July 27, 2006


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If yr coming to town for Pitchfork/Warped/Lolla, here's my suggestions for a good time, reprised from last years post on the same:

Chavas Tacos - it's on Grand, right before Western. Tacos are $1.25. Get 3 of them because they are teeny. Also, get chips with salsa, also $1.25. Get the salsa that the mix of the green and red salsas, they will also throw in some onions and cilantro, and you will not be able to stop horfing it down until it is way too late. If you are veg/vegan, FYI, they fry yr shit up right next to the lingua-meat tacos. The best thing about Chavas is the medium sized statue of a comically well-endowed bull that is positioned so if you want to check them out making yr food, or say "Can I get guacamole on there too?!" you have to say it through the bull's undercarriage and try not to get caught staring/laughing at the bull's pendulous balls. 1.5 miles from the park. 2006 Addendum: If you need Mexican food and it is after like 8 pm (Chavas closes early, but also opens at 5 am), just go to Chicago Avenue, west of Ashland (away from downtown)--you got options til dawn. If you are hungry and it's late-late, don't let someone bullshit you into going to Pick Me Up or Hollywood Diner. Go to someplace around Chicago & Wood, you'll do fine. PS. Get a Topo Chico (?) to drink. You will thank me for it later.

Handlebar - it's on North, 1 block east (before) Western. They got actual delicious vegan food, cheese plates that'll make you cry and the catfish tacos will make you want to move here. It's also the bike messenger bar, if you are looking for rowdy tattoo'd dudes in shortpants to oggle. 2 miles from park.

Red Hen Bakery - Milwaukee, 1/2 block east of Damen - in wicker park aka "the crotch". On the weekends only, they have this thing, I beleive it is made by God, or possibly Allah. It is called Chocolate Bread. Also see: Alliance Bakery on Division, half a block east of Wood. I think it's called Alliance, but I think I am confused because that's also a bakery in Mnpls. 1 mile from Union Park.

Atomix - Punk staffed/independently owned coffee shop. They have wireless internet there, small meals, muffins and cookies and coffee and all kinds of iced teas. Chicago & Damen.

Earwax - Milwaukee 1/2 block west of Damen next to American Apparel. Tons of actual decent vegan/veg options, and meat too, big patio, DJ Shadow records on eternal repeat. Coffee is kinda gross there, but the espresso milkshake is the jam. 1.5 miles blocks or so from park. Right off the Damen stop blue line.

Myopic - across the street from Earwax - awesome, huge used book store.
Open til midnight. Our BFF, JR, is working all weekend. Let him recommend you a book or two; their prices are reasonable and staff has bookworm love for days.

Zines/comics are at Quimbys and Quimbys is on North Ave, 2 blocks east of Damen.

Soul Vegetarian - It's on 75th and Harlem. Vegan soul food rest. run by the African hebrew Israelites with connecting juice bar. Is the best out of all the soul veg's. Sunday's they only have the dinner special, rather than full menu. Do not sweat it. Just go. I have no idea how to get there on the train, but if yr driving, it's a full 16 mins on 90/94 towards Indiana, exit 75th, go left, 2 blocks, is next door from Eternity Juice Bar. probably 9 miles from the park. 2006 Addendum: There is a lot of racist-ass ramp elimination going on down there, it can make exiting tricky. Also, if you keep driving down 75th, there are a minor slew of Jamaican joints and the like -- goat sandwiches and also vegan stee.

Garfield Park Consevatory - Garfield Park and Lake. You can take the green line. Conservatory is free, open til 5 daily, is totally magic, designed by Jens Jensen in 1909. The fern room is awesome, the cactus room is awesome - even if you do not give a solitary shit about plants. It's one of those places that, in kids books, kids run away from home and camp out/hide/stow-away at. Maybe 3-4 miles from the Park. You can take the blue line to the loop, hit the Green line there. 2006 Addendum: DID I MENTION THAT IT IS FREE and you can see the world largest indoor palm nut*?

PS--but this is really if you have a car or a little time to burn on blue line--the giant stretch of Indian resturants that will do you right is up at Devon and Western. Go West on Devon.

PPS--If you have a specific question about Chicago thing, I am totally happy to try and answer you. I do not want anyone to have a bad time in Chicago because they are working off of the VICE or SPIN or Blender guide or something.

(* yeah, har har, make all the nut jokes, but, it's a giant acorn that is like 6 feet tall with huge palm tree coming out of it.)

Posted by Jessica at July 27, 2006 11:32 PM | TrackBack