I am taking full advantage of actually doing things in the city instead of talking about doing things and then wake up and it’s October 1. 

If you live near Chicago, it’s worth a trip to the Riverwalk.  It’s about a mile or more long, and so many places to taste nibbles, sip on cocktails and it’s probably the best people watching place in the city.

My friend Gina’s brother is the chef at The Northman, and after months of construction, they were open for business!

The Northman is on the Riverwalk – between Michigan Avenue and Columbus – almost to the very end of the walk.  Keep going and you can walk all the way to Navy Pier!

Gina’s brother’s name is Bubba – a nickname pretty much given to him at birth because he was 11 pounds and 24 inches long at birth – I think that’s the tallest baby I’d ever heard of – almost like giving birth to a two month old!

He just kept bringing us plate after plate and it was perfect.  I had a bite here, a nibble there, but I was able to try everything.  Side note/fun fact:  you can’t have any gas grills or flame on the riverwalk, so restaurants can only utilize ovens and warmers.

First up was a delicious hummus with chickpea salad, evoo, pita points and olives.

That right there was my favorite bite of the whole night – sous vide pork belly with apple slaw, cider Q sauce, pickle and onion – yes I said onion!  I didn’t taste it.  But what was interesting is that Chef Bubba said that he made the cider slaw by reducing some of their hard apple cider – I can’t wait to try this at home.

Doner sausage with tzatiki, tomato, and cucumber wrapped in a pita – so good!

This was one sandwich I didn’t try, but everyone gave it rave reviews – their signature chicken salad with celery, scallion, pickle, herbs and crema.

I got to meet a couple new friends too!  This is Lora, who loves my skinny pizza dough – you can find her on Instagram at: loralovesittoo

This is Gina and her husband Mark.  Gina used to work for Sur La Table, and she does awesome cooking stories on Instagram, you can find her at: thetastetress

I also met Laura: laurakaufmann_ww and my Instagram daughter Christina (christinafantozzi)  came for the last half hour I was there.  Promise our meet up will be longer next time Christina!

It was such a fun night.  I love meeting new people, trying new food and enjoying Chicago.

When my husband was sick I was homebound for many years, so I guess I am just making up for lost time?!

Today is my Friday!  I am going on my annual Beef Trip with Certified Angus Beef – it’s always a whirlwind weekend, but it’s all about beef so I am confident I will have fun.

Make it a great day!