of snow on top.

There’s something so pretty about fall colors and snow mixing together.

Our next stop was the Chicago Cultural Center to see the Tiffany dome, which is the largest in the world. I had never been before and was blown away by its beauty.

Looking straight up at the dome
Because who doesn’t love bacon? Just kidding, there were names of many different authors inlaid in the walls and archways.
A quote to live by!

Our next stop was Sugar Bliss, because of course it was time to eat again! We had delicious mini cupcakes there, and we also bought a few extras to take back to the hotel and give to friends.

Fannie May, a fine Chicago chocolate tradition, was right next door to Sugar Bliss, and we popped in there next to sample pixies (like pralines) and mint meltaways. We were also given a little sample bag to take with us containing a caramel and two more mint meltaways.

Mint meltaway (not incredibly photogenic, but tasty all the same)

Our next stop was Macy’s, formerly Marshall Field’s, where we admired another gorgeous Tiffany dome.

Pigeons trying to stay warm

Our last stop was the venerable Berghoff restaurant.

We had a tasty bratwurst with sauerkraut and a side of spaetzle. Domingos and I both had a beer as well, and the tour was officially over.

I look forward to returning to some of the places we ate at when we’re in Chicago next month!

Back in Schaumburg, we ended up going to Lou Malnati’s for pizza for dinner! Lou Malnati was Rudy Malnati Sr.’s other son (by a different mother), and the pizza there was similar to Pizano’s and just as delicious. I don’t think I could choose between them!


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