Posts Tagged ‘lunch’

D.C. “Fete Select TV” Crenshaw, NBC Chhicago Street Team

Most great ideas are inspired by personal experiences or passions.  In the restaurant/food  industry,  many concepts emerge from the love of a particular ethnic food, a visit to another part of the world,  or a need that has yet to be addressed.  Bottom line is that we create based on our own motivations, successes or challenges.  Being known as the “fat kid” growing up was challenge for Matt Matros, but helped to motivate him to shed 60 pounds eight years ago.  His vision after dropping the poundage was to help people everywhere live the healthy lifestyle that they want to live.  His brainchild?  “Protein Bar”, a new food venue downtown Chicago where folks can quickly get a meal with essential proteins needed to live a healthy active lifestyle.

Protein Bar provides quick and healthy items high in protein and fiber, but low in sugar.

Protein Bar provides quick and healthy items high in protein and fiber, but low in sugar.

“Protein Bar” has signature protein drinks, signature whole grain bowls and a plethora of boosts too choose from along with fresh made wraps, soups and salads.  There is also an option to build your own drink or bowl if you’re not feeling any of the signature options, but a must try signature protein drink is the “Wrigley Peeled”, consisting of chocolate protein, a choice of milk, all natural peanut butter and banana.  “Protein Bar” uses either whey, soy, or egg as a protein and has four different types of milk.  Some of their boosts include an “Anti-Oxidant Blend”, “Fat Burner Blend”, “Hangover Blend”, and “Libido Blend”.  Gotta try the “Libido Blend”!  Their whole grain bowl options are steel-cut oatmeal, quinoa, power granola, or Kashi Go-Lean Crunch.  Try the “Crackberry” bowl if you like Acai berries mixed with vanilla protein, yogurt, power granola and a fresh banana.  All items are high in protein and fiber and low in sugar.  The “Chipotle Roast Beef with Guacamole” highlights their wrap selections.

“Protein Bar” provides nutritional facts about all of their menu items, which is very helpful for the health conscious individual.  The menu explains the differences between proteins and compares the nutritional differences between their signature items and similar selections found at Jamba Juice, Starbucks, Duncan Donuts and Chipotle.  Overall, “Protein Bar” is a new favorite of yours truly, another former “fat kid”, and will be a frequent stop on my protein tour.

“Protein Bar” is located at 235 South Franklin Street.  For more information log onto www.proteinbarchicago.com.  Check out www.efete.net for more restaurant reviews and an inside look at Chicago’s newest restaurants via Fete Select TV.

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Lindsay_small_2Lindsay Saewitz, NBC Chicago Street Team

Five Guys at Clark and Fullerton opened to the public this past Monday, July 27th and it wasn’t long before the crowds were wrapped around stacks of peanut bags waiting to get their first taste of this East Coast classic.

Don't be fooled by two patties - this is just The Hamburger

Don't be fooled by two patties - this is just The Hamburger

The first thing that Five Guys newcomers should know is that the “Hamburger” is actually a double burger and the “Little Hamburger” is actually a regular-sized hamburger, not a slider. Also, you can add toppings at no additional cost, so you might as well go all out! The order process is a little frantic so it’s best to know what you want before you get up to the cash register.

While you wait for your food, you can sit back and relax with a basket of free peanuts and watch the cooks grilling your food fresh or the Lincoln Park Scene- your choice. The burgers come wrapped in foil and the fresh-cut fries- choose regular or Cajun- come stuffed in a Styrofoam cup overflowing into a paper bag. It’s glorious. The fries were pretty great

Fresh-cut Fries

Fresh-cut Fries

although some thought they were way too salty. The burgers were greasy and delicious, as expected.

The best part about Five Guys is that it’s open ’til 2am on the weekends, and it’s one large space ready and waiting for a party. No other late night restaurant comes to mind where you can get a giant burger and are free to frolic instead of being confined to a particular table or stuffed into a closet-sized space. Five Guys just might be the after-party that Lincoln Park’s been waiting for.

Still hungry after 2? Cross the street to Sarks and get your Loretta nightcap.


Crowd at Five Guys

Five Guys
2368 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614

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Lindsay_small_2Lindsay Saewitz, NBC Chicago Street Team

Hey everyone! I’m SO excited to be part of the NBC Chicago Street Team! I’ll be writing about a few of my favorite things — bars, food, and maybe a snippet of reality TV. Today let’s get started with some food!

Since the 1950s, North Shore high schoolers have flocked to this Evanston hot spot, half for the Lorettas and half for the scene. With this winning combination, it makes perfect sense that the new Sarkis location, named Sarks in the Park, is located in the heart of Lincoln Park at the corner of Clark and Fullerton (in the former Sinbad’s spot).

Owners Josh Alomia and Danny Gallagher open Sarkis in Lincoln Park

Owners Josh Alomia and Danny Gallagher open Sarkis in Lincoln Park

The new Sarks, franchised by GBS and New Trier graduates Danny Gallagher and Josh Alomia, was scheduled to open yesterday but had to push back the opening until Saturday, July 18th. If you were one of the loyal Sarks followers who awaited the opening for weeks, you probably snagged a few free sandwich cards. If you happen to be walking by this week you might snag some as well!

This breakfast-all-day spot is best known for the “Loretta” sandwich, made of grilled french bread, white brick cheese, your choice of bacon, ham, turkey, or the spiced sausage coined the “Disaster”, plus all the fixins- mayo, green pepper, onion, tomato, and maybe some hot sauce if you’re in the mood for something spicy.

If you’re worried about your calorie count, this Sarks location will be offering a lower-fat Loretta made with wheat bread, low-fat cheese, and turkey. Still probably not the healthiest choice, but might save you an extra few minutes of cardio. Sarks also offers more traditional breakfast items like omelets, french toast, and pancakes.

With a hot location, large patio, outdoor speakers bumping, and late night hours (open ’til midnight on the weekends and possibly 4 am in the future), this new addition to the neighborhood is sure to satisfy both your party scene and food cravings. Prepare for a wait, but according to Alomia it will be well worth it after you try the “best breakfast in the world.”

Sarks in the Park
444 W. Fullerton Parkway at Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
Opening Satur
day, July 18th

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D.C. “Fete Select TV” Crenshaw, NBC5 Street Team

Longevity in any industry is rare nowadays, but especially within the restaurant industry.  A combination of great food, service, location and price is what every restaurant owner desires, in order to make their venue last.  Chicago restaurant veteran Jimmy Alexander has been doing it for years, and now has another winner with his new restaurant Powerhouse.Elizabeth Taylor and Conrad "Nicky" Hilton flew in Alexander's dressing for their wedding recpetion in 1950.

Built in a historic landmark in Chicago’s Fulton River District, Powerhouse gets its name from the Western Railway power plant.  The main dining room vibe reminds me where powerful business meetings take place, but the separate bar area is much more casual and contemporary.  The menu, by Executive Chef Jeff Mauro, is packed with an array of traditional American dishes with a powerful twist.  One of my favorites was the Tartare of Hawaiian Ono, an appetizer item.  The Lemon Risotto and Wild Boar Rack and Loin were also very tasty and enjoyable.  One of the highlights of the menu was the famous Alexander salad dressing on their Romaine Hearts salad.  

Mr. Alexander explained that the salad dressing has been on the menu at all of his restaurants since the 1950’s.  In-fact, Conrad “Nicky” Hilton enjoyed the dressing so much, that he had it shipped to his 1950 wedding with Elizabeth Taylor, for their dinner reception.  Now that’s a history lesson for you.  The desserts are plentiful with a selection of cheescake, cake and sorbet, but the winner hands down were the Sweet Potato Doughnuts!  Being a doughnut connoisseur, I have to say that these were the best doughnuts that I’ve ever had.  Period!  Gotta try the doughnuts folks.

Powerhouse is located at 215 Clinton Street between Randolph and Fulton.  It’s open for lunch and dinner and their casual bar is a great place to watch the game.  You can check out their web site at www.powerhouserestaurant.com or call (312) 928-0800 for reservations.  As always, check out Fete Select TV for an inside look at the newest and best restaurants in the city.

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Megan Bowers, NBC5 Street Team

In an effort to further my big-city experience, I decided to check out the Gold Coast neighborhood, where the nightlife is rich and the men are richer — and older. The area is jam-packed with people, fancy cars and Fendi handbags.

All of my disclosed jealousy made me hungry, so me and a couple fellow street teamers “jumped” over to Hugo’s Frog Bar. While this place is usually “hopping” (OK, I’ll stop with the frog analogies) when the sun sets on Rush Street, it is now open for lunch!

We sat at an outside table (the sea captain digs inside isn’t really my scene), and it was a prime people-watching location. Granted, one should focus on their food during mealtime, but this neighborhood has such a unique crowd that you just can’t help yourself.

Ever wonder why it’s called a “frog” bar? Apparently, “Frog” was the nickname Hugo Ralli (one of the owners) called his grandfather, General Bruce Hay of Her Majesty’s Imperial Forces, which explains the ship-like decor.

For starters, we had the crabmeat avocado. It was like a small crabmeat casserole topped with avocado slices. While I’m no professional food critic, I thought it was delicious. You can eat it alone or have it as dip with the great assortment of complimentary bread. However, I must warn you, although the serving looks small, it will certainly fill you up.

We all ordered different things, from the seared halibut to the garbage salad. There were no complaints among us and the service was magnifique! I went for the lobster roll/sandwich/huge mouthful of seafood. Even though I struggled to get a handle on it at first, it was completely worth it.

I definitely recommend this place. The lunch menu is reasonably priced, considering the good selection of seafood and the food is great. I’ll have to check this place out for dinner when night falls, but until then, you can find me people-watching from my intern desk. Until next time!

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