October 17, 2013
Rockit Burger Bar
3700 N. Clark St. 773-645-4400
When the owners of Rockit Bar & Grill's Wrigleyville location realized that a majority of customers were ordering burgers, they revamped the menu to put the spotlight on this juicy favorite. Options include the award-winning Rockit Burger (topped with brie, date aioli and crispy shallots) as well as unique creations such as the The Hottie with breaded jalapenos, pepper jack and ghost pepper aioli.
3023 N. Broadway 773-296-6901
The menu at this garden-level Mexican-inspired restaurant changes often, but you can always count on plenty of grilled meats, complex sauces and seafood. Bring a bottle of red wine to make your own sangria or tequila to spike the house-made limeade.
917 W. Belmont Ave. 773-929-1123
This long-time favorite for Northern Indian cuisine offers plenty of vegetarian dishes, including saag paneer (sauteed spinach with ginger, garlic and cheese), chana masala (garbanzo beans in a kicky curry) and melt-in-your-mouth spiced cabbage.
2947 N. Broadway 773-472-4781
The rustic interior--and tons of bottles--at this restaurant attachment to the Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine retail shop conjures a wine-and-cheese bar vibe, but Top Chef contestant Chrissy Camba's menu of small and large plates puts this spot firmly in restaurant territory.
Andy's Thai Kitchen
946 W. Wellington St. 773-549-7821
Devotees of chef Andy Aroonrasameruang's authentic Thai cooking at Tac Quick have followed him to his new outpost near the Wellington Brown Line station. Bring your own bottle or six-pack to pair with spicy, crunchy som tum salad or a range of noodle, curry and fried rice entrees.
3155 N. Broadway 773-857-3155
Lakeview welcomed its first brewpub this year in the form of DryHop, where made-on-premise beers--available by the glass or flight--pair with a selection of hearty sandwiches, burgers, seafood and bar snacks, plus a newly launched brunch menu.
3317 N. Broadway 773-296-6800
There are plenty of sushi spots along Broadway, but this one's a favorite for the fresh fish and sizzling scene. Don't miss Wang's, the tiny, unmarked lair of a lounge next door where the bartenders garnish martinis with fresh slices of ginger and orchids plucked from vases on the counter.
3726 N. Broadway 773-871-8887
No matter what kicks off the party at this long-standing gay bar—karaoke, bingo or country dance lessons—the night always ends with a DJ-fueled, afterhours dance party.
3868 N. Lincoln Ave. 773-327-3868
When chef Carol Wallack, a California surfer girl who splits her time between Hawaii and Chicago, opened a restaurant on Lakeview's north end, this is the result: Midwest-sourced meats and produce prepared with island inspiration.
Bolat African Cuisine
3346 N. Clark St. 773-665-1100
This African eatery serves a menu of mostly Nigerian dishes, including spicy stews served with fufu, a dough made with sweet potatoes.
3763 N. Southport Ave. 773-477-5466
A favorite for dates, this candlelit BYOB Argentine steakhouse serves massive platters of grilled meat that make a tasty match for your own bottle of red wine.
3856 N. Ashland Ave. 773-472-0471
Chili-spiced ceviche and steaks cooked a la parrilla (on the grill) are highlights at the Peruvian BYOB. For a switch from the usual six-pack or bottle of wine, bring a bottle of vodka to spike a pitcher of passion fruit juice.
Sluggers Sports Bar
3540 N. Clark St. 773-248-0055
This corner bar just down the street from Wrigley Field is the only place in the city where you can find batting cages, dueling pianos and a stiff drink all under one roof.
2942 N. Lincoln Ave. 773-871-2414
This Colombian steakhouse specializes in traditional dishes ranging from arepas (cornbread with cheese and chorizo) to the entrana, a skirt steak doctored up with a secret blend of spices.
3819 N. Broadway 773-868-9866
Food Network personalities Dan Smith and Steve McDonagh serve up twists on comfort food classics ranging from bacon meatloaf and mac 'n' cheese to some especially popular fried chicken made with a cornflake crust.
Frog N Snail
3124 N. Broadway 773-661-9166
Chef Dale Levitski, known by local foodies for his turns on "Top Chef" as well as his Lincoln Park restaurant Sprout, dreamed up his own spin on French bistro favorites such as escargots, cassoulet and steak frites at this playfully named restaurant.
3010 N. Broadway 773-327-5101
This laid-back tavern's bragging right is its wooden facade that looks like the end of a whiskey barrel.
The Long Room
1612 W. Irving Park Road 773-665-4500
For a pint of craft beer or a strong manhattan mixed up by a friendly barkeep, look to further than this bar on Lakeview's north edge. Walk past the super-long wood-trimmed bar to find by cozy booths in the back, plus a tucked-away patio for warm-weather sipping.
1934 W. Irving Park Road 773-871-3757
In the early morning hours when most bars are shuttered, this pub is a magnet for European soccer (or football, as they say) fans watching games broadcast from across-the-ocean time zones with Irish coffee in hand. At night, it's a homey place for a pint or three.
Jeni's Ice Creams
3404 N. Southport Ave. 773-348-7139
This modern ice cream parlor peddles the sweet creations of Jeni Britton Bauer, the founder of Ohio-based Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams. Order a scoop or take home pints of flavors such as salty caramel, wildberry-lavender and whiskey-pecan.
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