Brown Bag Seafood

15 08 2014

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Lakeshore East is one of my favorite neighborhoods. Yes, I am biased because we lived there for 2 years but this little hidden gem on Lake Michigan and steps away from Michigan Ave is just the best…and now it has Brown Bag Seafood.

I was starvation city last night after Flywheel but wanted something fresh, healthy, that wasn’t a sit down restaurant but also wasn’t Whole Foods. Brown Bag Seafood fit the bill and then some. I grabbed one of their “brown bags” (piece of paper with all the food options), marked down what kind of fish I wanted and how I wanted it prepared (tacos, salad, sandwich, plain, etc) and obviously checked the box for a glass of wine and a few minutes later…dinner.

After much debate (and the help of the sweet man taking my order), I went for the Power Pack: white fish on top of a red quinoa & wild rice blend atop spinach with lemon and herbs. But with 4 different types of tots, I will be back soon to try those and the fish tacos. And probably a sandwich. Such a fun find, this urban fish shack!

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RPM Steak Opening Party

10 08 2014

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There are some plans I have to remind my husband of multiple times…attending the Opening Party for RPM Steak was not one of them. From the second we were invited, August 9th at 7pm was top of mind- I would imagine it had something to do with visions of steak and manhattans dancing in his head.

The new space at 60 W. Kinzie is beautiful. Huge and airy with the same sleekness RPM Italian has but toned down to highlight what’s clearly the star of the show: the steak. Chef Psaltis was on hand serving up quite the spread and while I first congratulated him on the gorgeous new restaurant, Ryan went back and congratulated him on the steak. He was wildly impressed with everything from the ribeye to the lamb chops to the skirt steak.

Me? Glass of champagne in hand, I was happy as could be…and then I made my way upstairs to what will be the private dining space and found lobster and oysters perched atop a bar made entirely of ice. Jack.pot.

Also to be noted: dessert. Mini lemon sorbet baked Alaska. Basil hazelnut cream puffs. Yes.

It was such a fun, almost interactive date night. We walked around, sampled the food, ran into some people we hadn’t seen in ages, caught up on our weeks. There’s no official opening date announced yet but a waiter told us that Bill Rancic (partial owner) told them 10 days so get ready to snag a reso- I know we can’t wait to try RPM Steak in full.

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31 07 2014

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“I’d rather be a lamp post in Chicago than a millionaire in any other city.” William A. Hulbert





Local (Coffee) Buzz

29 07 2014

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My coffee consumption is typically pretty utilitarian- I grab a cup from Starbucks to go before I start my work day or for a walk and on weekends, we use our Nespresso. But today I needed an afternoon pick-me-up and instead of finding the nearest ‘bux, I ducked into BowTruss and ordered a pourover…not to go. In a glass mug. And took a call while sitting on their little patio. It was so lovely and the opposite of utilitarian- it was enjoyable.

I don’t claim to be a coffee expert but in the spirit of great local coffee houses, here are a few of my favorites that I am going to make a point to hit up more. Anything to add to my list- please comment!

Heritage Bicycles: 2959 N. Lincoln|The people demand bikes and coffee and treats from Little Goat.

Bow Truss Coffee Roasters: 2934 N. Broadway & 406 N. Wells| beans roasted right here in Chicago by some of the friendliest people you’re likely to meet.

The Coffee Studio: 5628 N. Clark| the space is what does it for me here- it’s a must stay, must sit, must create/connect/cappuccino kind of place.

Buzz: Killer Espresso: 1644 N. Damen| Really great lattes and their staff wants to teach you about how they do what they do while they do it. Cool.

Cafe Tola: 3612 N. Southport| I don’t know if this counts as a coffee shop but I love their spicy mocha, cold brew and they have empanadas. And sprinkle donuts. And this is my list and I get to say what goes on it. Oh and there’s this ledge against a painted wall for you to balance your coffee & donut/empanada on that I get a kick out of.

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Link Love

25 07 2014

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Despite being Italian, I never really got Italian Ice. After going to Anthony’s last night…I get it. 2 scoops, chocolate and coconuts- do it.

Cheeky Chicago is hooking you up with rooms at the Swissotel for $109 a night. Last minute vacay (or staycay), anyone?

Travel has made such an impact on my life and I am so excited for the “adult” travel plans we have for the next few years but this list of travel experiences you have in your 20s…yup. Spot on. And awesome.

I don’t hate celebrity lifestyle websites for the sake of hating celebrity lifestyle websites and I really like Blake Lively…but I am not sure what the hell is happening over at Preserve.

Coobah is closing. I just…I know Coalfire is opening but…my neighborhood caipirinhas and queso fundido!

I had the most amazing kale salad at Blue Door this week and I can’t stop thinking about it. I hope to go back this weekend and add the blueberry pie to my order. :)





The Time the Cubs Won A Game

17 07 2014

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The day before our wedding, we took all of our guests to a Cubs game. Part of why we had such an intimate wedding was so we could do things like that- we love our city and giving our guests a full Chicago experience was high on our priority list!

After a some bloody Mary’s and sangria at our condo, our party o’30 walked over to Wrigley and settled in for what turned out to be an awesome game. Home runs! Bases loaded! Actual points being scored! Cubs win!

It’s safe to say that I have not been to many games like that.

I was going through the last bag of wedding things this evening when I found the above newspaper clipping. My parents saved the paper from our wedding day that had the Cubs score on it. Such a momento, for so many reasons.

Sigh. Family love.

Chicago love.

Cubs love.

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This City

25 05 2014

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I thought 2 things on my run this morning: 1) There is truly nothing better than starting the day with a good sweat and 2) God, I love this city.





Elle on the River: Thumbs Up

13 05 2014

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Sneak peak. Tacos. Punch. The Langham.

That’s basically all I heard before I accepted an invitation to check out Elle on the River, The Langham’s new outdoor concept that opens on Thursday. The short story is that they are offering 4 tacos, 3 punches and Ell-e’s, which are popsicles on creamy pillows of joy, basically.

The long story is that Elle is an extension of everything that is amazing about The Langham and Travelle- the impeccable service, the inventive drinks, outstanding food- and puts it with an outdoor gazing view of the river and the skyline. And the taco shells are made out of chickpea flatbreads. And they are glorious. The punch is great too- who doesn’t love punch????

So…if you need me this summer, I will be sunning myself at Elle on the River, a taco in one hand, a glass of gin punch in the other. What a great addition to the river- you nailed it again, Chef Tim!





7 05 2014

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Blue skies, (more) promising temperatures…despite the fact that this week feels about a decade long, Hump Day is over and this weekend is going to be legitimately Spring. Amen!





Some Cheeky News

16 04 2014

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chee•ky (chē’-kē) adj. : definitively bold; impudent and saucy

I am SO excited to share that I am taking this show on the road- I am now a featured contributor over at Cheeky Chicago!

Cheeky is an online lifestyle magazine designed to connect the bold, fun and fabulous women of Chicago with exciting happenings all over the city and content to inspire you to be your cheekiest self.

My first article is an interview with life-pro Allie LeFevere who is helping women all over the world live their best lives. It went live this morning and you can check it out here.

I will, of course, be posting here daily but keep an eye on Cheeky Chicago as I will be popping up from time to time over there too! I am so appreciative of this blogging and writing community that has so graciously allowed me to share my words- thank you so much for reading.

Lots of love and Cheeky’ness,

Nina

 








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