Well, to start, I had one last hurrah of a summer-hour-Friday! Nick met me downtown for lunch, as he never does that and could — don't you love it when a plan comes together? We both had a couple of spots in mind, but I also asked a co-worker, who often eats out in The Loop. Without hesitation, he suggested that cooking show guy, Rick Bayless' Frontera Grill — which also topped both mine and Nick's short-lists. Only, make of it what you will, I was thinking Frontera Fresco, which is Bayless' concept fast food joint located on the 7th floor of the old Marshall Field's (now Macy's). Said co-worker's second suggestion was a spot which he had just tried-out called English — that's right, folks, only English.
Half expecting an amped-up, chichi pub, I was somewhat surprised to find a chichi, seemingly hip restaurant which would gracefully transform into a River North night spot. Nick and I were sat before the opened bay windows where we both munched fish n' chips, alternately dipping between curried ketchup and remoulade (uh, tartar sauce) and dousing all in ample amounts of malt vinegar.
I washed my fish n' chips down with a short pint of Guiness. As we were tempted by the Pimm's Cup, but in the end decided they just wouldn't go, we decided we'd have to stop by after work some evening, sit at the dark, wood bar and indulge.
Following lunch, we made our way east down Grand, past the Magnificent Mile, to The Lake. We sat ourselves under a tree at the Ohio Street Beach, then made our way to The Navy Pier where we caught our bus back to the real world.
Not so shabby a start to my good weekend: good food, lounging at the beach... so, what have i got planned for the rest?
At some point, I intend to march myself down the boulevard (Logan Boulevard, that is) and hit the Logan Theater for a movie. The Logan Theater's a bit dodgy, but 100 years-old and magnificent nonetheless — the clincher, it's a dollar theater. So, I'll be taking in the sights and sounds (the smells will no doubt be those of an old, crumbling theater) of Paris with a gourmand rat, that's right, I plan to see Ratatouille.
I'll also be making the trek to the Pilsen neighborood Sunday evening, where I'll perhaps partake in some Mexican food, but certainly plan to listen to a friend play records and celebrate another year of hard-work at The Skylark. And on Labor Day, no, I'll not be toiling — I'll be touring The Chicago History Museum and perhaps picnicking at The Lake.
Good weekend indeed. So, how will you be celebrating a years worth of endeavor, burning-the-candle-at-both-ends, slugging-away... ?