2119 S Halsted St (312-526-3385)
Nightwood’s patio wins for unconventional reasons: The mod space is covered, making it perhaps the best alfresco spot for inclement weather. And there’s a permanent fireplace, making it pleasant during Chicago’s disturbingly frequent frigid summer nights. Of course, a little sun never hurts when you’re eating outside—but chef Jason Vincent’s food is so addictive (particularly when he’s using spring and summer produce), and the negronis here are so smooth, you won’t miss the sun at all.
FOOD 9 Vincent respects ingredients as no other chef does.
DRINKS 7 Like the food, the cocktails are so simple they’re exciting.
CROWD 6 The Lula crowd after it outgrows Rainbo
VIEW 3 The only bummer: You can’t see the sky.
SPACE 7 The patio you’ve always dreamed of. If only there were more of it.