Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

Posts from January 2014

Wine Corks

A question I often hear is, “What’s your favorite bar in Chicago?” It’s nearly impossible for me to pick a favorite, but when I was asked to choose three of my go-to wine bars, I had some ideas.  Wanting to be fair and recognizing that a plethora of newbies have hit the Chicago drinking scene, I took it upon myself to do some on-site research.  I also re-visited some old haunts just to make sure they were still as good as I remembered.  I had a plan of attack and descended upon over a dozen wine bars in over a dozen neighborhoods. One thing became clear: I was looking for an experience. 

Make it a 'Phantom' Valentine

Friday, January 31, 2014 12:00 AM by Robert Bullen

Phantom of the Opera 

There's something about Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera that sweeps you away. Yes, there's Lloyd Webber's lush score that features the well-known anthems "Think of Me" and "All I Ask of You." Lucky for us, Phantom has arrived for an extended stay through March 2 at Chicago's Cadillac Palace, and it's a perfect conclusion to a magical and romantic night on the town.

7 Places For Pear on Chicago Restaurant Week Menus

Thursday, January 30, 2014 12:00 AM by Liz Behler

Pear Salad Nellcote

This time of year, pears often get unfairly sidelined in favor of other seasonal ingredients, such as apples, chestnuts and butternut squash. But during a thorough look through Chicago Restaurant Week menus, we saw varieties of the winter fruit popping up at eateries across the city. From soup to pizza, check out our suggestions for where to find inventive dishes using pears. 

Stingray Touch
We've made it through the first month of the new year, and we've still got quite the year to look forward to in Chicago. I love raising my kids in Chicago; every year we can count on brand-new exhibits, restaurants, educational programs and stage performances that welcome children and families with open arms. Here are some of our most anticipated family-friendly events and attractions for 2014.

Weekend Alert: January 31-February 2

Thursday, January 30, 2014 12:00 AM by Emmy Carragher

Weekend Alert Skyline Sunset

Are you full yet from Chicago Restaurant Week? Well, save room for more this weekend, and clear your schedule of all Netflix-ing and holing up in your home. It's time to emerge from the Polar Vortex and take part in the city-wide celebrations for Chicago's Chinese New Year Celebrations all weekend long! Find out more, here's your Weekend Alert.

Neighborhood Dining Guide: Hyde Park

Wednesday, January 29, 2014 12:00 AM by Matt Kirouac


Much more than merely The University of Chicago's backyard, Hyde Park is a cultural gem on Chicago's south side, with prime views of the city skyline and lots to see, do - and eat. From modern chef-driven restaurants and splashy Asian eateries to authentic Middle Eastern fare, it's easy and delicious to eat your way around Hyde Park, which is handily accessible via the Metra or several southbound bus routes from downtown.

Animal Shelter This past month, winter in Chicago has been pretty brutal. When we rush home to warm up, it's easy to forget that there are a lot of pets in Chicago that don't have a nice warm home to go to. January is the perfect month to take a visit to one of Chicago's various pet shelters and rescue a pet from the cold Chicago winter, so take a visit to the ones closest to you! Even if adopting a pet may not be ideal for you and your lifestyle now, most pet shelters are always looking for enthusiastic volunteers or donations.

Chicago Blues Festival

One of Chicago's most treasured music festivals is set to return this summer with a trio of legendary soulful singers as the main attractions: the festival is none other than the 31st Annual Chicago Blues Festival. Bettye LaVette, Aaron Neville and Dr. John will all headline Chicago Blues Fest, June 13-15 in Grant Park. Celebrating "Blues by the Lake," the festival is free admission and open daily from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. A complete line-up of performers and schedule for all stages, as well as preview events, will be released later this spring.

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