Don't deny it--you're a girly girl. You like to wear pink, spent years mooning over your future wedding plans and gave that childhood tea set a serious workout. Now that the holiday season has arrived, there's no better time for a fantastical, real-life tea party, and these Chicago dining rooms and haute hotel lobbies are hosting the best of them.
Days of excess are behind us--at least for now. Instead, the last 365 ushered in a wealth of neighborhood gems, some presided over by star chefs. Most have counter-service; all share a penchant for a rusticity while relying heavily on seasonal ingredients. From modern-but-earthy Italian flavors to avant-Asian treats and complexly flavored, street food-inspired eats, one thing's for sure: Chicagoans are reaping the rewards. (Photo: XOCO)
That promotion you were hoping for? It went by the wayside. The sweetie you adored? History. And, sigh, we lost the Olympic bid, too. Fortunately, the new year brings hope. It's your chance to party like a rock star while beginning anew. Make it happen at these hot spots on New Year's Eve in Chicago, both low-key and luxe.
Like any great classic cocktail, the martini's provenance is shrouded in mystery. Was it created in the mid-19th century in Martinez, Calif., as a celebratory drink for a struck-rich miner? Or was it a clever bartender who just happened to put two and two together when Martini & Rossi's dry vermouth arrived stateside? It's likely none of that mattered to the beloved cocktail's long list of fans, including Winston Churchill, Ernest Hemingway and James Bond. Whether you like it shaken or stirred, with gin or vodka, here's where to go in Chicago to get yours. (Photo: Shutterstock.)
All it takes is a glance around your El car to notice that the '80s have made a comeback--Madonna-inspired ripped stockings and all. Whether you savored the decade that defined decadence or were happy to hang up your hair crimper once and for all, you can't deny that the '80s were fun. We've found plenty of totally rad ways for Chicagoans to relive the days of perms, pantsuits and the Pet Shop Boys. (Photo: Shutterstock.)
While soul food knows no season, we find ourselves especially craving rib-sticking dishes like crispy fried chicken, creamy macaroni and cheese and cornbread when the temps start to dip. Though the authentic soul food restaurants located on Chicago's South Side take cues from the cuisine of the South, they are thankfully much more conveniently located. (Photo: Army & Lou's.)
You're looking good, Chicago. No, really. Who cuts your hair? Who makes your skin look so rosy? Who massages away your tension and keeps you bright-eyed and bushy-tailed? We live in the city that Forbes magazine recently voted the most stressed in America; pampering is key. From now until Dec. 2, spend a few minutes voting for the Best of Citysearch Chicago for spas, salons and beauty. To get you started, here are a few of my top primping picks. (Photo courtesy of mySpa at The Fairmont Chicago.)
Your female friends have it made in the salon and spa department, but as a modern man, you have grooming needs, too. If Enya and aromatherapy oils make you squirm, fear not. There are plenty of spas and salons around Chicago where a guy can get groomed with his masculine sensibilities intact. The next time you're in need of a buff, a trim, a shave or--dare we suggest it--a wax, score services at these guy-oriented spots. (Photo: Urban Joe by Emilie Zanger.)
Finding the perfect slice of pizza is something we Chicagoans don't take lightly. With so many great pizza restaurants around town, it can be hard to narrow down the best pizza in Chicago, but we've done it. It's time to drool over our list of 10 best pizzas in Chicago--in no particular order--from thin, crispy crusts to thick, deep dish indulgences. No matter what your style, we've got a pizza for you. (Photo: La Madia.)
Crunchy leaves, bone-chilling winds and slow-simmered dishes: These things all-but-spell fall. Not to be overlooked, however, is the mighty pumpkin. Plucked from farm stands to be carved or whipped into treats, pumpkins are a hauntingly tasty--and pretty--addition to your seasonal repertoire. Here's where you can get your fill.