Arrived as scheduled to O'hare at 5pm and within 30 minutes we were on the steps of our building on 30 E Huron in the heart of River North. I decided to rent a condo from www.VRBO.com and what a smart move that was! We were extremely pleased with our location and accommodations. For the same price as a standard hotel room, we had a nice living room, kitchen with granite countertops, cherry cabinets and stainless appliances. Wonderful views of the city from every room and a HUGE wall of closets to boot! We were within walking distance to everything the city has to offer. And if we couldn't get there by foot, the CTA's were just about on every other corner.
The weather was extremely nice, 70's during the day and 50's in the evening and turns out unseasonably warm for this time of year which we were just thrilled with!
We headed to our dinner destination for the night, Osterio Vi Rio, Italian of course! We were within walking distance so we took advantage of the beautiful weather and scenery. We did have a short wait on arriving so we sat at the bar and ordered a glass of wine. The bartender was extremely pleasant and being a native Chicagoan I immediately asked for his recommendations for great jazz and blues clubs. He reiterated the Frommer's Guide suggestions so this just sealed the guide book's fate now as my best friend!
We were seated at a generous sized table with a nice view of the restaurant which had great ambience- true Italian flavor architecture- dark wood beams, curved??, light stone walls, dark but well appointed lighting and music playing in the background of muffled chatter and laughter.
Our waiter was the epitome of an Italian waiter, unfortunately I think they are becoming an extinct breed. He was very pleasant and coy all at the same time. He suggested the prefix menu as this is what they are known for. As also stated in my Frommer's Guide! Ted ordered the pork and white beans as his main course and I opted for the fish. They begin with small dishes and if at anytime you would like more, you just ask. We started with fresh bread and oil for dipping. Then a wonderful salad unlike any other we had either had. Next was grilled onions and being of southern heritage I never tasted any better onion than this! We had several other dishes, but Ted would request more onions. Finally our meal, Ted's pork dinner was served in a small black pot very similar to a jambalaya pot we are all too familar with. It was tender and well seasoned and the beans were cooked to perfection. This was truly their specialty. Being in Chicago I had to have cheescake and this was one of the best we both had ever had.