1800 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60614
Date of Last Visit: Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009
The Victims: Christina, Kent
The Damage: $75 USD each
The Background: I moved to Chicago in July of 1996. My mom came with me to help me find an apartment and we stayed for a few days at the Days Inn Gold Coast…”Gold Coast” making it sound a lot ritzier than it was. Our room was super tiny, and the air conditioner was questionable. Downstairs, the hotel had a restaurant, one of those old-school Chicago ones with lots of formica. We had breakfast there. It was the first place I ever ate in Chicago.
So here it is 13 years later, and I’m back at The Days Inn Gold Coast, although it’s not a Days Inn anymore. It’s been completely renovated.
And it’s also completely empty.
It’s a ghost hotel…totally kitted out like a hotel, but not operating. It’s spooky, almost, standing there in the lobby, looking at the check-in desk and the big chairs. No brochures, no paper, no people. Weird.
Perennial, on the other hand, is hopping. Particularly its outside area. The crowd is upwardly mobile, wearing large sunglasses, and drinking mojitos. Not an inch of formica in sight.
The Food: I’ve read about the chicken lollipops online and people have raved about them. They’re served in a soy reduction with cashews, and “asian” slaw. They’re okay. They’re HUGE actually and look nothing like I imagined. There’s four of them. And they’re SALTY. I eat two and give the rest to Christina and Kent. Always a bad sign when I give my food away.
Next up are sea scallops, wild mushrooms, and short rib cannelloni gratin. The scallops are great. The short rib cannelloni tasts like nothing. And the mushrooms are, again, super salty. It’s just not working for me.
The meal is saved by the lovely dessert. The menu calls it cheesecake, but as you can see, it doesn’t look much like cheesecake now, does it? That’s raspberry custard, cream cheese foam, and graham cracker ice cream. The ice cream is in the center of the foam. I love all the flavours and textures here…really, very very nice.
The Verdict: I wasn’t so keen on the food-food. But the atmosphere of the place was pretty fun and the dessert was great.