Ohh Chicago, you have my heart. My absolute favorite place to travel to for good food, it’s so easy to keep it clean and full of nutrition at the same time! I grew up just a little over 2 hours from Chi-Town, so it was a place we traveled to often, for either long weekends or even just for a quick day trip. Gav and I traveled to the city a few weeks ago for my first visit to Northwestern, so we made sure to visit all our faves! And of course, in the spirit of the big game against UofM this weekend, I had to rock my MSU hoodie, GO GREEN!
Our first stop was the Purple Pig for lunch Tuesday afternoon, which is a restaurant that features small, shareable plates and a constantly changing menu. Although the restaurant is not geared towards specific diets, the staff is extremely knowledgeable and accommodating to food allergies, just let them know what y0u would like to avoid and they are really great about pointing out dishes that could work for you. Some of my favorites that I’ve tried here are the chicken thigh kabobs (pictured right) with smashed, roasted potatoes, bone marrow, roasted cauliflower,and pickled beets with whipped goat cheese (insert all the heart eyes here). We never make it out of Chicago without stopping here, its a family favorite and I HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommended it!
The Grange Hall Burger Bar is located in Chicago’s West Loop. The West Loop is a super trendy little neighborhood full of tons of unique restaurants to dine at within walking distance to each other, a must if you haven’t been! Grange Hall is a true farm to table restaruant and has a very special place in Gav and I’s hearts; Angela, a chef and the owner of Grange Hall, as well as White Horse Farms Catering, catered our wedding in June with a very similar menu to what she serves at her restaurant. Almost 4 months later and people are still talking about the food at our wedding! Angela owns a farm, in St. Joseph, Michigan, where she grows all the produce and raises grass fed cattle that are used for the burgers served at Grange Hall. I’m not kidding you guys, her burgers here are to DIE FOR, and they are about as healthy and clean as you can get when eating a burger. Angela, as well as her staff, are very knowledgeable when it comes to ingredients and are very happy to accommodate any allergies. I had the Ultimate Burger without the bun and a deliciously fresh, organic, mixed greens side salad with blackberries, lots of avocado, and dressed with balsamic. To top it all off, all the condiments that are not prepared in house are Sir Kensington’s!
Hi-Vibe is an organic, superfood, juicery that we walked to from our hotel (we stayed just a few blocks from Michigan Ave. at a hotel specifically for Northwestern patients). It’s a small little shop with very unique options that you most likely will not find elsewhere. There are no seats or tables here, so it’s more of a grab and go place, which we didn’t mind since we had a nice long walk back to our hotel. Every day they make fresh, specialty, juices, coffees, and smoothie bowls (even Keto options!). I was pretty thrilled with this find, it’s always my mission to find new, unique places while traveling. This morning, I wanted somewhere where I could get a yummy BulletProof Coffee, and I absolutely got that! I ordered what was called “The Sludge” which was a BulletProof coffee blended with Tumeric, Cinnamon, Collagen, and Maca Powder. Literally, Heaven in a cup, I kid you not(I even recreated the recipe as soon as I got home, you can find it here). Gav ordered an Acia berry smoothie and he definitely approved as well. The staff at Hi-Vibe were extremely welcoming and really fun to talk to, they were happy to answer any questions with very through explanations, you could tell they knew there stuff and I actually learned a few new things while I was there!
Right across from our hotel was an outdoor park with a track, pull up and dip bars. I knew with the day ahead of me I needed to get those endorphins pumping, it’s amazing what a good workout can do for me on stressful days! We woke up before breakfast and ran two miles followed by 3 rounds of pull-ups until failure.
I grew up in the Southwest corner of Michigan, about a 45 minute drive south…
One of the perks of moving away from my little, beloved, corner of Southwest Michigan…