Monday, October 24, 2016

Chicago Cocktail Crawl

Trip date: October 2015

Our last day of Chicago girl's trip was going to be another fun packed one! We set out to cure the effects from the last night's crawl with deep dish pizza at Lou Malnati's. I mean when in Chicago, right?

After lunch we made our way to the river for an architectural boat cruise, stopping along the way at Garrett's for a few tins of Chicago mix popcorn (completely addictive cheddar and caramel mix!).

I had been on this tour before but as the skyline of Chicago continues to grow and change it is still a great way to spend 90-minutes. Nicer if the clouds aren't so low as to obstruct some of the taller towers but still nice.

After our tour we walked to the first of our stops for the evening, the newly opened GreenRiver, a collaboration between famed restauranteur Danny Meyer and bar owners extraordinaire from New York's Dead Rabbit, Jack McGarry and Sean Muldoon. Upon finding the location we realized the bar is on the 18th floor of a hospital! Too funny!
The bar had just opened a few days prior but the cocktail menu was already looking like a hit. McGarry and Muldoon like to create stories with their menus, and this one was filled with drinks named after interesting characters who helped to build Chicago back up after the Great Fire of 1871. The space is very clean and modern and boasts an incredible terrace with views of the city and the lake.

The cocktails and the service were fantastic. We only had a small snack of frites, as we were still pretty full from lunch, but I'm looking forward to checking out dinner my next time in town.
From here we headed to the Freehand Hotel bar, The Broken Shaker. The spot is quite small and has a very hipster vibe. The cocktail menu is super playful but for me some of the combinations actually sounded gross (Garrett caramel and cheddar cocktail anyone?)
Sadly, although our drinks were all fine, the big problem here was the almost laughably bad service. Slow to come around, put out to answer questions, and even slower to come back with cocktails. This bar has won some top awards but at least on this visit none of us were impressed.

On to our final stop, Three Dots and a Dash. Everything about this place is great! Slightly secretive entrance? Check (door is in the alley with stairs descending to the subterranean bar)! Fun atmosphere? Most definitely; this feels like an original Trader Vik's but better! Delicious tiki drinks? Yes, yes, and yes! And since we had a few rounds you can add some more yeses to that!
I loved everything here! The service was awesome, the drinks were really good, we even had a little pupu platter of good bar nibbles. This was a super fun end to our evening and our trip.

We headed back to Logan Square and packed up our stuff. Kate headed home to Geneva the next day while Forest and I flew off to continue the party in New York (more on that later!).

Absolutely fantastic time; thanks ladies!

All Chicago photos here.

Other posts from this trip:
Easing into Chicago
A Night at The Aviary
Culture and Cocktails in Chicago

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