My first trip to Chicago was a whirlwind, four of us coordinated to converge on Chicago from Boston, Toronto and Michigan to surprise Mel for her 25th birthday. Mel was stunned and it was the first time I saw more of Chicago than O’Hare. We did quite the tour around town where I fell in love with the waterfront and was introduced to Molly’s cupcakes. I loved Chicago.
It’s been a year and a half since I was last in Chicago and a lot has changed. They have Pinkberry, Sprinkles and Crumbs now so it was only fitting that we combined a bit of old and new loves.
For lunch on Saturday we went to The French Market. As much as I love prosciutto on a crusty baguette (from Pastoral) I decided to eat at RAW instead.
I’d sampled a few delicious offerings on my last trip so I wanted to try a main course, not to mention I needed something healthy after eating a bucket of Pinkberry the night before. Enter the vegan, raw “Salmon” sandwich on bavarian sunflower bread.
The “salmon” sandwich came with two sides. I didn’t like the veggies but the nut/toasted flakes were tasty; I ate some and saved the rest for later.
The faux salmon was made with a butternut squash base (no fake meat or anything weird!) which was pretty tasty!
The bread was tasty as well, although some bites had an overpowering caraway seed taste. Overall it was good but not as amazing as the zucchini noodles I tried last trip.
As soon as we left the French Market it started to rain. Being the prepared traveller that I am I’d brought a little umbrella with me to Chicago. However, the weather had been gorgeous when we left for lunch so at that exact moment the umbrella was keeping Mel’s floor dry. That was great except it wasn’t keeping my leather purse dry. Obviously I did what any good girl would do and I sacrificed my hair to the rain in order to hold my purse under Mel’s umbrella.
Luckily it didn’t rain all day and the skies were clear by late afternoon when we took a break from shopping to lineup for Sprinkles cupcakes.
There is always a line and the cupcakes are always worth it.
I opted for a black & white (chocolate cake, white icing).
Per usual we also split a red velvet (on the left, below).
Both were perfection!
For dinner we returned to my favorite Mexican restaurant, Des Colores, where we started with the guac.
The guac included cucumber which was different than what I’m used and added a fresh taste.
Complimentary chips and spicy salsa were also consumed.
My first experience at Des Colores was so mind blowing that I ordered the exact same thing; chicken fajitas. Chicken marinated in citrus and white wine sauteed with peppers, onion and tomato’s.
I’ve been dreaming about the marinated chicken for a year and a half!!
The fajitas are served with salad, beans and white poblano corn rice.
Of course there was also some horchata on the side.
What’s that saying, you can never go home again?
My meal was delicious but a few things were different. I didn’t like the corn tortilla’s (IIRC last time they were white) so I ate my meal with a knife and fork which wasn’t necessarily bad – less calories after all! And while I enjoyed the white rice I missed the red rice from my last visit. Overall it was still a fantastic dinner!!
We were all so stuffed from our meals we didn’t even attempt the luscious tres leches cake for dessert and walked most of the way back to Mel’s where we stayed up chatting for hours. Great night!