Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee

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steveindurham
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2006/09/21 16:01:08 (permalink)

Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee

Just got back on a 7 day tour of the Great Midwest and it culinary delights. Wanted to review it as well as I can remember. Hit several of the roadfood places on this trip. Wanted to share it with everyone.
A great change for this NC native.

Thursday lunch - La Mirage, Arlington Heights, Il. Very nice place with great ambience on Algonquin Road. Hav the Chicken Mirage - nice dish with chicken, artichokes, etc. Very pleasant people working there.

Thursday dinner - nice Italian restaurant in LaGrange, Ill. Can't remember the name. had thier version of Chicken Vesuvio. Very tender. Broccoli as a side dish.

Friday morning - WW wrap at the Bannockburn Club, Bannockburn, Ill. Very good food at this place.

Friday night - Dinner at Miramar in Highwood, IL. Excellent Boullibaise chockful of ingredients. Cuban?French fusion theme. Hopping place on Fri. Night.

Saturday lunch - Billy Goat Tavern, Double Cheeseburger and Old Style.
The burger's not bad and the ambience is better.

Saturday mid day snack/ dinner - Italian beef hot at Mr. Beef. Got there at 3:15 - they close at 3:00 pm. Wass lucky enough to get the last one of the day. Outstanding.

Went to the Grren Mile (Room?) tavern next door. Very cool place.

Sunday morning- Cheese danish from Dominicks. Surprisingly good.

Sunday afternoon - hot dog with grilled onions, mustard at Wrigley Field. Not bad.

Sunday evening - Kung Pao Chicken take out from the Chinese restaurant in Lake Forest , Il. Can;t remember the name. Very good food.

Monday morning - Bentsdens Bakery, Racine, WI. Rapberry Danish -excellent.

Monday morning - Caramel nut roll at Larsen's, Racine , WI. Out of this world. Bought a kringle for a friend.

Monday afternoon - Danish Pasty with onions and beef State Street, Madison - Not very good.

Monday evening - Dinner at Bohdan (Tunisian and Himalayan restaurant in Madison) Lamb stew dish with pot stickers as appetizer. Outstanding . Great ambience.

Tuesday Lunch -Sushi at Wasabi including terriyaki snapper. Very good

Tuesday afternoon -Custard at Culver's. Excellent.

Tuesday evening - Miller Park, Milwaukee. Bratwurst, Popcorn.

Wed. Morning - Benji's , Milwaukee- 1/2 order of hoppel poppel, cheese blintzes and matzo ball soup. Great place, food. The owner's wife is delightful.

Wed. lunch - Solly's Grille - Banana malt, Butterbrger, and Fries. Loved the Banana malt - not a fan of the Butterburger.

Wed. Dinner - Corned beef sandwich at home picked up earlier in the day from Jake's Deli, Milwaukee. Absolutely incredible. No subs in this area compares.

Hit 7 places reviewed on here. Not too bad. Look forward to Pizza and Hot Dogs on my next Chicago trip. I highly recommend this website as a great place for planning a trip.







#1

22 Replies Related Threads

    BuddyRoadhouse
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 16:43:44 (permalink)
    Holy mackerel Steve, you really made the rounds in Chicago! For those not familiar with the area or without a map in front of them, Steve went from the northwest suburbs to the far southwest suburbs, back up to the far northeast suburbs, into downtown Chicago and then on up to the northside of town to Wrigley Field, then way back up to the northeast burbs between Thursday lunch and Sunday dinner! I know that in this wondrous modern day of automobiles and such it's pretty easy getting around, but that's still more ground covered in three and a half days than most natives get to.

    Can't comment on any of your choices until you get to The Billy Goat. You're absolutely correct on your observation of the food versus ambience quotient here. As I stated in a different thread recently, The Billy Goat needs to be considered as a total package. The food alone, although good, is not enough to make this place worth a visit. Add in the history and the ambience and you've got a must stop.

    Mr. Beef was part of our Great Chicagoland Italian Beef Tour that we held back in March of this year. While not the best of the bunch we were all able to appreciate its charms and of course the "Elegant Dining Room". The tavern next door that you refer to is called The Green Door. This should not be confused with The Green Mill, a jazz hot spot since its early days as a speak-easy, which is located further north in the Uptown neighborhood (Broadway just north of Wilson). Both are very cool spots, although I'm guessing only one of them has the original booths and upholstery from the roaring 20s (that would be the Mill).

    Which hot dog did you get at Wrigley? There's only one or two Vienna stands set up there. They are freestanding carts, not the recessed counters built in to the walls. The built in joints are selling some other kind of dog, not the Chicago classic. Not sure why that is but there ya go.

    While I've been to many of the Wisconsin places you've mentioned, and agree with many of your assessments, I'll leave it to the Dairyland locals to comment.

    As for the rest of your trip, it sounds like a winner. You took some chances, you hit some spots that were better than others and you had a little foodie adventure. Sounds like Roadfood to me.

    Thanks for sharing,

    Buddy
    #2
    mayor al
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 16:48:23 (permalink)
    Thanks for the input Steve, We appreciate getting this kind of feedback. Trip reports and quick reviews add a lot to the 'Formal reviews' here. We will have my daughter check out the Dohban in Madison soon!! (I copied your edited correction.)
    #3
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 16:53:55 (permalink)
    Buddy - Have friends in Arlington Heights, our lab in the Chicago area is in Elgin and good friends in Western Springs. I stayed with my friend at Lake Forest. I was on the 4th level at Wrigley so the hot dog wasn't Vienna Beef -That's why it just got the OK. Was going to Gene & Jude's yesterday but just ran out of time (wasn't hungry either). I've been to Gold Coast Dogs before and Bob Chinn's in Wheeling - 2 pretty good places. We actually have a Chicago style hot place in Cary, NC which uses Vienna Beef, sports peppers and poppy sees. I also wanted to go to the Original Pancake House in Wilmette and the Corner Bar (famous Hamburger place in Skokie) but we jest ran out of time.

    It was an awesome trip.
    #4
    Kirsby
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 16:58:25 (permalink)
    I have never heard of a place called Bohdan in Madison. Was it perhaps Bandung on Williamson St? Willie St is a great area for ethnic roadfood. There is an excellent Laotian restaurant there called Lao Laan Xiang. There is also great carribean and jerk food on Willie St, both at Jolly Bob's and Jamerica.

    I love Wasabi. Haven't been there in a while. Might have to make a trip there soon. Great (and extensive!) report!

    -Kris
    #5
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 17:04:11 (permalink)
    It might have been Bandung - Right beside a Laotian place. It's new and was feature in the Madison magazine this month. I didn't write down the name. my friend and I were very happy with our meals - she had the tandori chicken. Great service as well. Very cool area.
    #6
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 18:26:51 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by steveindurham

    Just got back on a 7 day tour of the Great Midwest and it culinary delights. Wanted to review it as well as I can remember. Hit several of the roadfood places on this trip. Wanted to share it with everyone.
    A great change for this NC native.

    Thursday lunch - La Mirage, Arlington Heights, Il. Very nice place with great ambience on Algonquin Road. Hav the Chicken Mirage - nice dish with chicken, artichokes, etc. Very pleasant people working there.

    Thursday dinner - nice Italian restaurant in LaGrange, Ill. Can't remember the name. had thier version of Chicken Vesuvio. Very tender. Broccoli as a side dish.

    Friday morning - WW wrap at the Bannockburn Club, Bannockburn, Ill. Very good food at this place.

    Friday night - Dinner at Miramar in Highwood, IL. Excellent Boullibaise chockful of ingredients. Cuban?French fusion theme. Hopping place on Fri. Night.

    Saturday lunch - Billy Goat Tavern, Double Cheeseburger and Old Style.
    The burger's not bad and the ambience is better.

    Saturday mid day snack/ dinner - Italian beef hot at Mr. Beef. Got there at 3:15 - they close at 3:00 pm. Wass lucky enough to get the last one of the day. Outstanding.

    Went to the Grren Mile (Room?) tavern next door. Very cool place.

    Sunday morning- Cheese danish from Dominicks. Surprisingly good.

    Sunday afternoon - hot dog with grilled onions, mustard at Wrigley Field. Not bad.

    Sunday evening - Kung Pao Chicken take out from the Chinese restaurant in Lake Forest , Il. Can;t remember the name. Very good food.

    Monday morning - Bentsdens Bakery, Racine, WI. Rapberry Danish -excellent.

    Monday morning - Caramel nut roll at Larsen's, Racine , WI. Out of this world. Bought a kringle for a friend.

    Monday afternoon - Danish Pasty with onions and beef State Street, Madison - Not very good.

    Monday evening - Dinner at Dohban on Atwood (Tunisian and Himalayan restaurant in Madison) Lamb stew dish with pot stickers as appetizer. Outstanding . Great ambience.

    Tuesday Lunch -Sushi at Wasabi including terriyaki snapper. Very good

    Tuesday afternoon -Custard at Culver's. Excellent.

    Tuesday evening - Miller Park, Milwaukee. Bratwurst, Popcorn.

    Wed. Morning - Benji's , Milwaukee- 1/2 order of hoppel poppel, cheese blintzes and matzo ball soup. Great place, food. The owner's wife is delightful.

    Wed. lunch - Solly's Grille - Banana malt, Butterbrger, and Fries. Loved the Banana malt - not a fan of the Butterburger.

    Wed. Dinner - Corned beef sandwich at home picked up earlier in the day from Jake's Deli, Milwaukee. Absolutely incredible. No subs in this area compares.

    Hit 7 places reviewed on here. Not too bad. Look forward to Pizza and Hot Dogs on my next Chicago trip. I highly recommend this website as a great place for planning a trip.








    #7
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 18:28:11 (permalink)
    I apologize for the redo. I went to Dohban on Atwood in Madison not Bandung. It's a new place and very good.
    #8
    BuddyRoadhouse
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 21:51:33 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by steveindurham

    I also wanted to go to the Original Pancake House in Wilmette and the Corner Bar (famous Hamburger place in Skokie) but we jest ran out of time.
    I grew up in Morton Grove and Skokie and I have never heard of the Corner Bar or their famous hamburgers. Where might I find this joint for my future casual dining endeavors?

    Buddy
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    stricken_detective
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/21 23:54:51 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by steveindurham


    Monday morning - Bentsdens Bakery, Racine, WI. Rapberry Danish -excellent.

    Monday morning - Caramel nut roll at Larsen's, Racine , WI. Out of this world. Bought a kringle for a friend.

    Monday afternoon - Danish Pasty with onions and beef State Street, Madison - Not very good.

    Tuesday afternoon -Custard at Culver's. Excellent.

    Tuesday evening - Miller Park, Milwaukee. Bratwurst, Popcorn.

    Wed. Morning - Benji's , Milwaukee- 1/2 order of hoppel poppel, cheese blintzes and matzo ball soup. Great place, food. The owner's wife is delightful.

    Wed. lunch - Solly's Grille - Banana malt, Butterbrger, and Fries. Loved the Banana malt - not a fan of the Butterburger.

    Wed. Dinner - Corned beef sandwich at home picked up earlier in the day from Jake's Deli, Milwaukee. Absolutely incredible. No subs in this area compares.
    Bentsdens I never heard of, however, Food Network just did a little blurb about them though. My stepdad remembered the place & concurred.

    Never heard of Larsen's but I am not from Racine.

    Danish Pasty? If it was like a calzone but had ground beef, potatoes, carrots, onion & was baked, they need ketchup. They really do.

    Culvers, meh.

    Miller Park, meh.

    Benji's & Solly's, never been but would love to go.

    Jake's, I love it! LOVE IT!!! I drive there from the 'Shaw to get the good stuff every once in awhile.

    Sounds like you had a good time. :)
    #10
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 04:51:16 (permalink)
    The place in Skokie was near Old Orchard and Central off the Skokie Highway (Hwy 41).
    #11
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 06:58:26 (permalink)
    quote:
    Bentsdens I never heard of, however, Food Network just did a little blurb about them though. My stepdad remembered the place & concurred.

    Never heard of Larsen's but I am not from Racine.



    http://www.bendtsensbakery.com/
    http://www.larsenbakery.com/
    Probably the best known place is http://www.ohdanishbakery.com/
    #12
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 08:52:18 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by steveindurham

    The place in Skokie was near Old Orchard and Central off the Skokie Highway (Hwy 41).


    I think the name was the Corner Island.
    #13
    BuddyRoadhouse
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 15:33:03 (permalink)
    Are you talking about the original location of Hot Dog Island at the corners of Crawford, Central, and Gross Point Roads? Or was this place actually a "bar" as originally stated?

    Desperate to discover the true nature of things,

    Buddy
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    Luvstoeat
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 15:58:23 (permalink)
    Is it possible that the "Corner Bar" is actually Ubaa's???
    #15
    steveindurham
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/22 16:12:43 (permalink)
    It's right off Old Orchard going east. We were going to the subway station at Linden and passed it . I think we made a right on Central to get to Linden and just happened to pass by it and remembered hearing about it. They do sell beer as they have a neon sign in the window. Hope that helps.
    #16
    stricken_detective
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/23 00:20:57 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by MilwFoodlovers

    quote:
    Bentsdens I never heard of, however, Food Network just did a little blurb about them though. My stepdad remembered the place & concurred.

    Never heard of Larsen's but I am not from Racine.



    http://www.bendtsensbakery.com/
    http://www.larsenbakery.com/
    Probably the best known place is http://www.ohdanishbakery.com/

    YEP! My friend from Racine worked @ O&H during High School. We get ours from Racine Danish Kringle. Sounds like a trip to Bendtsen's is in order!
    #17
    soozycue520
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/23 00:58:50 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by BuddyRoadhouse

    The tavern next door that you refer to is called The Green Door. This should not be confused with The Green Mill, a jazz hot spot since its early days as a speak-easy, which is located further north in the Uptown neighborhood (Broadway just north of Wilson). Both are very cool spots, although I'm guessing only one of them has the original booths and upholstery from the roaring 20s (that would be the Mill).


    The Green Mill is a great place!! I try to make it there when I go to Chicago. During the day, it is more a "neighborhood bar", and at night becomes a jazz bar. Great old Chicago gangster trivia. Old Capone hangout, and it still looks like it!!

    Didn't mean to hijack the thread, but "The Green Mill" is one of those "don't miss, off the beaten path" places.
    #18
    phatphil
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/23 12:31:23 (permalink)
    the ubaa and hot dog island are a block apart, both excelent when i grew up in skokie and sarkis was always a favorite
    #19
    phatphil
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/23 12:33:05 (permalink)
    hey buddy is berts pizza still off lincoln ave in morton grove in a old house? i forgot the name of the place a good saucy deep dish pizza one of a kind
    #20
    BuddyRoadhouse
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/24 01:03:15 (permalink)
    Phil,

    Burt sold Pequod's in 1986. He reopened in 1989 two blocks west of the old Fernald address, on Ferris, same distance north of Lincoln Avenue.

    While the original Pequod's seemed to be located in an old house (a common misconception. That building was always a food service structure of some kind or another), the "new" store is located in what was originally the Morton Grove blacksmith shop, dating back to before the turn of the last century. It has just as much charm and ambience as the old place.

    The food is as good as ever. In fact, the LTHforum, a Chicago-centric foodie site just awarded Burt's with one of their 2006-2007 Great Neighborhood Restaurant Awards. Six months ago the members of that board had never even heard of Burt's. I went on their site, clued them in, and now they have declared Burt a near deity, and his food Manna from Heaven! Check them out at www.lthforum.com and do a search for "Burt's". You'll see a very entertaining evolution in opinions as you follow the thread.

    You oughta head back up this way sometime Phil. Stop in for a pizza; you won't be disappointed!

    Buddy
    #21
    phatphil
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2006/09/24 06:27:25 (permalink)
    i do get back home every couple of years and gain ten pounds for every week im in the chi town area
    #22
    lennonlover2005
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    RE: Trip through Chicago, Madison and Milwaukee 2007/08/17 00:51:13 (permalink)
    Hey Steve....For great pasties you have to come to Michigan! The very tip of Mi has some great palces as well as Upper Mi. (Yoopers...;) We perfected them since all the Cornish and Welsh miners came here for the copper mines.
    #23
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