All this week, we’re covering the EXPO fair and surrounding events in Chicago. To give you an insider look at the city, we’re talking to a few exceptional Chicagoans who are sharing their favorite spots to dine, drink, play, and see art. Up first, we have collectors Rich and Beth Heller.
WHERE TO EAT AND SIP:
Chicago has one of the best dining scenes in the country. The West Loop is packed with terrific places to drink, like Aviary and eat, including Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz’s Momotaro (amazing sushi) and Duck Duck Goat (don’t miss the beef slap noodles). There is also RJ Melman’s newest creation Aba (if it’s a nice day try and get a spot on their rooftop deck). In River North, try not to miss the iconic Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse, where you can enjoy fantastic prime steaks and get to explore real Chicago history (Al Capone’s enforcer Frank Nitti lived in the building for many years and the vault in the basement showcases his gangster-era items).
WHERE TO SEE ART:
Chicago’s art scene is bustling with amazing public art, fabulous galleries and world class museums. Stop by the Museum of Contemporary Art for their cutting-edge exhibitions and don’t miss the Edlis and Neeson collection in the modern wing of the Art Institute of Chicago. Make time to head down to the South Shore to see the Stony Island Arts Bank, where artist Theaster Gates turned a long-vacant bank into a cultural institution. Some of our favorite galleries are the Richard Gray Gallery, Patron Gallery, Rhona Hoffman Gallery, moniquemeloche, Andrew Rafacz Gallery, and Corbett vs. Dempsey.
WHERE TO HAVE FUN AND RELAX:
With major sculptural works by Calder, Dubuffet, and Picasso, among others, a stroll of downtown public art is a great way to spend time. We also enjoy a walk around nearby Millennium Park, where you will find Anish Kapoor’s Cloud Gate (aka “The Bean”) and Jaume Plensa’s Crown Fountain, which consists of two large glass towers with faces of Chicagoans at each end of a shallow reflecting pool. If it’s warm, our kids like to play in the water. As for sports, we love Wrigley Field, which was built in 1914 and is one of the oldest and best ballparks in the country, where we enjoy watching the Chicago Cubs play.