First of all this is a milestone post for me! It is my 100th blog post since the blog’s inception in January. I’ve enjoyed every minute of this creative outlet of mine. I appreciate your visits and comments.
A Visit to Eataly in Chicago
This past weekend I went to Chicago for a great blog workshop (Go Blog Social) and also went to spend some quality time with my niece Jenna. She suggested we go to Eataly. Have you heard of it? I went to the one in NYC when it first opened and it was so crowded I couldn’t enjoy it. I was thrilled to be able to wander through each aisle in Chicago and take it all in.
What is Eataly? It’s a foodie hotspot and the brainchild of Oscar Farinetti, Famous TV Food Chefs Lidia Bastianich and Mario Batali, Joe Bastianich and brothers Adam and Alex Saper.
Eataly is a mixture of a high-end Italian grocer, wine shop and many small bistros. It’s a collection of a butcher shop, a cheese haven and pastry shop. You can eat and drink your way through the two-story building. If you so desire, you can even take a class.
There are 27 Eataly locations globally. Two locations are in the U.S., Eataly New York and Eataly Chicago. They are also in Italy, Japan, Turkey and Dubai. For additional information on these locations, see Eataly Global.
I grew up in the grocery business. My parents owned a grocery store and it’s in my blood. I love visiting other stores, especially specialty stores such as this. Come along and take the tour with me.
Olive Oil Tastings
There is a huge variety of extra virgin olive oil and they also offer tastings. I love dipping fresh bread in olive oil and its amazing how many different flavors there are. I always make my own salad dressing and its fun to experiment with different oils.
Even though there is a large variety, it is all extra virgin olive oil. It is only to be used in finishing off a recipe, in salad dressings and to use at the end of your cooking process. Extra virgin olive oil is not to be used for sauteing at high temperatures. You need an oil that is meant for a high smoke point.
Although my last name is of Italian heritage, it is my married name. However, as much as I love pasta you would think I was Italian by birth. You can not only find any shape of dried pasta but also freshly prepared pastas such as ravioli, tortellini, etc. I could have bought one of each package!
There isn’t a vegetable or fruit that I don’t like or won’t try. I would love to have a produce department like this near my home. Everything is fresh and so inviting.
I have never seen raisins on the vine! Have you?
Eataly Cheese Department
I. Love. Cheese! Need I say more? Look at this variety! It was especially fun to watch the fresh mozzarella being made into a ball.
Cheese is the easiest appetizer. I bought some aged Parmesan Reggiano and honey to drizzle over it. Delish!
(Note to travelers … if you bring home cheese in your suitcase, it will leave a strong cheese smell on your clothes! Be prepared to wash everything when you get home! It is worth it though!)
Eataly Meat Cases
At these prices this is not your every day meat case, but it is where I would head if I was hosting my supper club or a dinner party. Love the green garnishing in the case. It makes the raw meat look more appetizing.
Eataly Cured Meats
This is the one department that I truly felt like I was in Italy. They had every kind of Italian cured meat.
If you have a sweet tooth, look no further. I am sure you could find a dessert to match your craving in these beautiful cases.
I first fell in love with Nutella in Paris. They had street carts that served Nutella on crepes. Oh my! A slice of heaven! Eataly also has a Nutella station. Do you love this hazelnut spread as much as me?
You don’t have to love to cook to love Eataly. They have bistros throughout the second floor. You can sit at a bar and sip wine or find a table to eat their delicious food. Walking around will get your appetite going. The toughest part is deciding which bistro to eat at!
What a fun experience! Have you been to Eataly in Chicago or NYC? How about one of the ones overseas?