Yes, you could just stay holed up in your apartment listening to the Frozen soundtrack on repeat ("I do wanna build a snowman, I do, I do, I do!!!"), or you could definitely not do that and instead check out any of these eight new spots that had the intestinal fortitude to open their doors this month.
8 January openings everyone in Chicago is about to start talking about
Links Taproom (click here for address and deets)
Links' menu overflow-eth with craft beer, artisanal sausages, and hand-cut fries, which means you kinda can't go wrong. To be extra sure though, do the "Lover of the Bayou" with andouille, crawfish tails, and red pepper remoulade, a (very) generous side of "Buried Alive” fries, which're topped with Italian sausage, bacon, cheddar, giardiniera & green onions, and a glass of Off-Color Brewing’s Apex Predator.
Chicago Distilling Company (click here for address and deets)
This badass-looking, 46-seat bar and distillery (and hotly anticipated stop on our distillery drinking guide) boasts a brief cocktail menu with a blend of classic and modern craft cocktails that highlight their house vodka and 90-proof white whiskey (both available for retail, too), as well as a selection of wine and beer.
Begyle Brewing Taproom (click here for address and deets)
Get your growlers/stomachs filled at Begyle's new 600sqft tasting room, where they're pouring eight brews including their Flannel Pajamas oatmeal stout, Quagmire double IPA, and Johnny Quest Thinks We’re Sellouts, a Black IPA collab with Dryhop. Definitely tack them onto our brewery bar crawl list.
Woodie's Flat (click here for address and deets)
Near North Side
This Old Town burger joint from the Big Onion Tavern Group offers everything a glorified dive bar should: 5oz burgers grilled on a 54in wood-burning grill (might we suggest the Mac Attack topped with smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, lettuce, Sriracha mayo, and mac and cheese?), cheesy bread sticks called “Soggies” served with au jus for dipping, funnel cake ice cream sandwiches, and a deep craft beer list.
Blue Door Farm Stand (click here for address and deets)
Locavores/normal people who like eating locally, rejoice -- a new, locally focused farm stand's now open in Lincoln Park and doing some pretty great stuff, like after-work charcuterie, a Grown-Up Grilled Cheese (Gruyere, Havarti, baby Swiss, tomatoes, rosemary honey, multigrain), and house-made jams and jellies.
Ravenswood Q (click here for address and deets)
Chow down on upscale versions of smoked chicken, ribs, and brisket, or just go straight for the BUFFALO CHICKEN EGG ROLLS at this quality BBQ hangout on the 1,800 block of Irving Park Rd.
Fleetwood (click here for address and deets)
This sleek South Loop lounge offers shareable American fare fit for a Tinder date night. Split salmon croquette sliders and prosciutto-wrapped shrimp under the glow of one of the space’s modern chandeliers, and return on Sunday for a comfort food-heavy brunch.
Pearl Tavern (click here for address and deets)
Stunning mermaid mural painted on the ceiling? Check. Riverside tavern? Check. Oyster and crudo bar, shareable plates of savory crab churros, and grilled octopus served over Sicilian caponata? Alllll the checks.
1. Links Taproom1559 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago
2. Chicago Distilling Company2359 N Millwaukee Ave, Chicago
3. Begyle Brewing1800 W Cuyler, Chicago
4. Woodie's Flat1535 N Wells St, Chicago
5. Blue Door Farm Stand843 W Armitage Ave, Chicago
6. Ravenswood Q1800 West Irving Park Rd, Chicago
7. Fleetwood Restaurant and Lounge2333 S Michigan Ave, Chicago
8. Pearl Tavern180 N Wacker Dr, Chicago
Links is a taproom that's got tons of lip-licking brews, fries that're topped with Italian sausage, bacon, cheddar, giardiniera, and green onions, and an awesome selection of non-brew beverages as well.
Chicago Distilling Company is a family run operation led by brothers Jay and Victor DiPrizio and Jay's wife Noelle. It's part distillery, part tasting room, and is sure to be serving up some great local home-grown liquor.
This fresh and pumping brewery's doling out their own delicious brews -- head to the tap room for a taste!
At Woodie's Flat you can get your favorite American beer and a delicious wood-fired burger to match. Look for drink specials and great food at this Near North Side establishment.
Blue door, located in the heart of Lincoln Park, is a neighborhood cafe and artisanal market offering locally sourced seasonal food and loads of warm and cold drink choices.
This BBQ hotspot is serving up chicken, ribs, brisket, pulled pork, and everything in between. Check it out!
Fleetwood Chicago is an American bar and grill located in the South Loop that is serving up small plates with a healthy serving of events like “Wine Down Wednesdays” and “Acoustic Thursday Nights”.
The pearl Tavern comes to us via restaurant developer Adolfo Garcia who has taken on the task of bringing old-style Chicago back to well, Chicago. Expect fresh seafood and oysters galore at this charming establishment.