(Note: I was not asked, paid or compensated to write this “New” Old Chicago review – I just enjoy sharing my opinions as a mom! – Lisa)
The “New” Old Chicago
I took my kids (Heidi, 4 and Thor, 1) to the “New” Old Chicago in Eden Prairie for lunch on their grand re-opening day Monday. We didn’t get there in time for any of the festivities – free samples, $3,000 check given to PROP (People Reaching Out to Other People), and the whole “first 100 people in line receive a year’s worth of free pizza” promotion. (I found out people were waiting in line as early at 4:00am that morning! I definitely couldn’t have done that with 2 little kids! 🙂
BUT we did dine in just to be “among the first” to experience the new and improved Old Chicago, as their Eden Prairie restaurant is the FIRST in the nation to undergo various changes that are “meant to re-emphasize the restaurant’s commitment to quality food, great value and a welcoming atmosphere for a broad variety of customers and occasions,” according to Old Chicago’s Director of Brand Marketing, Will Powers.
I certainly saw a broad variety of customers there – moms like me with their kids, men and women in their 30s and 40s in casual work attire, young couples, retired couples. I noticed people were also at the bar (Old Chicago is known for great beer), and some were sitting outside on the patio as well (it sure has been beautiful & warm lately!).
And I thought it was a very welcoming atmosphere – SPACIOUS, too. The space between the tables was abundant for highchairs (which Thor used), wheelchairs and lots of “traffic.”
There were MANY big flat-screen TVs throughout the restaurant – wherever you sat you had a good view of one. Thor enjoyed frequently pointing at the one above us showing news and sports. I think it was one of the managers who came by and playfully interacted with him – I teased that he’s going to be a sports fan someday!
The new menu looked good – plenty of new salads, appetizers, pastas and more. Prices were reasonable. I just ordered a large, 14-inch pizza with their NEW tavern thin crust, topped with 1/2 pineapple (for me!) and 1/2 pepperoni (for Heidi). (Thankfully, Thor eats just about anything.)
New Equipment Cuts Wait Time
I know Old Chicago Eden Prairie purchased a new Thermal Oven that allows them to bake their pizzas in half the time as before — so now about 6-1/2 minutes. I noticed we did get our pizza pretty quick – and it was very hot. But it was good – Thor gobbled up all the cut-up pieces I gave him, and Heidi, enthralled & occupied with the crayons and children’s menu with coloring activities she got, FINALLY ate hers when we were almost ready to leave.
I brought leftover pizza home for my husband to eat. I was impressed with how the server handled our leftovers – she put them in a take-home box, labeled what was in it AND the date, and separated the pepperoni slices from the pineapple slices. My husband appreciated that as he ONLY eats pepperoni – and he did like it as he ate all that was left.
(EXPIRED: By the way, just a reminder that I’m doing a GIVEAWAY on my site through Friday, March 23rd. Just leave a comment telling me what food you like at Old Chicago OR would like to try! One person will win a $25 Old Chicago gift card and T-shirt!)
Overall, I can’t say we were disappointed with anything. Here’s what we enjoyed:
- Lots of friendly service – the hostess & server were cheerful and helpful, plus a total of 2 managers (I think that’s what they were) stopped by to ask how we were doing and talked to the kids
- Fast, good food for reasonable restaurant prices (our large pizza with 2 beverages came to about $18)
- Abundant space, comfortable seating, TVs everywhere
If you are looking for a good place to eat out with your kids, Old Chicago is worth the trip. -Lisa