Chicago part 1

Chicago part 1

After only a few short days we headed off to Chicago on a night sleeper train from Buffalo. Having read Don Watson’s American Journeys, I’d worried about spending hours in soulless Amtrak stations waiting for late trains, but based on our two trips we were pretty lucky. Yes, the waiting rooms were soulless, but the waits were short. The food on the trains, not so good. I’d tried to phone ahead to order some vegan food, but they only do special meals for lunch and dinner, so we took snacks and ate what we could from what was on offer. Strangely they had vegan margarine, although not much to put it on!

We have seven days in Chicago, broken into two parts by a side trip to Wisconsin to see some more Frank Lloyd Wright architecture.

Our first night we couldn’t get into our preferred accommodation, so we settled for one night elsewhere before moving. Fortunately, Karyn’s on Green was just around the corner, it was Sunday and they were doing brunch. All I can say is wow. Great food, beautiful space. We shared a magnificently delicious club sandwich and beet ‘meatball’ sliders and good coffee.

The next morning we moved to our preferred accommodation in Wicker Park which is a hip, vegan friendly area.

It was a big day. We took a boat trip along the Chicago river with the Chicago Architecture Foundation, looking at huge numbers of magnificent buildings ranging from Beaux Arts and Art Deco to Modern and Postmodern. Before the trip we stopped at the Lyfe Kitchen for lunch, which does a good range of vegan foods. We both opted for the ‘chicken’ burger. My only complaint is, why oh why do vegan burgers have to come on whole grain or whole wheat? This is not health food, I’m eating a burger, I want white.

Chicken burger

After the boat tour, we went on another two hour Art Deco walking tour of several loop buildings.

For dinner we headed to Karyn’s Cooked, another Karyn’s offshoot. I had a wonderful ‘meatloaf’ with mashed potato, mushroom gravy and broccoli, while S had a chilli, cornbread and southern greens combo. We opted for peach pie and a glazed donut for dessert, both delicious.

After something of a coffee drought, our daily coffee needs have been more than adequately provided by the fabulous Caffe Streets, just a couple of minutes walk away. It is just like Melbourne coffee. That’s high praise.


Karyn’s on Green
130 S Green St, Chicago, IL

Karyn’s Cooked
738 N Wells St, Chicago, IL

Lyfe Kitchen
419 N Clark St, Chicago, IL

Caffe Streets
1750 W Division St, Chicago, IL



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