Category Archives: USA – Chicago

Sprinkles Cupcakes – Chicago

A block away from our hotel is Sprinkles, the cupcakery from LA!

Sprinkles is considered the first ever bakery dedicated to only cupcakes.

Earlier this year, Sprinkle’s cupcake ATM machine made the news as the first cupcake atm ever! I didn’t try this because it costs 50 cents more for an individual box.

dog-friendly cupcakes!

We brought it back to Vancouver and had it the next day. The cupcakes were still intact and tasted very fresh and moist!

From top left CW:

Dark chocolate (Belgian dark chocolate cake with bittersweet chocolate frosting)

Black and White (Belgian dark chocolate cake and creamy vanilla frosting)

Coconut (Madagascar Bourbon vanilla cake is topped with coconut cream cheese frosting)

Red Velvet (with cream cheese frosting)

Loved the cupcakes! so moist and not too sweet!


Sprinkles Cupcakes

50 E Walton St  Chicago, IL 60611, United States
+1 312-573-1600


Portillo’s Hot Dogs – Chicago

Apart from being famous for deep dish pizza, Chicago is also famous for their hot dogs.

We went to Portillo’s as it’s the most famous vendor for Chicago-style hot dogs. It’s featured on Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins and Dives!

The restaurant is self serve.. sorta reminds me of a food court… but it’s way nicer.. it’s decorated like an All-American theme park!

Chicago-style hot dog (mustard, relish, freshly chopped onions, sliced red ripe tomatoes, kosher pickle and sport peppers piled onto a steamed poppy seed bun)….. In Chicago, ketchup is banned for hot dogs… hence, all the other toppings.  Since I don’t like relish, onion, pickle, nor pepper..I ended up picking everything out and just had a plain dog with tomatoes…   The sausage is just steamed.. not even grilled! Didn’t really like this hot dog style…

Italian beef sandwich… this was pretty good.. lots of beef!

chicken pecan salad (lettuces topped with tender chicken, crunchy bacon, red cabbage, tomato, a shredded cheese blend and pecans topped with honey dijon dressing)..

FAIM? un peu….

Portillo’s Hot Dogs

100 W Ontario St  Chicago, IL 60654, United States
+1 312-587-8910

Argo Tea – Chicago

My BFF told me to try argo tea.. it’s everywhere in the city! Anyhoo.. we didn’t get a chance until we were waiting for our flight @ O’Hare airport.

photobombed by bro…

L: Tea Sangria (hibiscus tea with apples, oranges and grapes).. sangria.. but tea version.. pretty good!

R: Earl Grey Vanilla Creme… tasted like medicine…

FAIM?  un peu….

Argo Tea

various locations around Chicago… but we went to the stall @ O”Hare Terminal 3

Garrett Popcorn – Chicago

Another must-eat in Chicago is Garrett Popcorn.  There’s one in Hong Kong, so I’ve tried it before.. but since we’re at the place where it originated.. we had to go!

We got the classic Chicago Mix (caramel and cheese).  I love the caramel.. but after eating a few caramels.. it gets to sweet and I have to neutralize it with the cheese.  I also sampled the pecan- caramel and it was really good!

We went a bit crazy!


Garrett Popcorn

625 N Michigan Ave
+1 312-944-2630

Girl & the Goat – Chicago

Girl & the Goat, the culinary brainchild of Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard, has been Chicago’s IT restaurant since it opened 3 years ago.  The restaurant is one of the toughest to get a reservation and is fully booked months in advance.

Since this was a spur of a moment trip, I didn’t even try reserving.  The concierge suggested that I try for a walk-in table at 4:30pm on a weekday.. and maybe I’ll get a table within an hour.  So that was my plan……. until… my fingers got itchy and decided to see if there were any cancellations on Opentable.  AND THERE WAS! 7:15pm for 4 people on the next day (our last night in Chicago).   Seriously.. this was just MEANT TO BE!  The next availability was 7 weeks later for a 9:30 pm slot.

 So we headed to West Loop again.. It’s like 2 blocks away from The Publican on West Randolph.. which is THE restaurant street.  Located across the street is Little Goat Diner, which Stephanie Izard opened late last year.

The restaurant, lounge and bar were dimly lit and loud.. and totally emitted the IT vibe.  Instead of sitting at the long communal tables rubbing limbs with the adjacent diner and shouting to get heard, we had our own 4 person table by the windows.  This is yet another sign to prove that that reservation was meant for me!

 The Girl and the Goat.. cartoonized..

 Goat everywhere!

 Cool thing about the menu is, it’s split into 3 sections: vegetable, fish and meat.  It’s a small plate sharing concept.. so we decide to get 3 dishes per category.

roasted beets (green beans . white anchovy . avocado creme fraiche . bread crumb).….the beets tasted really sweet.. couldn’t taste the avocado though…

ham frites (smoke tomato aioli, cheddar beer sauce)…love this! .next time I fry frozen-fries at home, I’m gonna add bacon bits…

chickpea fritters (caponata . mozzarella . tomatillo aioli)….interesting.. the chickpeas are mashed and fried.. the texture reminded me of fried tofu…

 grilled baby octopus (guanciale . favas . radish pods . pistachios . lemon vinaigrette)….it tasted like  Asian-style cooking..

 wood oven roasted pig face (sunny side egg, tamarind, cilantro, red wine-maple, potato stix)…… one of the famous dishes… no, it’s not the entire face roasted… the name is misleading.. but just some meat from the face.. the meat was tender.. and the crispy potato sticks gives it an interesting texture…

pan fried shishito peppers  (parmesan . sesame . miso)… another famous dish.. some peppers were spicy!  couldn’t really taste the sesame/miso…

escargot ravioli  (bacon . tamarind-miso sauce)…. another famous dish.. but the flavour of this dish isn’t strong enough… first time having escargot wrapped in pasta!

sauteed green beans (fish sauce vinaigrette . cashews)… another dish that tasted Asian…

crisp braised pork shank (nectarine kimchee, buttermilk dressing, naan)… the meat could be more tender… I don’t eat kimchee.. but this was an exception… loved the fruitiness!

As you can see from the description of each dish, the food here has a very strong Asian inspiration…which probably is why the food is good. However, I don’t think it’s worth the 5 months advance reservations…..


Girl & the Goat

809 W Randolph St

Chicago, IL 60607, United States

+1 312-492-6262

Yolk – Chicago

My BFF went to Chicago last year and when I asked her for food recommendations, she suggested Yolk.  Yolk is voted the #1 for breakfast in Chicago and is known for their big portions.

I love the name and the related yellow motif seen throughout the restaurant.  So bright and happy!

We ordered the combo (eggs, sausage, bacon  and a choice of either pancakes, waffles, french toasts or crepes).

Out of the pancakes, french toast and waffles, the waffles were the better choice cause it was extremely light and fluffy.

We also ordered the “fresh squeezed orange juice”  and strawberry-orange juice.  Since we sat near the kitchen, we saw that the orange juice isn’t “fresh squeezed” and it didn’t taste like it either.

Anyhoo.. the price is great.. $8.49 for the combo!



different locations in Chicago but we went to the one near Navy Pier:

355 E Ohio St

+1 312-822-9655

The Purple Pig – Chicago

The Purple Pig is one of the most hyped and highly rated restaurants in Chicago.

The location is hard to beat.. right on the Magnificent Mile! They don’t take reservations and lineups are usually 2 hours during peak dining hours… so we went there for a late lunch at 3pm… and no lineup!

The restaurant is a gastropub that specializes in cheese, swine and wine.. We were seated at the communal table and we got real close to the adjacent diners.  Mom got nearly whacked in the face many times!

Pork Fried Almonds with Rosemary & Garlic… nothing special.. tasted like regular almonds but with rosemary and garlic…


Deviled Egg with Arugula & Capers

a close up.. this is made by draining out the yolk, mixing it with cheese, and stuffing it back into the egg… it’s a pretty interesting concept.. but doesn’t taste spectacular…

Milk Braised Pork Shoulder with Mashed Potatoes…the meat was tender but it was EXTREMELY SALTY…even when paired with the mashed potatoes

Chicken Thigh Kebabs, Fried Smashed Potatoes & Tzatziki.. nothing special.. the chicken skin was slightly burned…

The Purple Pig is seriously over hyped.. there’s not a single dish that is outstanding…


The Purple Pig

500 N Michigan Ave  Chicago, IL 60611, United States
+1 312-464-1744