Where to Eat in Chicago

As a Chicago native (now living in California for many years) I often get asked about restaurants and food in Chicago. I’ve been gone a long time but when we go back these are some of the places and restaurants we think about. I don’t know how much time you will have there but I’m going to give you the places that people go to and talk about that know Chicago food (I’m sure I’m missing a few so am open to more current suggestions too :-)).

Look for RICOBENE’S PIZZA near downtown on the south side (but don’t buy pizza; buy one “BREADED STEAK SANDWICH” to split). It is full of delicious cheese and is a lot of food for a normal human being and as long as you’re comfortable to share is plenty for two. Don’t go there on a first date there; it is messy. http://www.ricobenespizza.com/ Really good; You should love this.

If you want to have dinner and a cool Chicago experience go to TUFANO’S VERNON PARK TAP in the old Italian neighborhood of Taylor Street. It’s an old Italian restaurant and is really authentic Italian food. Warning: They don’t take credit cards (at least they didn’t used to). Order anything Italian. It’s all good. https://sites.google.com/site/tufanosrestaurant/

After either of these two places, you will be in the TAYLOR STREET AREA (after dinner and if it is summer) go out right nearby for an ITALIAN ICE AT MARIOS: http://www.eatmarios.com/ . It is very close to Tufano’s or Ricobene’s – You can almost walk there from Tufano’s but it might be better to do a cab or Uber (it’s very close). You’ll love that Italian ice. I crave it. – MARIO’S ITALIAN ICE – 1068 W Taylor St, Chicago, IL 60607 – The neighborhood is an old Italian neighborhood and is good but don’t stray too far out of that neighborhood walking.

For lunch, find either a PORTILLO’S OR AL’S BEEF – (and don’t buy a hot dog). http://www.alsbeef.com/locations.html or http://www.portillos.com/locations/ – Order a “WET BEEF” and fries. This is a specialty that you can pretty much only find in Chicago. There are Portillo’s and Al’s all around Chicago and the suburbs. Italian beef is a real Chicago specialty. There is a Portillo’s in Buena Park, CA though and me and my wife go there often.

Try Giordano’s for pizza. https://www.giordanos.com/locations/all-locations/ – It’s a chain but pretty good for Chicago pizza. Other good pizza places downtown are Uno’s and/or Due’s Pizzeria’s – They’re both good. You can try their DEEP DISH PIZZA. It’s really good but usually gives me heartburn because I eat too much.

About hot dogs… Almost anywhere you see a little hot dog stand will usually be good but some that we especially like are:

  • In Cicero: HENRY’S HOT DOGS on Ogden Avenue
  • On the north side of Chicago: I remember going to JIMMY’S HOT DOGS on Grand and Pulaski as a kid. 4000 W Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60651. They were good. Be careful of the neighborhood though.
  • On the south side of Chicago: I remember a few hot dog stands named “NICKY’S”. I used to love them.
  • Some Suburbs: In River Grove: A lot of people talk about GENE & JUDE’S. I haven’t been there but hear it is good.

Before you leave Chicago, stop somewhere to have a GYRO SANDWICH. There are stands everywhere in Chicago. They’re almost always good and they serve them with a delicious white sauce. Buy the ones that are fresh sliced off the vertical rotisserie. Those are the best and are plentiful in Chicago. These are a favorite for me and a little more difficult to find in California.

Last!  I’ve been gone a long time and if you know that I’ve missed something, please let me know.  I’m always interested in where to eat when I come back to Chicago.

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Revenge on the Telecom Robot

I have an old phone number that I like and that I’ve used for almost 18 years.  I have robots calling me every day.  I’m sure that the “telemarketers” (aka spammers) unleashing these robots on the public won’t like this but it is one of the funniest things I’ve seen in a while.

It uses advanced technology that, I promise you, you have already likely been a victim of; artificial intelligence; basically a robot that sounds so human that it fools many, maybe most humans. I’ve had several “conversations” with these robots already and only realized they were robots after talking to them for a while.

Now, a group called the Jolly Roger Telephone Company has a robot that answers your phone and wastes the telemarketer’s time.  If I’m truthful, I don’t mind real people calling me.  I usually don’t give them much time any more so I sort of feel sorry for this guy (the caller), but not too much.  I get a lot of calls every day and the worst of them are the robots.  Below is at least a small taste of  sweet revenge after years of abuse by the telemarketing industry.  Remember the person being called is a robot…


The Jolly Roger Phone Company just ran a Kickstarter campaign and did not reach their goal so they weren’t funded. If I’m honest, I really don’t care to see a war on human telemarketers. I just hope I’ll be forgiven for this moment of basking in the funniness of it.
One last note: This robot sounds like me! I really heard myself in that robots voice.

Read more… | Source:Kickstarter | Date posted: 3/3/2016

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No Daddy – No Godaddy Superbowl Ad This Year.

Adage Magazine and other media outlets have reported that Godaddy is sitting out this year’s Superbowl. They’ve been advertising on it since 2005 so it’s a disappointment to the domain name industry. We have a lot to thank them for. They put domain names on the map for the general public. I can remember having many conversations with people about “what is a domain name” – not any more.
Godaddy Ad

I suspect that having likely spent millions on portfolios and other investments, they feel that spending another million on a Super Bowl ad isn’t necessary this year. What I’d like to see happen however and what I think would be helpful to them and to others in the industry is an ad campaign that demonstrates the value of domain names to the business world. I don’t think the average domain name buyer still understands how much a great domain name can help to reduce their PPC costs and to increase the rates of return to their ad spends (because great domain names are more memorable).

Superbowlcommercials.tv reported that Phil Bienert, GoDaddy’s chief marketing officer, said: “Now we are at the point where we don’t need to grow brand awareness domestically any more. A platform like the Super Bowl is really not something that’s necessary for us.”  Fortune Magazine reported that a 30-second Super Bowl ad is selling for as much as $5 million this coming year, about 11% higher than last year. Some 114.4 million people on average tuned into the 2015 Super Bowl .

Read the story… | Source: Superbowlcommercials.tv | Date posted: 12/22/2015

Read More Here… | Source: Adage.com | Date posted: 12/22/2015



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Google Starts Holding Company and Uses ABC.XYZ

Huge Win for the New Generic Top Level Domain, .xyz


Google made a big announcement today that will certainly benefit the world of new generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs). They have started a new holding company called “Alphabet” and are hosting it at ABC.xyz. The new .xyz domain name was started by Daniel Negari, a Beverly Hills domain name entrepreneur (He does a lot of other stuff too). Daniel’s marketing of the new .xyz domain name has had its critics but overall, has been ingenious. He has done several amazing things:

– leveraged contacts from his large affiliate business (likely including Google)
– positioned .xyz to be thought of as the largest new gTLD in the space (This was accomplished mostly through a controversial special arrangement with Web.com but certainly helped to accomplish its purpose
– used his existing .com domain (xyz.com) to allow .xyz registrants to be secure that their users wouldn’t be redirected accidentally to .com domains. To see what I mean, type in abc.xyz.com. You’ll see that it still goes to the abc.xyz domain name. Very few new gTLD applicants thought of this and it is very smart.
– leveraged the news media to get as much publicity as possible for his new gTLD.
– positioned .xyz as the domain name for millennials as in generation xzy.

There are a few other things they have done very well to have taken a string that many considered not all that great to become one of the most successful new gTLDs in the world. Getting Google on board with ABC.XYZ is a huge win.

Whatever you think of the new domain ending, .xyz, anyone could learn a lot about marketing by studying what .xyz is doing to make it a commercial success.

Read the story… | Source: Google

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