While Lake Michigan provides a beautiful view and plenty of summertime leisure activities, it does not grant us the seafood treasures of coastal cities. GT fills that void by providing us with one of the best places to eat seafood in Chicago. You can find every creature from the sea here—there are oysters on the half shell, creamy clam chowder, buttery lobster rolls and grilled prawns. Close your eyes and you might even believe you’re eating on the shore.
The Berkshire Room is a comforting oasis in the bustle of River North. Its cocktails and bar snacks will help you easily pass the time between work and dinner or help you relax after a long afternoon of shopping. Just tell the bartender your desired spirit, flavor profile and glassware, and he’ll take care of everything.
When Brendan Sodikoff opened this River North spot, Chicago’s doughnut craze was still in its infancy. Now, the Doughnut Vault has a roaming van and a second location near the French Market, each serving a rotating selection of glazed treats and cups of Bow Truss Coffee. You may have to wait in line, but we can think of few better ways to start the day than with some fried dough and a cup of joe.
That heavenly, heady smell of spices on this stretch of Old Town can be attributed to Patty Erd, the daughter of Milwaukee’s royal spice family, the Penzeys. Patty and husband Tom inherited the biz, expanded to Chicago and have been the go-to for bakers and cooks seeking seasoning for decades. Stock up on staples like sea salt and whole peppercorns, plus learn the difference between cinnamons (there are many) while splurging on saffron and snacking on crystallized ginger.
When you're talking Near North Side, you're talking night clubs. And when you're talking night clubs, you're talking popularity, bodies, cocktails…a lot more than music. Billy Dec's Rockit Ranch Productions revamped this River North dance destination in 2013. Primary, Spy Bar and Sound-Bar may lure in bigger-name DJs from far afield, but this pretty-people haven won your vote with its dedication to the local scene, throwing modern house weeklies like the Every Damn Wednesday parties and Chicago Industry Alliance Sundays.