Things to do in Chicago: Chicago Pizza Tour – try 4 different city pizzas in one afternoon!

Things to do in Chicago: Chicago Pizza Tour – try 4 different city pizzas in one afternoon!

I love blogging about unique activities to try out, and how could I call myself a true Chicago chick if I didn’t work to try every amazing pizza place in the city?! Trying out new pizza places is tough for a few reasons. a) Although ironic, pizza can actually be pretty pricey in the city. Especially deep dish, which will run you on average 30 bucks. That’s a lot to “dish” out when there’s over 2200 pizza places in the Chicago area (yup, that’s true, I learned it on my tour!) b) Pizza can take 45 minutes to an hour to bake, so if you decide to try out a new place, it’s a pretty big time commitment. That’s where Chicago Pizza Tours comes into play.Flo & Santos

Chicago Pizza Tours offers various tours de pizza all over Chicago as a cool daytime or nighttime 3-hour tour via pizzabus!  So in the time span you would normally visit one pizza shop, you get to try 4-5 different slices, all while gaining some Chicago and pizza trivia from your knowledgable tour guide.

Pequod's pan pizza
Pequod’s pan pizzaIMG_0080

The tour costs $60, but again, offers a great value for the amount of pizza you get, coupled with a unique experience. You can even do a pizza and cocktails tour for $80, which sounds completely awesome. Who doesn’t love a beer with their slice?

Coalfire Pizza
Coalfire white pizza
Coalfire honey salami pizza
Coalfire honey salami pizza

The stops the tour makes differ depending on the time and day. During our tour, we visited: Pizano’s, Coalfire, Pequod’s, and Flo & Santos. Every piece was so uniquely delicious, I can’t pick a favorite. But I will say, Coalfire’s thin-crust high-temp cooked pizza was baked to absolute perfection. I can’t wait to go back!

Flo & Santos Smores Pizza
Flo & Santos Smores Pizza

Chicago Pizza Tours
27 N Upper Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606
http://www.chicagopizzatours.com/

Unique Chicago Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

Unique Chicago Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth

Although I’d like to think I eat healthy 90% of the time, there’s always room for dessert, and Chicago is a fantastic city to help you satisfy your sweet tooth! This summer, I’ve chowed down on some of the most unique and delicious post-meal sweets and now I’m here to share them with you. If you’re visiting the city or live here long-term, save up your cheat calories and try out these tasty Chicago treats!

5) Amorino Flower Gelato

Flower gelator at Amorino
Flower gelato cone at Amorino

Chicago recently acquired two new Amorino gelato stores and their signature flower cone makes you feel so elegant… before you devour it in two bites because this stuff melts crazy fast! You can add an adorable and tasty macaron in the middle to class it up even more.

Amorino Chicago
838 N State St, Chicago, IL 60610

4) Goddess & Grocer Rainbow Cake

Goddess and Grocer Rainbow Cake
Goddess and Grocer Rainbow Cake

My rainbow cake Instagram picture has been re-grammed a dozen times because it just looks so darn beautiful! This cake is truly a masterpiece, and you can grab a slice at any of their locations. Mmmm taste the rainbow.

Goddess and Grocer
1649 N. Damen Ave
Chicago, Illinois 60647

3) SteakBar De-Constructed Banana Split

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SteakBar deconstructed banana split

Oh MAN was this sundae a joy to eat! It comes on an enormous platter: ice cream, banana slices, toppings, caramel sauce… you name it, you get it. Oh, and there’s a sparkler on top in case you already feel like this dessert isn’t a party.

SteakBar
1500 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60610

2) Firecakes Ice Cream Donut Sandwich (and vanilla glazed)

Ok, Firecakes Donuts gets two pictures because I couldn’t decide which I enjoyed more! The ice cream donut sandwich is literally a donut cut in half stuffed with vanilla ice cream and topped with fudge. Why haven’t we thought of this sooner?? The second place at Firecakes goes to their vanilla glazed donut. Oh my goodness is this thing delicious. Not too sweet, but perfect enough to wake you up in the morning!Ice cream sandwich IMG_0085Firecakes Donuts
2453 N. Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614

1) Hugo’s Frog Bar Chocolate Mousse Pie

Hugo's Frog Bar chocolate mousse pie
Hugo’s Frog Bar chocolate mousse pie

My favorite unique Chicago dessert I tried this summer was the chocolate mousse pie at Hugo’s Frog Bar in the Gold Coast. GOODNESS was this thing worth the double workout the next day, or what?! The piece was as big as my head, and it was so unbelievably delectable and chocolate-y.. I could have eaten the whole thin if I wasn’t there with some fabulous friend, I’m just sayin’. Hugo's Frog Bar

Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House
024 N Rush St, Chicago, IL 60611

What unique desserts have you tried in the Windy City??

Where to Eat in Chicago: Bar Siena

You know my love affair with West Loop in Chicago, so when I found out Bar Siena was opening this past July on W Randoph St, I knew I had to stop by immediately!

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Bar Siena has a beautiful atmosphere and unique decor. The outside patio is small but quaint and full of flowers and shaded tables, and the inside is lit up, rustic, and really cool, complete with a huge bar and TVs to watch your favorite sporting events.

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I ordered the Wild Mushroom Pizza, Kale and Granny Smith Apple salad, and of course, an Oberon beer with an orange slice. My ideal meal! The service was great and so was the food. You can tell that they prepare fresh, real dishes, and I was very pleased with both plates (which soon were very, very clean). Check out Bar Siena’s dinner menu here!

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The restaurant has unique dishes, including sweet corn ravioli and duck mac and cheese to name a couple, and the food I ordered was fantastic, along with the drinks. The prices are a bit steep for the portion sizes, but I’ve learned to expect that from a trendy West Loop restaurant, and the ambiance alone is worth it!

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SISTER TIP: Bar Siena started serving brunch last week! Although I didn’t order breakfast, the dishes looked amazing on other tables, so add that to your list of awesome restaurants for Sunday morning. 🙂

Will you stop by Bar Siena??

BAR SIENA
832 W RANDOLPH STREET, CHICAGO IL 60607

Where to Eat in Chicago: Big Star

I love to go out to eat in the city, especially during the summertime when the weather is beautiful and Chicago is alive! I was craving a great ambiance with some tasty food, so I took my friend to the Tex-Mex Wicker Park favorite – Big Star.

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Big Star is on 1531 N Damen, and offers awesome tacos and margaritas on a fantastic outdoor patio. You’ll know the restaurant from a distance because of its charming bright yellow umbrellas, and doi, the big star, posted up outside. The place is always packed, especially on summer nights, but it’s worth the wait! The tacos are diverse, creative, and filled to the brim with goodness – they run you $3-4, so 2-3 should fill you right up.

Big Star Chicago

We split a chipotle and verde chips and salsa (not complimentary, unfortunately), and each had:

  • Taco de Panza: braised pork belly, tomato guajillo sauce, queso fresco, onion and cilantro
  • Taco de Pescado: beer battered tilapia fillet, chipotle mayo, cabbage, red onion, lime, and of course cilantro.

They were. Phenom. We finished both and felt totally satisfied. With our draft beers, the check total was under 30 bucks, and we had a lovely lunch, if I do say so myself!

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If you have an out-of-town friend, or just want to grab an awesome Tex Mex lunch outside (or inside, in their super cool and chic bar), stop by Big Star in Wicker Park!

SISTER TIP: Big Star is a cash-only restaurant so make sure to grab some mula before you dine!

Big Star 1531 N Damen
Chicago, IL 60622
773.235.4039