Monday, August 09, 2010

I got to visit Chicago this weekend for a bachelor party of a friend (and soon-to-be brother in law). I can't say it enough: I love Chicago. It's a big, metropolitan city with a mid-west attitude.

The bar-hopping scene was amazing. Our tour guide, Ed's brother, lives in Chicago and knows of all the neighborhoods, nooks and crannies that I have never explored or even knew about despite several hundred trips to Chicago in my adulthood.

Some highlights:

--Dinner at Japonais. Holy mother of whatever, this dinner was spectacular. Little slivers of marinaded meat you cook on a really hot rock. Sake martinis. I had a veal cutlet that nearly made me weep it was so good. Bao so delicious it was surreal. After dinner was drinks at their river-level bar outdoors. And an equally surreal conversation with the Drunkest Girl in Chicago.

--Bucktown. Nearly got booted from a bar for tearing their Chicago Blackhawks flag off the wall. Ate at some burger joint at 3:00 in the morning; I ate a burger topped with Spicy mayo, an egg and some bacon. Why embellish what's already perfect?

--Breakfast in the Gold Coast neighborhood. It was...beautiful. Also, mind-bogglingly expensive. Well, breakfast was reasonable. But a 3-bedroom condo sells for $2.5 million.

the obligatory Wrigley Sign photo
--A Cubbies game (they lost 4-3). Cubs were behind 4-1 in the 9th. Cincy's pitcher, some schlep who looks about as old as my son, loaded the bases and then walked 2 cubbies before finally pitching the winning strikeout. Cubs just couldn't bat-in even a fucking single to tie or win the game for God's sake. My seat was fantastic. Old Style beer, by the way, is simply awful. Like I'd rather have a Bud Light awful. Why it's the "official beer of the Chicago Cubs" is probably why the Cubs suck. If they got a different Official Beer (Goose Island, for example, is a fine local brewery) they may do better. Old Style is so bad, I am convinced it is why the Cubs are still cursed. Only obstinance and nostalgia are why this beer still exists.

--Drinks in Wrigleyville right after the game. At which we drank.

I was nearly decapitated by a foul ball
--Dinner at Fogo De Chao, a Brazilian steakhouse. If you have never been to a Brazlinian steakhouse, you are missing out on life. You have a little button with a green side and a red side. If the red side is up, you eat in peace. If the green side is up, you are constantly surrounded by wait staff carrying 6-pounds of meat on huge skewers. They slice off a hunk of whatever kind of meat they are carrying. At one point, I was surrounded by 4 waiters and when the knives and shouting finally cleared away, I have a plate piled high with filet mignon, garlic beer, sausage, chicken legs, strip steak, and various other forms of steak I simply don't remember. They have a salad bar at Fogo, which is funny; I think it's there just so people feel like they have a healthy option. Gentlemen, I ate so much meat I was sweating and I almost fell asleep at the table. Every cut of meat, 16 varieties in all, was simply delicious. One price, all you can eat and I made sure they lost money on me. Beware: if you forget to flip your badge to red, you will never be left alone, and your plate will never get emptied. Not that that's a bad thing...

--More drinks in various bars, including an astonishing variety of Irish pubs.

I made it back mostly in one piece. I should also mention that Lollapalooza and the filming of Transformers 3 were also going on as we were there. We never went to Lollapalooza, but Optimus Prime was driving back and forth on a small stretch of bridge out the window of our hotel. And there were explosions (but whether I mean for the movie or in my bathroom every morning is up to you to decide; I may mean both).


Bob 11:10 AM  

What? No play-by-play of the strippers and hookers? WTF?

Smitty 12:49 PM  

No play-by-play of the strippers and hookers?

I don't kiss and tell.

Bob 12:59 PM  

When the one being kissed does it for money, all is fair.

Jake Moore 12:39 AM  

Cubs suck today. Cubs sucked yesterday. Cubs will suck tomorrow. It's nice in a world of so much uncertainty to know that one thing for sure.

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