We’d like to start a movement. A Chicago park movement, to be exact. In New York it’s all Central Park this, and in San Francisco it’s let’s lounge in Alamo Square and catch a glimpse of Uncle Jesse at the Painted Ladies that. In Chicago it’s ew, Segway tours at Buckingham fountain and spillover Michigan Avenue tourists. And that’s why we are trying to change things.
You’ll be happy to know we’ve appointed Brown Bag Seafood as the official food provider for those visiting Millennium Park due to its location and style (there's nothing official about this). Located on Randolph just east of Michigan, Brown Bag is like a new money glorified fish shack - it has a pretty facade, but isn't quite refined. Brown Bag serves a similar purpose but has more personality than the fast-casual chains, and the food is good albeit not great.
You have a number of either fried or grilled fish options, plus some chicken and veggie alternatives. All proteins come in the form of a sandwich, tacos, salad, or a powerbox with quinoa, so feel free to mix and match as you please. That being said, the name is Brown Bag Seafood Co., and fish is the way to go.
Fill out an order sheet at the island stand before handing it to a cashier who will ring you up. We’ve heard complaints that ordering here is a complicated process, to which we say stay indoors if that's how you feel, because society as a whole is too complicated for you.
There’s enough seating inside to grab a table, booth, or counter spot, but there’s also an excellent patio in front if you’re looking to catch some fresh air and beautiful Michigan Avenue views. Of course, you can also take your food to one of the nicest damn parks in the world across the street. Eat at the top of the nearby rock climbing wall for all we care, but at least take a park stroll before, after, or during your meal.
Don't worry, the Brown Bag x Millennium Park initiative will be in effect all year long - winter ice rinks keep the dream alive. Move over Leslie Knope, there's a new gold standard in the parks and rec department.
Options of a subbie (sandwich), salad, tacos, straight up grilled fish, or a powerbox, which means over a quinoa/wild rice blend and spinach. The only option we don’t love is the tacos. Our preference is sandwich, and if you’re trying to be healthy then salad, straight up, or powerbox works..
Even someone who doesn’t love fish can handle some teriyaki salmon. Solid Teriyaki flavor, which we like to get in a powerbox.
Simple stuff - whitefish and a little lemon. Get it as a sandwich and load up on the sweet thai chile sauce. This is our go-to move.
We generally go for the grilled or blackened stuff, but the fried shrimp isn’t bad. If you’re going fried shrimp you might as well get it in a sandwich or tacos.
A small side of tater tots never hurt anyone. Options of classic, buffalobleu, cheddar popcorn (literally just cheese on top), and truffle parmesan. We suggest classic or parmesan.
Couple different slaw options add a bit to a meal too. Aside from the oil and vinegar version, they’re all on the creamier side.