Thursday, March 18, 2010

Chicago Restaurant Reviews

I (Vegan Linda) promised links to the restaurants my son and guest, Parker, and I reviewed last Sunday.

India House in downtown Chicago
Service was excellent, food was excellent, menu is quite large, expensive, but worth it! Two thumbs up from my kids (10, almost 6, and 2.5 years so I guess that is a total of six thumbs up). One of the neat things for children is the glass wall so they can see the chefs in action. It is a large restaurant and more upscale than most of the Indian restaurants we frequent. The kids loved the hot napkins after the meal. They are easily impressed. I would love to go back.

Earwax Cafe in Wicker Park Chicago
Unfortunately, they don't have much of a website so I'll link to some reviews, here and here. I don't remember where I first heard about Earwax, but the name makes it hard to forget and it has been on my list of must try restaurants for a while. We needed a place for breakfast Saturday morning so we were up at outside the restaurant a few minutes before they opened. The menu isn't completely veg, but there were so many options it was hard to choose. The serve their entire menu all day so I was tempted to try a sandwich, but we all went for breakfast fare instead. My 2.5 year old had the bagel sandwich (scrambled tofu and vegan sausage, but they were out of point against for being out when we were their first customers of the day, but they subbed fresh fruit which is preferred anyway) with a side of home fries, 5 year old had the vegan short stack (scrambled tofu, their last vegan sausage, pancakes), 10 year old had the banana walnut pancakes, and my husband and I both had the tofu benedict. We did a lot of sharing and it was all very good. Thumbs up all around. The atmosphere is pretty hipster and the waitstaff took a while to warm up (a little to much angst and attitude), but by the end of the meal they were quite sweet to the kids and somewhat attentive. We overheard lots of artsy talk, including the scoop on a movie being filmed nearby. It reminded me of Berwyn Cafe in College Park, MD. We will go again.

Viet Bistro on Devon St. (773-465-5720 1344 W Devon Ave Chicago, IL 60660)
I can't give a completely fair review since we attended a private party at Viet Bistro and did not have a sit down meal at the restaurant. I can say the atmosphere was very nice for a party. We were there for several hours and the food kept coming (they have vegan items on for us requested by the the hostess of the part) and the drinks at the open bar were great (they even made special juice drinks for the kids). The bar tender was very sweet and engaging. The food we tried was quite good. I've heard they are not doing so well. I am guessing price and location have something to do with it. Try this place out if you are in the area and tell your friends! I have a couple coupons for 15% off, just let me know if you would like one.

Last but certainly not least, save room for dessert!

Our hostess for the weekend ordered vegan cupcakes from Bleeding Heart Bakery for our family. The kids are not huge cupcake fans, but they are still raving about these. Very moist, wonderful icing (only one icing fan in the family, but we all had to admit the icing was quite good), and possibly the best cup cakes I've ever eating (vegan or no). The is another place I've been meaning to try. They are woman owned (or it seems couple owned from the website) and just sound plain awesome. I will definitely be giving them more business! Check out the website and drool!

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