15 March 2017

rumi middle eastern grill.

you may have seen it on my instagram already, but there's a hot new girl in town & her name is rumi middle eastern grill.

i love everything about rumi. here's why : "at rumi, our goal is simple : to bring you delicious, healthy & wholesome food -- that you love. we have all of your mediterranean favorites. with the variety to accommodate any diet & any mood, we're a delicious & flexible place to come for a quick bite." do you see what i see? any diet & any mood. sign me up!!

yes, that means that rumi's menu is clearly marked with what's vegan (plus, what's gluten-free, y'all!). so no need to worry. does that lentil soup have chicken broth? what's that falafel fried in? does the baba have yogurt in it? these are the questions that plague a vegan at a mediterranean place ... but not at rumi.

here's what i had ...

lentil soup & hummus :
amazing lentil soup for winter time chills? check. on point hummus that you wanna snarf every day? check. i've since also had the falafel, which i am very particular about, but am ready to give two very enthusiastic thumbs up to. 

since this first meal (well, it was the second. we ordered it 2 days in a row at work in december. oops.), i've had rumi 3 more times. it's that good. check 'em out.

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rumi middle eastern grill
1534 n. milwaukee ave.
chicago, il 60622

08 March 2017

columbus tap.

okay, this is another one that goes waaaaay back. i believe to the summer ... the baby & i decided to meet josh for lunch mid-week one day. we ended up at columbus tap, which at the time, i think, was a new-ish spot in the fairmont hotel.

josh had been there a couple times before for drinks, but it was a lunch first for all three of us ... "columbus tap offers a quintessential tap house experience, masterfully blending sophisticated offerings with neighborhood charm." lovely.

here's what i had ...

open faced toast :
crushed avocado, lemon, shaved radish, hot pepper. 
i mean, it's avocado toast. what could be wrong with that?

charred broccoli :
this was literally just grilled broccoli, since the sauce wasn't vegan. which is fine, i like veggies. but, it was just broccoli. 

we gave columbus tap six thumbs up ... two of which were covered in french fry grease & avocado bits ... no, not mine. 

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columbus tap
fairmont chicago, millenium park
200 n. columbus drive
chicago, il 60601

01 March 2017

new orleans : domenica.

okay ... after 2 days in new orleans, i've got to say ... i was hella hungover the day we left. our flight was at 3pm though ... so we had a whole day of sightseeing (aka, finding sandra bullock's house) ahead of us. after some more wandering around the city, i worked up quite an appetite. luckily, a friend of mine down there (hi, hollin!) had given us ideas for lunch.

one in particular stood out to me ... because 1. i knew it had vegan options. 2. i knew it had carbs carbs carbs & more carbs in the form of pizza. 3. it is a john besh restaurant ... (you may recognize him as a guest judge on top chef ... or just because he's kind of a fox.)

so into an uber we hopped & over to domenica we went.

per the website ... "the chefs at domenica restaurant cook regional italian cuisine while incorporating louisiana ingredients, make fresh pastas by hand daily & roast vegetables & meats in the same wood oven that crisps their napolitano style pizzas." gimme pizza, gimme pizza, gimme pizza.

here's what i had ...

vegan pizza : 
this was another time where letting the chef decide what i should eat worked out to my advantage in the best way. this was exactly what i wanted & it turned out to be perfection. i fully intended to eat the entire pie, but only made it through 6 slices. #restraint

domenica was the perfect pick for us that day ...

but, we also went to a different john besh restaurant the night before & it. was. incredible. that would be restaurant august. the service was impeccable. the staff were all so kind. the chef created an amazing vegan dish ... etc. good things. etc. etc. it just wasn't the kind of place i wanted to be flashing my camera & snapping pics all through dinner. so no post for you!

anyway, domenica = awesome. restaurant august = awesome. john besh = eye candy. enjoy! 

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domenica
123 baronne street
new orleans, louisana 70112

22 February 2017

sushi dokku.

okay, peeps. this was a tough one. not because the food wasn't good (it was fine / okay), but because the service was terrible.

sushi dokku had been on our to go to list for a while ... so when it was time for a birthday celebration (happy birthday, c&b ... last september), we decided to give it a try.

per the website ... "the menu is incredibly diverse & ranges from delicate sashimi cuts, to creative nigiri bites & maki rolls, to a japanese-inspired filet mignon for the non-sushi eater in the group." well, this non-sushi eater didn't have a filet, but ...

here's what i had ...

edamame :
warm soybeans & salt.
why i photographed this, i don't know. we all know what edamame tastes like & if you don't, this must be your first day as a vegan. welcome aboard!

cucumber & aged tofu salad :
tomato, red onion, green onion & garlic-soy vinaigrette.
this was actually pretty good. i liked having some protein in my cucumber salad. 

shishito peppers :
always good. 

veg roll :
ok, here's where things completely derailed. we did the "just let the chef make whatever he wants" thing ... this was horrible. maybe he didn't know rice is vegan? because, if not, why would you create / serve such a thing?! it was so slimy ... sorry, chef.

so things (food-wise) went downhill at the end of the meal ... service was bad from the get-go. look, i know this has nothing to do with a restaurant's ability to make a legit vegan meal ... but i just can't send anyone here without this warning ... our server never asked if we wanted more drinks (we did, it was a birthday, come on.) ... our waters were never refilled the entire meal (we were parched.) ... it took forever for someone to bring our bill. (i suggested we dine & dash, obviously kidding ... but that's how long it took.)

give them a try -- but diner beware.

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sushi dokku
823 w. randolph st.
chicago, il 60607