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Uptown neighborhood guide

Find the best restaurants, bars, clubs, shops and things to do with our guide to Uptown and the Little Vietnam neighborhood of Argyle Street

Photograph: Emily Madigan
Aragon Ballroom

Uptown feels like a city within a city. When you step off the Red Line at Lawrence, the buildings feel a little taller. There's an air of old Chicago hanging over the area, which roughly runs from Irving Park Road to Foster Avenue, and from Ravenswood Avenue to the lake. The Green Mill was the preferred jazz club of Al Capone. The adjacent Uptown Theatre was once the largest movie palace in the United States. Of course, we're talking about the 1920s. The neighborhood is a little more rusty and crumbling around the edges today. Though the Green Mill and music halls like the Aragon have kept the 'hood alive, the Uptown Theatre sits unused.

But Uptown is on the uprise, and not just because of the Targets and Sonics of the world moving in. The Little Vietnam neighborhood around Argyle Street, long a culinary destination, has been joined by arguably the best restaurant in the city. Boutiques line the shopping corridor on Clark Street south of Foster. Plus, there's one of Chicago's top beaches. That never hurts.

Best restaurants in Uptown

Best restaurants in Uptown

Best bars in Uptown

Best bars in Uptown

Best attractions in Uptown

Best attractions in Uptown

Best nightlife in Uptown

Best nightlife in Uptown

Best shopping in Uptown

Best shopping in Uptown

Cheap eats in Uptown

Cheap eats in Uptown

Explore more of Uptown

Three Uptowners pick their favorite neighborhood hangouts
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Three Uptowners pick their favorite neighborhood hangouts

The cheapest and most expensive apartments in Uptown
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The cheapest and most expensive apartments in Uptown

Mini walk: Uptown gangster tour
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Mini walk: Uptown gangster tour

Uptown residents tell us their favorite neighborhood spots
Things to do

Uptown residents tell us their favorite neighborhood spots

Comments

3 comments
Rick V

"Tank" is the Chipotle of pho. It's OK for newbies and hipsters, but there are much better places on Argyle, try any of the numbered places (Pho 555, for example). And make sure to grab an egg custard tart or char siu bao at Chiu Quon Bakery near the Argyle Red Line (there's a sister branch in Chinatown).

vegetablethief

To really experience Uptown, forget the Lawrence stop.  You have to step off the Wilson and cruise the 'hood...so much culture and personality!  The BoB has amazing food and beer, and the dollop is the BEST coffee house in the city!!!


JP P

Yeesh...kinda lacking... a couple things i'd rate in there and higher:


1. Visit & take photos of the murals at Uplift and Unqiue Thrift store (within 4 blocks of each other)

2. Siam Noodle and RIce -- authentic Thai food with the BEST Thai Ice Coffee & Tea on the North Side

3.Corner of Wilson & Broadway. Just stand there for 15 minutes, and see the real diversity of people, rather than the separate but equal attitude of most of Chicago


You also need to add -- BEST PLACES to VOLUNTEER -- there's a lot of need in Uptown, but  a lot of places to help out, and change things for the better (rather than move them to some place not as "hip"). 

What makes Uptown great ,more than what you listed, are the PEOPLE, even those different from you.