Fossil Fueling

The Field Bistro gives museumgoers a better dining experience

After a long day of learning about dinosaurs, pyramids and meteorites, let's face it–you're gonna need a break. Maybe even a drink.

Enter The Field Bistro, the Field Museum's new café. Visitors can feast on fresh salads, charcuterie, Midwestern cheese and craft beer, all under the watchful eye of the Field's towering T-Rex, Sue.

Fountainhead chef Cleetus Friedman, a sustainable food advocate, consulted on the opening and mobilized his network of farmers and producers.

Friedman says earnestly, "I walked into the Bistro and had tears in my eyes. Smoking Goose meats, Mick Klug Farms produce and Prairie Pure cheeses–all the things I fought for."

But how does it taste? The food is a huge step above the previous occupant, and a welcome surprise to anyone wary of institutional cafeterias.

The T-Rex Grinder ($8) is a respectable Italian sandwich filled with prosciutto, salami, olive tapenade and mustard vinaigrette. Pair a tray of cheese and salumi ($8) with a specialty beer made just for the museum. Tooth and Claw, a Czech-style Pilsner created by Off Color Brewing, is poured from a tap handle made from a cast of Sue's giant teeth.

Bread and pastries are brought in daily from West Town Bakery. If you've got kids who aren't up for something fancy, you can still get mac 'n cheese or a PB&J.