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Bike The Drive – Lake Shore Drive, Chicago

Once a year cyclists of all ages take over Lake Shore Drive for Bike the Drive during Memorial Day weekend. For five hours LSD is closed to cars so riders can enjoy a 30 mile course through Chicago.

 

Shop Local – Milk Handmade in Andersonville, Chicago

The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce recently celebrated their 50th anniversary and they hosted bloggers for a culinary, shopping or medley tour. The tour included tastes, history, discounts and a chance to speak to the owners at each stop. Today I want to show you one of the spots on the medley itinerary: Milk Homemade.

Milk Handmade has independent, handcrafted goods from local designers. Including clothes, bath items, jewelry and more. An absolute must is the horchata scented candle –– fresh cinnamon scent will make your mouth water, home smell delicious and makes a great gift.

Consider shopping local the next time you are looking for something unique for yourself or others.

Milk Homemade Candles

Milk Homemade Candles

Viking Breakfast at Svea – Andersonville, Chicago

Svea Chicago Dining Room

Svea Chicago Dining Room

Svea is a cozy Swedish diner in Andersonville filled with viking helmets, flags, Dalecarlian horse tablecloths and Valkommen signs making everyone feel welcome.

Svea is a neighborhood favorite so don’t be surprised if you have to wait for a seat if you arrive after 9am on the weekend (they do not take reservations). I suggest coming hungry and getting the viking breakfast: Eggs cooked to order, falukrov (Swedish sausage), Swedish fried potatoes (you can substitute sliced tomatoes) and two Swedish pancakes with lingonberry jam. The pancakes are more of a crepe in thinness with a spongy texture. Be sure to order the limpa as your bread choice, it’s a slightly sweet rye bread.

The Swedish potato pancakes are also worth a try as well as the rice pudding with lingonberry jam.
Svea also serves traditional lunch items such as herring salad and Swedish meatball sandwiches. They have a great family atmosphere as well as a diner counter for anyone dining solo.
Notes: No website, Facebook page and cash-only.
Svea Breakfast Spread Chicago

Svea Breakfast Spread Chicago

 

Little Bad Wolf – Andersonville, Chicago

Little Bad Wolf Chicago Mural

Little Bad Wolf is the type of neighborhood bar/restaurant that is a “perfect for” spot. It’s cozy with communal wooden tables yet cool with wolf artwork and teal button tufted back booth –– along with the great vibe, music, food and cocktails make LBW perfect for:

Casual drink at the bar
First/casual date
First meeting place for a drink/bite before going out
Dinner with a couple of friends
Small plates
Late night bite

Have a peek inside:

A thoughtful Continue reading

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Las Olas Café – Miami Beach, FL

Tortilla Sandwich - Las Olas, Miami Beach

Tortilla Sandwich – Las Olas, Miami Beach

Las Olas Café on 6th street in Miami Beach is one of my favorite spots for cheap and delicious Cuban food. This hearty tortilla sandwich is enough for two people and the flaky bread is heaven. Bonus: Great people watching and café con leche. Come prepared to speak Spanish and/or point out what you want.

 

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Bad Wolf Coffee – Get It While You Can

Bad Wolf Coffee Cappuccino

Bad Wolf Coffee Cappuccino

Bad Wolf coffee is a locally owned shop with a menu that changes daily. If you are lucky they will have kouign amann –– an amazingly sweet croissant-like pastry with layers of sugar and butter. Check out my Tastemade videos to see for yourself:

Standing room only makes this a spot where conversing in real life is encouraged instead of staring into a computer screen. Bright colors and artwork cover the walls and morning light give the room a vibrant feel. The coffee is strong and is delivered with some art of its own.

The owner is pulling up stakes to move down south, so stop in and enjoy this unique spot while you can.

Bad Wolf Coffee

Bad Wolf Coffee

Cochon555 – Chicago

Cochon555 is a national culinary competition and Sunday they were in Chicago at Morgan Manufacturing. It was a night full of pork, wine, spirits and great people. Five chefs compete using five hogs to create dishes that ticket holders vote on. The winner from each city meets in Aspen June 20th for the Grand Cochon and bragging rights of the best heritage hog chef in the U.S. Congrats, Chef Nicole Pederson from Found Kitchen!

Check out my video to get an inside look at this ultimate pork extravaganza!

Dose Market – Chicago

Dose Market is one of my favorite markets in Chicago ––they feature a creative mix of local food, clothing, chefs, artists and designers. The market on Sunday was held during the FX Summit in the beautiful Chicago Cultural Center. It’s a fun way to spend your Sunday, meeting up with friends to discover the Chicago vendors Dose put together.

The next Dose is May 10th at the Soho House and is free for all. Go get inspired, eat delicious food and get a gift for Mother’s Day.

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I Spy a Skyline Around the Bend – Lake Michigan

Spring day in Chicago