photo credit we are the barkers
I’m so proud of this city, and I loved living there so much that I thought I’d share some of my favorite spots with you – a guide if you ever visit Chicago or if you live here and want to try a few new places. Today I’m going to start with my old Chicago neighborhood – River West.
So, River West – it’s a tiny little neighborhood along Milwaukee from Grand to Chicago east of the Kennedy Expressway and west of the North Branch of the Chicago River and there are tons of fine dining and inexpensive cafes, wine bars and coffee shops. There’s an intersection at Grand, Milwaukee and Halsted with several great places – La Scarola, Iguana Cafe, Piccolo Sogno and The Dawson. River West also rubs elbows with some of the trendier neighborhoods in the city – Wicker Park, River North and the West Loop are all just a few blocks away. Let’s eat and drink -
Iguana Cafe - A true local hangout with a European feel – I love it here. Try the crepes or the paninis. Linger over coffee or a glass of wine. Also a great spot for brunch.
La Scarola - this little restaurant is the real thing. Healthy sized portions of authentic Italian cuisine – I love their grilled calamari and any of their pasta dishes.
Piccolo Sogno -
Delicious Italian food and amazing atmosphere. It has the best outdoor patio in the city and we order the antipasto appetizer every time.
Previously mentioned Piccolo here
Paramount Room - Craft beer, burgers and specialty cocktails. I like to grab a bite at the bar.
The Point - Grab a table outside in the sun and enjoy a great classic cocktail or beer from their long list.
694 Wine Bar - I love this spot, one of my favorites in the city! Delicious plates of meats and cheeses and an excellent wine selection. Go Wednesday night for BBQ night all year long!
Silver Palm - A railroad dining car turned restaurant and a great spot for dinner – or take a seat at one of the sidewalk tables.
Matchbox Bar - Very narrow, hip bar – could possibly be Chicago’s tiniest bar. Have a chat with one of the bartendars and a quirky cocktail. Can’t go wrong with a Manhattan – they marinate their own cherries in bourbon.
Big Shoulders Coffee - Grab your morning coffee and a fresh pastry. They’ve got wifi too if you need it.
Thalia Spice - an excellent little Thai cafe
Duran - It’s part of a small chain but the sandwiches are delicious and it’s BYOB
Windy City Cafe - a neighborhood gem and the very best breakfast sandwiches in the city! Family owned, lots of traditional breakfast and lunch options and their coffee comes from Big Shoulders.
The Dawson - a casual spot with three bars – upstairs, downstairs, outside – and an American menu that makes use of a wood-burning grill. This place just opened in the fall and is a great addition to the neighborhood!