I went to Chicago last weekend for the Ohio State Buckeye vs. Northwestern game with my main man Jonny-boy. We took Friday off work and drove to Chicago to save some money. It was certainly an awesome trip. As soon as we got off the highway exit to go to the hotel, Google Music started playing ‘Hang On Sloopy’! Sign two was when we got to the parking garage, we had the best spot in the house thanks to Wattson!
After checking in to the hotel, we went out for some deep dish pizza. The concierge recommended Lou Malnati’s, which didn’t disappoint.
We asked the waitress for places to go in the city and she recommended Jimmy Green’s next door. Since Jonny-boy shared the same last name, we considered this another great sign.
We watched the Oakland vs. Detroit playoff game. Once that was over, they brought in an awesome D.J. who totally rocked the house (pictured below with Fat Mark). He wasn’t overwhelming and played really fun music. The highlight of the evening was meeting a super drunk girl who said she invented TIVO. It was awesome!
That concluded our Friday night. We ended up cabbing it back to the hotel.
When Saturday came around, we were in desperate need of breakfast. Once we got situated, we asked the concierge for recommended breakfast options. He suggested 11 City Diner. This could not have been a better recommendation.
11 City Diner turned out to be a Jewish diner with an amazing atmosphere and wonderful service. I would go as far to say from this point forward, anytime I go to Chicago, I will always go to 11 City Diner. Similar to going to Minnesota and hitting up The Lion’s Tap.
The food at 11 was perfect. I had ‘The Tom Waits 2am Breakfast 1987″ which was two eggs, two pancakes, two bacon, two sausage, house potatoes and toast for $12.99…. I repeat…. $12.99. Absolutely incredible. We sat at the bar and the people were fantastic. I ended up getting my picture taken with the bartender. I’m already looking forward to going back.
On the way out I stopped at the candy station of the restaurant and bought the concierge a chocolate bar for the amazing recommendation and I bought some Hebrew Bazooka Joe for us. We obviously couldn’t read the comics.
After breakfast we headed back to the hotel and got ready for the game. We took the Red Line to the Purple Line and got off the train when all the OSU fans got off the train. We had tickets to the OSU Alumni Club of Chicago tailgate. We checked out the stadium and then headed to the tailgate. We met the only people in Northwestern gear who explained they had a child in the band.
The rain was crazy and ended up drenching everything in sight. Below is a picture I took of the parking lot on our way out of the tailgate.
We met some great Northwestern fans who invited us to their tailgate (not pictured). We enjoyed their hospitality but eventually needed to head near the stadium to scalp tickets. We ended up buying for $100 each, which was cheaper than retail and stubhub. After we got tickets, we hit up the parking lots near the stadium. The sky turned an incredible redish/purple as the rain left.
We eventually found a good tailgate and met the Northwestern fan Jacob (future surgeon). I immediately started calling him Turk. You can see he wasn’t amused.
Once we got into the stadium, the field was a complete mess (pictured below). I think this played into the flow of the game. It seemed like OSU couldn’t get in a grove until the very end.
Mark and Jonny-Boy at the game.
We sat next to a group of Ohio State fans. I thought this guy looked amazingly like John Salley.
The first picture below is a shot shortly before OSU’s go-ahead touchdown. You can see the Ohio State contingent in the background. This was an away game but I would say there were at least 55% OSU fans in attendance. The second picture is immediately after the game.
After the game we headed to Wrigleyville to celebrate. I couldn’t resist a quick picture in front of the stadium.
When we got to Wrigleyville, it was another sign when we found Mullen’s so we had to go.
We took a cab back to the hotel and drove home the next day. We were absolutely spent when we got back to Columbus, but overall, an amazing trip where the Buckeyes continued their winning streak to a remarkable 18 games!
If you have any great Chicago stories or want to comment on our trip, feel free to drop a note below.