Invisible Voices

a voice for the voiceless

An upcoming Chicago visit…

I’m going to be in Chicago very very briefly next week – flying in Monday morning eye-bleedingly early, and flying back out early Tuesday evening.

It is for an incredibly geeky conference, which I’m astonishingly excited about. Luckily my employer was interested enough to agree to pay the entrance fee, which is astonishingly expensive.

So anyway, I’ll be in Chicago briefly. I have time for one dinner for sure, and I’m debating whether to try to scrounge from the “lunch buffet with something for everyone” at the conference (I just can’t imagine that they’ve imagined a vegan will be showing up, and I haven’t asked yet if they’d have food for me), or to head out for some real vegan eats at a real vegan (or vegan-friendly) restaurant for one or both of the lunches.

The location is near metro stops. Or whatever they are called in Chicago!

The conference takes place at the Sheraton Chicago, located near the Chicago River, Lake Michigan, Milton Lee Olive Park, great shopping and better architecture.

The only Chicago vegan eatery I can remember hearing about is the Chicago Diner. Which looks to be a not bad trip via transit, based on my sketchy research.

Anyone know of other places that they’d recommend making the effort to go to?


6 responses to “An upcoming Chicago visit…

  1. laze October 8, 2008 at 11:53 am

    The Chicago Diner’s a must-visit (see ), but for the best-kept secret in Chicago, visit the Oasis Cafe. It used to be in the back of the Wabash Jeweler’s Mall (!), but it may be in a new location now. Google it.

    Here’s a brief review I wrote after going there a few years ago:

    Holy cow was Jen ever right. This place does have the best falafel.

    Located in the back of a jewlery mall and nearly impossible to find unless you know it’s there (it’s next door to To Pho, the one restaurant in the city we had eaten at during our previous visit), it’s definitely worth hunting down during lunchtime. I ordered their vegetarian combination, which happened to be on special the day I was there. For $6 I got the most amazing falafel, unbelievable baba ghanouj, and very tasty humus and tabouleh with a side of soft pita bread. I cannot overstate how good the platter was.

  2. Deb October 8, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    Wow, that link to Jen’s site has a ton of information! Thanks so much, Ryan!

    And also for linking in your review of the Chicago Diner. Looks like I need to save room for dessert when I go!

    Oasis Cafe definitely sounds like a place to visit. Now I just have to figure out where everything is in relation to where the hotel is!

  3. Kelvin Kao October 8, 2008 at 10:06 pm

    I can’t imagine something like Sheraton to have nothing for vegans. However it might be pricy though.

  4. Deb October 9, 2008 at 8:51 pm

    It likely depends on the individual hotels, even within the big chains, so I guess we’ll see. Unless things have changed in 2 years, though, Sheraton as a chain received PETA’s lowest rating because they had no vegan options, and were pretty lackluster in what they said they could provide if given notice. In other words – basic pasta and steamed veggies. Which, you know, given a microwave I could do myself even in a hotel. Bah.

    But that’s okay – even if the Sheraton did something as exciting (for a hotel) as a vegan lasagne, I’m not sure I want to pass up going to real restaurants recommended by vegans! 🙂

    The real question is time. I’m not going to have much of it.

  5. girl least likely to October 12, 2008 at 2:41 pm

    another vote for the chicago diner! i’ve been to karyn’s cooked several times as well, but that one seems more of a like-it-or-don’t kind of place. still, if it’s a lot closer to where you are and getting to the diner will be a challenge, karyn’s cooked is good (imo).

  6. Deb October 12, 2008 at 8:02 pm

    I remember you talking about Karyn’s cooked when you were in chicago not too long ago! I’ll have to look it up on the map to see where they are in relation to the hotel. Always good to have options! Thanks for reminding me!

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