hi there!

I’m Mari.
On Marivelous Me! you’ll find recipes, food gifts, food I’ve traveled for and food solutions. Poke around, maybe you’ll find inspiration for something you’re working on. Enjoy! 


Chicago go GO!

Some people travel to visit museums, historical sites, and shop. Me, I travel to visit restaurants, gourmet food stores and shop - at local supermarkets.

For years now, I've wanted to go to Charlie Trotter's. It's been open for almost 25 years and on August 31st, it's closing for good. When I heard about this six months ago, I knew I needed to go. I wasn't going to miss eating at this iconic restaurant (I never got to go to el Bulli - whaaa).

Unlike most restaurants, Charlie Trotter's accepts reservations three months in advance. So, I set my alarm for 7:00AM on May 18th to pounce on OpenTable. Mr. Mari woke me up, like he normally does at 6:50AM. And after a few minutes of grogginess, my alarm went off, my brain defogged and with a hand extended, I sat bolt upright exclaiming, "Phone!". Unlock phone. Open OpenTable app. Type in Charlie Trotter's. Date: Aug 17th. And? And??? Score!!! I got a reservation. With that accomplished, I relaxed. Obviously there are other notable restaurants in Chicago (Alinea, Schwa, Avec, etc.) but I wanted Charlie Trotter's to be the highlight of my trip, my main (expensive) meal.

I'm leaving this morning, and I'm very excited. Chicago's a great food town and based on all the recommendations for breakfasts, snacks, lunches, dinners, and cocktails I've received, I could easily be eating my way across town for a solid month. Unfortunately, I'm only going for one weekend. A couple friends laughed at my itinerary. They said, "What are you doing in-between meals?" I said with a completely straight face, "Walking to the next place." Here's my map of food stops I'll be trying to hit, organized by day and order of attack. Wish me, my feet and my stomach good luck and bon appétit.

If you can figure out the images, you must either live in Chicago or be just as obsessed with food as me. Wanna be friends? Bonus points if you can guess the only two non-food stops before reading the answers.
(Images from top left to right: The Aviary, Portillo's, Glazed and Infused, The Violet Hour, Do-Rite Donuts and Coffee, Millennium Park Cloud Gate sculpture, Chicago City Cruises, XOCO, The Purple Pig, Mindy's Hot Chocolate, Charlie Trotter's, Girl & the Goat, Jam Restaurant)

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