Cheers Team Vodka! This post comes to you while enjoying my Sippin Gypsy Spicy Vodka Sip.
Wow Chicago, you have no shortage of creative, refreshing and innovative restaurant and bar options. I was almost overwhelmed with the quantity of truly memorable adventures for my pallet. It was hard to narrow down a list for this post, but below are a few spots that really left a lasting impression on me in both food and beverage offerings without compromising quality and the art of their craft.
1. Raised Bar
A swanky bar with sweeping views of Downtown Chicago and some of the best cocktails I've had. Raised Bar is a definite must do in Chicago. I would easily label it one of the best rooftop bars in Chicago. Raised Bar filled up quickly with friends and co workers meeting for an after work cocktail, while others were enjoying this rooftop spot as a way to start their evening out. Raise Bar is located in the Renaissance Hotel and an easy stop if your travels take you through the Chicago Loop neighborhood.
Step back into time into the Chicago Athletic Club, once a club for Chicago's elite, now turned hotel with several unique bars to enjoy with my favorite easily being Cindy's. This rooftop bar is another one of the best bars in Chicago in my opinion. Cindy's was a modern add on and offers beautiful views of Millenium Park. Cindy's was packed every time I visited with good reason, the drinks are well crafted and beautiful, the food is delicious and the views are simply breathtaking.
Suggested by a friend, I stepped into a dark and chic restaurant and then down a candle lit staircase to a hidden gem and one of the best bars in Chicago. With subtle nods to prohibition days, this secretive spot has some of the best cocktails I've ever tried. Bavette's not only knows how to prepare delicious food (steak is one of their specialties) but this spot also delivers on ambiance and creative cocktails.
4. The Purple Pig
This spot came recommended by my concierge for lunch before my flight home. What a way to end a trip in Chicago. The foods were amazing and creative. Chef Jimmy Bannos is clearly not afraid of bold flavors. The Bone Marrow was incredible, I almost ordered a second. Located right off Michigan Ave. Purple Pig seemed always packed with a variety of locals and tourists. Their wine list was impressive with carefully selected labels from various regions. This quickly became a spot I always visit when in Chicago.
5. True Food Kitchen
I usually try to seek out smaller local spots, but the mission behind what True Food Kitchen as a business stands for really resonates with my personal preferences in food and health. I was glad my first experience for True Food Kitchen was in Chicago. Their detail to seasonally fresh options allows each dish to really shine.
6. Cochon Volant
We found this spot by simply passing by. The ambiance was so cool and inviting and the menu beckoned us in. This is a place to indulge in proteins. Steak Tartare, Roasted Bone Marrow and the most amazing slice of Bacon I ever had #thickcutbacon. The staff was very engaging and the bartender crafted some amazing cocktails just by asking our flavor preferences. There was so much more on the menu I look forward to trying on my next visit.
7. Green Street Smoked Meats
I think this spot was made for me. Rustic and casual with with a food flavor that raised my standard for smoked and bar-b-que meats. Every bite was so bold with flavor and the cocktails were well crafted and stood up to the loud flavors from the meats. The whole neighborhood boasts charming restaurants and bars and seems a great place to spend the evening bar hopping.
8. RPM Italian
Landing in Chicago late, but not wanting to compromise on quality and ambiance, RPM Italian was ready and willing to delight. RPM Italian seemed one of those places to go to celebrate with your girlfriends or have a romantic dinner. Currently the holder of the "Sippin Gypsy The BEST I Ever Had" for their Black Truffle Beef Tartare. Every dish was well flavored and resonated with classic Italian influence. Their cocktail menu was nicely edited to offer variety without overwhelming.
9. Tortoise Supper Club
I wanted live music, great drinks and something tasty to pick at after a few cocktails. Tortoise Supper Club gave me all of that in a charming setting. Chicago has no shortage of great spots with live music and well crafted cocktails, but the staff here made the experience all the more enjoyable. My first interaction with the staff started with the owner, Keene Addington, it was clear he had a passion and dedication for his business. He invited us back for the live music the following night and even reserved a table for our party. Tortoise Supper Club is on my list to visit for dinner on my next trip, but as far as ambiance, detail and cocktails, this place was memorable and definite when in Chicago.
I knew this place would be great when I saw tour busses bringing people here. We stopped in twice and both nights the music was great and the place packed with locals and tourists. The drinks were well made and overall this was a great spot to just step up to the bar, order your favorite cocktail and simply enjoy pure jazz.
Lover of travel to charming places dusted with unique flavor. Join me as I explore the world sip by sip. Cheers!