Idioma / Language: Spanish

Chicago: a city full of gluten-free restaurants

To finish with the story told in First Part and Second Part

On that day I woke up earlier to go to visit the Cloud Gate (the famous Chicago Bean) at Millennium Park. From there, I sent a good morning video to Isabel – a good afternoon for her. At that time there was almost no one in the park and I could admire that impressive sculpture that Anish Kapoor made for AT & T Square in the park. After a little walk enjoying the calm that you can only find in early hours, I took another taxi to go to the exhibition. I was the first to arrive, so I took advantage of that free time to eat the gluten-free cookies I always carry in my briefcase.

It was the second opening day for the Pack Expo and that day was really busy. We did not stop during all day and at lunchtime, the “Shor” restaurant at the Hyatt McCormick was super busy and we didn’t have enough time to wait that long… so, I did not eat! This usually happens at trade shows… besides, in the take-away shops of the venue, there was absolutely nothing gluten free, so I grabbed a couple of gluten free cookies and a strange gluten-free snack that I a colleague from the States bought for me. So nice! After the exhibition, in our other stand, our agent organized a small stand-up cocktail, but there was nothing gluten-free… it was expected because I didn’t tell him.

When I got back to the hotel, I quickly changed my clothes and took a taxi to the ULTA shop, a store that was some miles away from Chicago downtown. I had to find the other brands I had been asked for. Actually, I found them, but they did not have the colors I was looking for… what a pity! On the way to the shop, I had saw another store that seemed to be close to the ULTA, but it was half an hour away by walk haha… so when I arrived it was already closed. At least the walk was good to know other parts than Chicago’s downtown, although there was nothing worth seeing… At dinner time, we went back to Ditka’s, the restaurant at 100 From E Chestnut Street, next to the Tremont Hotel, where we had our accommodation. The fillet mignon from the day before was so good that I ordered the same. Very good!

Click on the image to access the form

The next day was THE ELECTIONS DAY, one of the most important days in US history since, as they said, “whether they would have the first woman President, or a crazy man would occupy that position”… looking at the results, I do not what to think… in addition, that day was also a special day for us, as we had an event with all the operating companies and some customers, to follow the elections life. After having another huge breakfast of eggs with bacon and roasted potatoes, I returned to my room to work until I finished a couple of urgent issues.

That day I left a bit late to the exhibition and, on the way to the venue, the taxi driver told me the pros and cons of each candidate to the presidency… That day was not a regular working day for US citizens… in theory, the third day of the show should have been as crowded as the second, but there were very few people compared to other years. The whole country was looking at something else. To me, it was very strange, because in Spain we usually vote on Sunday instead of doing it on a working day… but hey, they are Americans! That day I could eat another hamburger at the Hyatt McCormick Shor restaurant. The rest of the afternoon was quite slow. Luckily, a couple of important clients came and they told me about their future projects.

After the show, we quickly went back to the hotel to leave our briefcases and rapidly go to the Chicago Sports Museum, where we held the event. There were almost 80 people. We organized a cocktail dinner with canapés, mini-burgers and other delicacies. From Spain, I organized something separate for me but, to my surprise, when I arrived there was nothing prepared, so I called the manager and explained her what happened. I refused to stay without dinner! She came back after 5 minutes with a gluten free menu for me. I could choose whatever I wanted, so I chose a gluten free chicken sandwich with lettuce, tomato and bacon and, another colleague that does not eat dairy products, ordered a burger. The truth is that we had the best dinner. I don’t mean that the food was horrible, but in this type of cocktail dinners, the trays with the best food are emptied very fast and those with the less appealing food stay full all night haha. We did not have to fight for the good stuff!

We spent the rest of the night chatting with our colleagues from other companies and playing the various games that were there, all about sports, of course! Most games were similar to those on the Wii. You stood in front of the screen and the character moved just like you moved. We played triple rounds in basketball, scoring goals in ice hockey and baseball. I another area of the museum, there were basketballs with the hands of different players in the NBA marked, the shoes of another basketball player, etc. It was a very funny night!

The next day, our last day in Chicago, we had a breakfast-meeting with part of the US team, and then we went to the show. We had breakfast at Tempo Cafe, where we used to eat breakfast every day, on the same street as Ditka’s, next to the hotel. After breakfast, we went back to our rooms to pick up our luggage, do the check-out and go to our booth. We stayed there all morning until midday. Then we took an UBER taxi to go to the airport. I did not remember that at Terminal 5 of Chicago airport there are only three restaurants: two Mexicans and one Thai. The last time I was there I went Thai, so that day I went Mexican. They had absolutely no idea what the gluten free food was! Awesome! After explaining it a couple of times, they assured that the nachos with chicken had no gluten, so I took that. Although I was a little unconfident about that dish and their capabilities to serve a gluten free menu, I ate it. Luckily I had a good flight back. During the flight they served me a couple of gluten-free menus. The way back was quite okay, as I slept part of the trip and the rest I was reading, so great.

And this has been my last trip to the United States.

To see the pictures of the trip, click here.

In general, you will find a gluten free menú in almost all restaurants of Chicago. If you are looking for a gluten free pizza, you can go to D’Agostino’s Pizza & Pub, you will find it at:

– 752 Nord Ogden Avenue (606242).

– 1351 wes Addison Street (60657).

BY CLICKING ON THE MAP OF GLUTEN FREE RESTAURANTS YOU FILL SEE ALL RESTAURANTS WE DESCRIBED IN THIS POST LOCATED IN THE MAP OF GLUTEN-FREE PLACES:

AND HERE WE LEAVE THE CELIAC TRAVEL CARD IN ENGLISH:

P.S.: Please keep in mind that in this blog I share my trips, anecdotes and experiences about gluten free travel around the world. It is possible that, in any of my trips, I go to some restaurant not trained by the associations where the risk of being contaminated with gluten exists. I kindly ask you to also take into account that the list of references can change. Please, always double check before eating in the restaurants we recommend. Thank you very much!

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Me llamo Santi y actualmente vivo en la provincia de Barcelona. En 2001, me diagnosticaron de enfermedad celíaca… ¡por fin! Además, soy intolerante a la lactosa, la alergia al pescado me mata, ¡literalmente!, y también algunas frutas... Viajar sin gluten se ha convertido en mi mayor hobby y creé Gluten Free Adventures por esta razón. Desde los 8 años, he viajado y vivido en distintos países… ¡aquí comparto mis experiencias viajando para descubrir restaurantes sin gluten, pastelerías sin gluten y heladerías sin gluten por todo el mundo! ¡Espero que os gusten nuestros viajes sin gluten!