How I Ate My Way Through Barcelona: 50th Birthday Celebration

It had been 25 years since I visited Spain.  My memories of Madrid, Toledo, Costa Del Sol and Cordoba are still quite vivid.  The sights, the smells, the food.  Yet, I had an overwhelming need to correct a wrong.  I never made it to Barcelona.  On May 11th, I would be celebrating my 50th birthday (yikes!) and I thought it appropriate to do so in style and with great food.  Here’s how I ate my way through Barcelona.



First off, let me say that Continue reading

Labeled: "Best Of..." Lists · Barcelona · Restaurants/Bars
Where to find the best restaurants in Pilsen

Pilsen is a fabulous section of Chicago which is rich in Mexican-American history.  Perhaps, no other neighborhood in Chicago reminds me more of the Latino neighborhoods in Queens where I spent most of my life.  Walking through Pilsen is a sensory experience of colors and smells that will make you hungry, so I have  Continue reading

3 Pilsen Brewpubs, Haisous Vietnamese Kitchen

Chicago is known for its rich beer culture in the form of diehard corner bars to upscale restaurants from the north side to the south side.  Breweries have been popping up all over The Windy City for the last few years and the Pilsen brewpubs, in particular, have caught my attention.  There is also a fantastic new Vietnamese restaurant in the Pilsen neighborhood that is my new favorite among Chicago’s Asian Restaurants.  Ditch the car and follow me on Chicago’s ‘L’ and buses to the following Pilsen brewpubs and Haisous Vietnamese Kitchen.


Alulu Brewpub


What:  Alulu Brewpub is a split-level, relaxing, rustic space with creative craft beer made on site.  The suds here are constantly changing to keep things fresh and interesting.  I loved the cark Baltic Porter which had 8% alcohol and creamy, chocolate flavor.  The food options here are all made to order and fresh.  I enjoyed the hot, crispy veggie lumpia made with chickpeas, potatoes, water chestnuts, onions, garlic, spinach, and carrots.  Don’t forget to splash some of Alulu’s tangy hot vinegar sauce on top!  The kale and couscous salad with sheep’s milk croquettes is also a great complement to any dish on Alulu’s menu.  I am excited to check out their new brunch menu.


Pilsen brewpubs Alulu beer menu

Dark, chocolate Porter is creamy with smooth finish


Pilsen brewpubs Alulu in Chicago

Veggie lumpia at Alulu


Pilsen brewpubs Alulu Brewpub

Kale and couscous salad with sheep’s milk croquettes, vegetable lumpia and Baltic porter at Alulu Brewpub

Where:  2011 S. Laflin St.  Take the #21 Cermak bus (connect at the Cermak ‘L’ stops on the Green or Red Lines) to Laflin St. and walk 1 1/2 blocks north. 


Moody Tongue Brewing Company


What:  This clandestine brewery/tasting room is one of the special Pilsen brewpubs that Continue reading

Chicago Food Scene – 4 Neighborhoods

Hey, foodies!  It’s been a very tasty week out here on the Chicago food scene.  As usual, I traversed The Windy City using the ever-so efficient CTA trains and buses.  The ‘L’ and the buses are still the fastest and most environmentally-friendly way to explore Chicago.  So leave your car at home and ride the rails to the following delicious spots spanning four different neighborhoods from the north side of the Chicago River to the south side.  




If you are in the mood for some barbecue, an excellent beer selection, and a fun patio on which to enjoy it all, Sheffield’s Beer & Wine Garden is an essential Chicago spot to check out.  This place is like Cheers.  Whether you live in this neighborhood, or you are looking to Continue reading

10 Best Burgers Chicago You Must Have!

After careful research, I give to you my picks for the 10 Best Burgers Chicago has to offer, accessible via mass transit.  Get out, hit the rails and grab these tasty bites!

**Click on the restaurant names for more information and directions.  


10.  Butcher & the Burger


If you are in Lincoln Park and you’re craving some custom-made burgers, I suggest you head to Butcher & the Burger.  This place makes its own spice blends for the burgers, it’s a BYOB and it has a butcher shop.  So, grab some burgers (or breakfast) and do some food shopping for the week.


Start off with a cup of chili!



Best Burgers Chicago Chili at Butcher & The Burger



I loved their salmon burger.  



Best Burgers Chicago Seafood at Butcher & The Burger

Loved this Salmon umami burger!



9.  25 Degrees


While this River North joint serves breakfast, craft beers, and boozy milkshakes, you don’t want to miss the burgers.  They are all pretty tasty but I really dig Continue reading