Posted by: Travis | February 5, 2009

Bourdain in Chicago

As much as i love food, i don’t follow that many food/cooking shows. Bravo’s Top Chef is a guilty pleasure of mine that i never miss. Daniel Boulud has a great show called “After Hours” that i really enjoy, but don’t get to see enough of. The last one is Anthony Bourdain’s ‘No Reservations’ on Bravo where he travels around the world eating all kinds of food. Though i’ve heard that Bourdain’s chops as a chef may not be that great, i love the guy more as a food writer/personality. If you haven’t read the book that made him famous, Kitchen Confidential, and you’re interested in the life of a chef, or you just like a smart ass sense of humor, it’s worth checking out.

While i never miss an episode of Top Chef, the other two shows tend to stack up on the DVR and i end up deleting most of them without watching. However, when i saw that the episode of ‘No Reservations’ from Monday was based in Chicago, i had to check it out. I watched it this evening as i was riding my bike on the trainer.

So where in Chicago did he go?

  • Hot Doug’s – Legendary Chicago hot dog place we visited when we went to Chicago. Glad to see Bourdain do the place justice.
  • Avec / Blackbird / Publican- Another awesome place we hit on our trip to Chicago. Though Bourdain didn’t actually go to Avec in the show, he talked about how it’s one of his favorite restaurants. All the places are owned by the same guy, so Bourdain spent a night hanging out at the guy’s house eating and drinking with his staff.
  • Burt’s Place – Epic Chicago style pizza place. Bourdain’s from New York and hates deep dish, but this place converted him. Next time we’re in Chicago, consider the place visited.
  • Calumet Fisheries – Sells the freshest smoked fish you’ll ever eat on the south side of Chicago. I might have a hard time getting Rachel to go, but that doesn’t mean i won’t try.
  • The Silver Palm – Has a sandwich called the 3 little pigs that has a pork cutlet, sliced ham, bacon, 2 fried eggs, and gruyere cheese. OH. MY. GOD.
  • Moto – Molecular Gastronomy place with a Japanese theme that tends to place second fiddle Alinea, but has a more out there, flamboyant style. I’ll be checking it out at some point, but it’s definitely behind Alinea.

Two out of six for our trip in the fall, not bad. Can’t wait to get back to Chicago. Love that city.


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