It’s finally nice out and you can hang outside without needing a space heater, fireplace, heat lamp, or the fires of Mordor to stay comfortable. Luckily, Chicago is full of new and reopened patios, and this is the perfect time to check them out. Here are six bars and restaurants where you can grab a drink outdoors this week.
We’re so glad that Bernie’s Lunch & Supper just reopened in River North, because we really like hanging out on their rooftop. The tables here are far enough apart to make it feel extra spacious, and they just expanded their awning so you don’t have to worry if it rains. They also have one of our favorite burgers in Chicago.
The secluded outdoor space at the closed Monty Burke’s in Pilsen was fantastic, so we were happy that Pilsen Yards recently took over the space and re-did the back patio. They added heated floors and a retractable roof. Now you can come here for drinks and dishes like sweet corn tamales and ceviche. You won’t even need to change your plans if it rains.
Off Color Brewing’s taproom, Mousetrap, has a great front patio. It’s full of shaded picnic tables that have plenty of distance between each other, and they’re large enough to grab beers with a small group. They don’t serve food, but you can always order drunk pizza from Pequod’s when you get home.
Machine: Engineered Dining & Drink
This Wicker Park spot just reopened their plant-filled sidewalk patio this week. If you’re familiar with Machine, you know this place is really into flowers (they have a flower shop inside their restaurant) and elaborate cocktails (the kind that comes with a sugar cage and tiny hammer). Along with a long drink menu, they also have small plates like smoked salmon spread and crispy chicken tacos.
After months of being closed, Hopleaf in Andersonville finally reopened. It has an exceptional beer selection, and the food menu (with dishes like mac and cheese, mussels, and a delicious cashew butter and fig jam sandwich) goes above and beyond what you’d find in an average bar. There’s also a large, secluded beer garden out back, which provides a nice break from the parade of pedestrians shopping on Clark street.
Moneygun is a very fun bar that’s attached to Saint Lou’s Assembly in the West Loop. It has big leather booths, great music, and fantastic cocktails. They’ve been closed for the past two weeks for renovations, but are reopening this week with more tables and an expanded space. Grab dinner on the patio next door, then plan to stay here for the rest of your night.