Champagne and Opera in Chicago

Meagan and I experienced Chicago’s rivers and name-sake pizza during our first few days in Chi-Town, and were off to the Field Museum next.  We started with an incredible brunch at The Bongo Room, where I had a BLT Eggs Benedict with a basil pesto Hollandaise sauce.  It is one of those restaurants that I will make a point of going to next time I visit since, ya know, I love the city and can’t wait to go back.  It was a beautiful, cloudless day, even if it was really windy.  But what do you expect from the Windy City?

Near the Museum Campus in Chicago.

Museum Day.  We went to the Field Museum, but didn’t have enough time to see even half of the giant museum because we had to get ready for the opera early in the afternoon.  I was a little nervous for the opera because it was Meagan’s first one and, as Richard Gere appropriately says in Pretty Woman, you either love opera or you hate it.  (And let’s be honest, I was worried she would hate it!)

Cheers to the opera!

There is something about being dressed up and drinking champagne that is so fitting. With that in mind, we chose the Paris Club for dinner, a French small plates restaurant with incredible desserts.  (Think Pistachio Pot de Creme custard and dark chocolate crepe mouse cake!)

At the opera in Chicago.

Chicago Opera.  Then we made our way to the opera house for The Tales of Hoffman.  The story, in my opinion, was lacking structure and focus, but luckily the singers worked wonders with the music and even managed a few laughs from the audience.  My favorite line was, “Did music make me love you…or was it the reverse?” :)  It was enjoyable and funny and most importantly reminded me just how much I love opera.  I love the beauty the music and the way it gives me chills when an aria is perfectly performed.  We managed champagne breaks at both intermissions, keeping our fizzy buzzes going strong.

Drinking more champagne at Pops.

Bubbly and More Bubbly.  Wanting to continue our champagne high, we went to the champagne bar, Pops for Champagne, after the opera.  They had 200 different kinds of champagne!  We met some nice gentlemen who offered to share a bottle with us, which quickly turned into three bottles, which later turned into a drink at the nearby Redheaded Piano Bar.  Needless to say after drinking champagne from 6 p.m. until 3 a.m., we were ready to call it a night!

Shopping near Hancock Tower in Chicago.

Hancock Tower.   We spent our last day in Chicago shopping on Michigan Avenue and having wine at the Hancock Tower, one of the tallest buildings in the city with a great view of the shoreline.  The view was pretty, but the actual atmosphere of the lounge at Hancock Tower was less-than-impressive.

Then we wandered around the city, sad that it was already time to go home.  In just four short days, Chicago captivated my curiosity and caused me to fall in love.  I can’t wait to go back!  Meagan and I are already thinking of planning another trip…for after the notoriously bitter winter!  Until then, Chicago, you will be in my heart!

Tags from the story
More from Kelli Nakagama

Cocktails and Conversation at Under Current

Even those of us who didn’t grow up watching the sitcom Cheers...
Read More

Leave a Reply