Last week, I posted a little update to the new restaurant coming to the Elmhurst City Centre right across the street from the York Theatre . At that time, I didn't know the name, but today we do: One Fifty One Kitchen and Bar. There's that new sign you can see above hanging on the fence if you walk by the site and you can check out their site here . The url is 151 Elmhurst, so maybe that's how people will type it when they search for the location instead of [one fifty one Elmhurst]?? The sign proclaims: An exciting new restaurant concept celebrating the bounty of the Midwest.
Showing posts with the label dining out
I've mentioned a bunch of our 'repeat' activities when we go up to Michigan and a lot of them have to do with food. From Silver Beach Pizza to Uncommon Coffee Roasters in Saugatuck to Crane's Pie Pantry in Fennville to Sherman's Dairy Bar in South Haven to Grampa's Cider Mill in Coloma , we identified over the years a number of places and experiences that we like and continue to go back to each time we visit southwest Michigan. But, I think we've found a new place that we're going to be adding to the rotation: La Chula Mexican Market in Downtown Watervliet. The first time we came across La Chula was last summer when we went to the Arclight Brewery in Downtown Watervliet . Arclight is a BYOF (Bring your own food) place that focuses just on the beer. They had a bbq guy going out in the parking lot and a few menus scattered on the tables. One of the menus was for La Chula and was your typical tacos, burritos, chips + guac stuff. Because the ki
If you're going to Disney World, there are a couple of stressful planning moments. After you've picked your travel days and your hotels, you get to move on to what Disney calls "Advance Dining Reservations" (ADRs) and your ride reservations (Fastpass+'s). If you're staying onsite at one of Disney's hotels, one of the benefits they give you is that you can make dining reservations (ADRs) at their restaurants 180 days out from your first night's stay. Disney opens up the reservations at 6 am eastern on your 180 day mark and for a lot of us, that means a mad-dash scramble to try to scoop up as many of the prime reservations as possible. For most folks, that means places like "Be Our Guest" at the Magic Kingdom and "Chef Mickey's" at the Contemporary Resort and Le Cellier at Epcot. If you don't get on the Disney website at 5 am central, odds are, you're out of luck. The reservations get tied up and everyth
Last night, we went out to the new burger joint down on York Road called HB Jones. After waiting for 10 or so minutes to get a table, we found ourselves in the front room in front of the fireplace. The restaurant is made up of three rooms. The back greenhouse room - where you enter. A middle bar area with high-top tables and a smallish front room that has windows out onto York Street. We had a great table and a nice enough guy for our waiter. On both sides of our table were families with multiple kids, so we fit in just fine. It *was* 5:45 on a Saturday, so it wasn't like we were competing with date night for seats. We'd heard good things about this place. As we were leaving, Nat asked me a question: "Are we too picky?" That's how I'd sum up our experience. Now, granted...neither of us had a beef burger. We both had turkey burgers that were topped with huge amounts of various toppings. It almost seemed like they were trying to cover up an
After watching it under construction for what felt like a year, last night I was able to get to Pinstripes Bowling Bocce and Bistro in Oak Brook. How was it? Meh. The place seems designed like an office building. The food? It was ok. The staff was very helpful and attentive. But...I don't think I'll need to go back. The place is HUGE, though and they have basically the same floorplan on the first floor as they do on the second. That whole second floor is for corporate events and private parties. So, perhaps they're going to do gangbuster business in private events?
Just a few months ago, I posted about 151 N. York Street and what a terrific opportunity existed for a retail spot right in the heart of downtown Elmhurst. Just last week, I was walking by and saw that some signage had sprung up for a new place called "Cocomero" which looks to be selling frozen yogurt and bubble tea. It looks like this is the second location for Cocomer o as they have a spot right on the corner of Wright and Green Streets in Champaign, right across the street from the Alma Mater statue in the heart of the University of Illinois. But, they won't be alone in the froyo business for long as it appears that we're also getting a Yogen Fruz right up York Street in the old Caribou Coffee location. Is Elmhurst big enough for two of these places? And a Coldstone and Brain Freeze? I'm not so sure.
It was almost exactly a year ago that I posted the sad news that Fontano's closed on First Street in Downtown Elmhurst (April 22, 2011 ). This morning, on the way home from Courts Plus, I spotted this bright red sign in Fontano's window that announces some good news: We're getting an Italian Deli called Zanzi's. From the listings, we'll be treated to Paninis, subs, salads, soups, espresso, cold cuts and....wait for it....Daily Specials! Hooray! The place isn't too terribly big, so I'm guessing that they'll focus on the deli counter/sandwich making, but we *could* use a good Italian Deli that sells some packaged goods. I have to travel to either Addison or Westmont to pick up my Scamorza Cheese when I want to make pizzas. Would be pree-tay pree-tay nice to be able to buy that (and other things) right here in Elmhurst.
Hide your kids, hide your wife. There's big news afoot! Attention Chicago and Suburban folks: Shamrock Shakes are NOW available at area McDonald's. The Babe had her first one EVER yesterday and loved every drop of it. Stop what you are doing and get out to McDonald's RIGHT NOW. What's that? Giving our daughter a milkshake while she mindlessly watches tv? Sweet parenting! P.S. Hide your husband, too!
Every time I see a restaurant - or in this case Mike's Meat Market - claim something as "Homemade" it drives me crazy. There is nothing appetizing about the notion of going to a restaurant and thinking about someone making their specialities in their own home kitchen, packing them in the car and then hauling them into their restaurant or store. Housemade on the other hand is much better - because it tells me that whatever this particular item is - it isn't bought from a distributor. Rather, they're putting it together back in the kitchen. I know it is an odd request. Please restaurant operators: Stop with this homemade madness. I don't want homemade. (Oh, and while you're at it, please stop calling anything the "First Annual", too.)
This week, when we were up in Coloma, we stopped by the newest store on Main Street: DW Hammond Chocolates and Fudge. They just moved from Benton Harbor into this cute old building. The place isn't quite that cute inside just yet, but they're going to rip up the gross old carpet and refinish the floors. They have a lot of space, so hopefully someone with a bit of experience can help them gussy the place up a bit. According to the owner (who told us the story ), these guys are the oldest/original chocolate makers in Southwest Michigan - dating back to the 1800's. With the Chocolate Garden already in business across town (Wow...they were just named "Chocolatier of the Year"!), and DW Hammond relocating their business here, maybe Coloma Michigan can become a chocolate hotbed of sorts. Two chocolate stores make a coincidence. But...when the third opens up, we'll have ourselves a trend. We bought some coffee and a small box of assorted chocolate
Seems like just about every time we get up to Coloma, we find a new local product that we can try to substitute for something in our normal grocery store shopping/dining routine. This time it was in the frozen section with Hudsonville Ice Cream. They have a cute 'turn' on the normal "Moosetracks" ice cream that is fitting with the region: Michigan DeerTraxx (Which...looking at the packaging...they've apparently trademarked!) Turns out, they're based in Holland Michigan and have been around for 85 years. We don't buy a ton of ice cream at the grocery store, but Hudsonville Ice Cream will now join the ranks of Pioneer Sugar - which is made from Michigan beets - as a local product we'll give preference to in our shopping.
I recognized that it is a hard word to spell, but a quick search will turn up the proper spelling: giardiniera . This sign is up in the Polk-a-dot Drive-in in Braidwood, Illinois - which is where we dine post-Christmas Tree cutting each year. I learned the lesson (to not order the beef here) the hard way a few years ago. Ever since, I've gone with a dog, minus the ketchup. (Yes...they dress their dogs in ketchup + all the other Chicago-style fixings. Strange.)
We went out to Chili's recently and were greeted with a neat piece of technology on our table. Or at least, on the surface it seemed neat. Promising to eliminate the ' worst part of dining out - the inability to pay your bill and leave when you are ready ', these Ziosk displays are supposed to allow you to order, pay your bill and even entertain you while you eat/wait. Unfortunately, when we arrived, our device was frozen. Then, it went through the boot process and we were stuck with this screen for 10 minutes. When it finally started up, The Babe enjoyed the Puss-n-Boots movie trailer. So, I guess you could say that it was a success. Though, we didn't get to pay with it. Maybe next time.
Before we got on a plane to come back home this weekend, the entire Moran Clan wandered into In-N-Out Burger for a quick meal. Of course, I couldn't help myself and geeked out with a series of "Secret Menu" items . In fact, the only thing that I ordered that is *on* the menu is the Diet Coke. We had 2 Grilled Cheeses, a Double-Double "Animal-Style", our french fries "Well Done", a Diet Coke, and a Root Beer Float. If you know where the Babe's blog is located, you can head over there to see some photos of her enjoying her first In-N-Out experience!
Nat, the Babe and myself made our way to Gene & Jude's . (Or...is it Gene's & Jude's? See the photo below.) Having "America's Best Hotdog" just 14 miles from our house and never eating one is a great point of embarrassment for me. When we arrived, the parking lot was half-full and the line moved pretty fast. They serve "Depression Dogs" that are dressed with just mustard, onions, relish, sport peppers and french fries. I'll be honest? The only thing I missed was the pickle spear (and maybe the Celery Salt), so not having the cukes or tomatoes didn't bother me one bit. It was a delicious dog. And a neat place. This seems to be a place that we can take out-of-towners and give them a feel for what a real stand is like. Can't wait to go back.
Nat and I have been to Labriola's Bakery and Cafe in Oak Brook on quite a few occasions. They're known for their burgers (I think the Tribune said it was one of the best in town), and I typically get the wood-fired pizza. But on our latest trip there, I discovered something new: their gelato. It is kind of tucked away in the reception area and because of where the cash registers are, it isn't super easy to order, but it is worth the hassle. We ordered two kinds: lemon and a combo of Chocolate/Peanut Butter. I (obviously!) picked the choc/pb combo and while Nat and the Babe shared the lemon, I think I hossed the entire container of choc/pb myself. I'm not sure I'll order the burger again, but I do know that I'll be waiting online to get the gelato.
Central Grocery is a small Italian grocery store in the French Quarter in New Orleans. I was down there this week for a conference and this was on my 'NOLA Bucket List' as this is the HOME of the original Muffaletta sandwich. These beauties are stuffed with cheese, salamis and most importantly: olive salad. I've had plenty of Muffalettas and I don't know if it was because I was eating this one in the store where it all began - but this was the *best* sandwich of it's kind that I've ever had. The store itself isn't much to look at. It really is a grocery store with canned/jarred products everywhere. Nat and I had a discussion about this type of place (the sort of local 'food touchstone' that tourists seek out - like Pat's/Gino's in Philadelphia or Uno's in Chicago). Do you think that they had some great PR person back in the day who got them in travel books (before the web) and then it sort of self-propagated itself? Or...do you