December 22, 2009

American Icon: Club Lago


Photo via Club Lago

I think one of the things I miss most about Chicago is Club Lago. Club Lago is this great Italian restaurant/bar that has been passed down three generations to brothers GianCarlo and Guido Nardini. I say Italian, but I mean American. Nothing is more American than two Italian brothers running a family restaurant in the heart of Chicago.

There are so many things that make Club Lago great...

...the atmosphere, the hearty food, the layout, the vintage interior, Guido, GianCarlo, the staff…
...but what really does it for me is walking through the front door…everyone always remembers me and knows what I order. Even after a two years! Yes…that emotional connection. :-)

BTW, I always order the Executive Salad. Always…except one New Year’s Eve that I spent alone…I moved up the food chain and ordered their steak. It was gynormous! I barely finished it…but it waaaasss tasty!

So over this holiday season, on my way back to Kalamazoo, I made sure to rekindle some old friendships. Among the several good friends that I connected with, were some of my old buddies from Bagby, VSA, and Meta4 Design. Of course, we all had to go to Club Lago…

Jim Markich and Fred Biliter are true design veterans in every sense of the word. I miss them a lot. They have offered me plenty of guidance and counsel over the years from a bar stool at Club Lago. Imagine a scene from Mad Men...but more intense. Those days are over now, but Club Lago is still there….and so are the friendships.

How lucky I have been to be able experience such a great part of Americana. Guido and GianCarlo have kids now…I can only imagine what it will be 30 years from now. The same…I hope. :-)


GianCarlo and staff...


GianCarlo...hugs for all...


The calamari is always great...


Fred & Jim


Fred Biliter


Jim Markich


The three of us...

1 Comments:

Blogger ogie said...

really missed you guys!

December 27, 2009  

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