As the largest and most-visited city in the Midwest, Chicago is in no shortage of upscale bars and dining venues.
This lively and cosmopolitan city is proud to be home to Charles Joly of The Aviary, recently awarded the title of the World’s Best Bartender by Diageo World Class. Our guide shows that Chicago is no stranger to upscale nightlife and features Cuvee Chicago, a luxurious bar with a focus on high end champagne. Serving an array of champagne cocktails and specialty martinis, Cuvee Chicago is one of the many bars demonstrating Chicago’s lead in the cocktail culture.
From all encompassing roof top views to glowing fireplaces and high backed bar stools, our guide to the best bars in Chicago shows that there is something for everyone to sip in the Windy City.
Since opening in 2011, The Aviary has been serving intricate cocktails showcasing the same attention to detail as Owner and Chef Grant Achatz’s dishes, one of the leaders in molecular gastronomy.
Some of the offerings – including bourbon infused in a frozen egg – could be considered elaborate scientific experiments. Offering a unique sensory experience, every cocktail at The Aviary is truly a masterpiece.
THE VIOLET HOUR
Located within the heart of Wicker Park, The Violet Hour is a James Beard Outstanding Bar Program nominee.
The decadent interior boasts navy floor to ceiling curtains, revealing a candlelit lounge and blue leather chairs, creating the perfect relaxed setting to enjoy drinks.
The handcrafted artisanal cocktails include Juliet and Romeo, a cocktail comprising of beefeater, mint, cucumber and rose water.
The term Cuvee refers to the most luxurious selection of grapes located within the Champagne wine region in the northeast of France.
As the name suggests, this upscale lounge provides an intimate setting with a focus on champagne. The champagne cocktails served at Cuvee include Chandon Bubble-Tini, a creative mix of Chandon rose, ciroc, fresh cut strawberries and simple syrup.
ROOF ON THE WIT
Roof on the Wit boasts impressive expansive views of Chicago’s tallest skyscrapers, providing the perfect backdrop for this downtown destination.
Not only does Roof on the Wit offer a wide selection of hand crafted cocktails, they also offer a superior menu which has featured in Michigan Avenue Magazine as having ‘A Sunday brunch like no other’.
On the menu you’ll find flatbreads, dips and spreads, sushi rolls and various treats.
VERTIGO SKY LOUNG
Situated on the 26th floor of the Dana Hotel and Spa, Vertigo Sky Lounge boasts chic, modern furnishings and magnificent views of the Chicago skyline.
Cocktails are handcrafted by renowned Chicago mixologists and include speciality drinks such as Still Life With Melon – a mix of grey goose le melon vodka, giffard apricot liquer, luxardo aperitivo, acacia honey and fresh lemon juice.
The latest concept, the Bartender’s Booth, offers off-menu craft cocktails and exclusive beverage previews.
THE BAR AT THE PENINSULA CHICAGO
The glowing fireplace and high-backed bar stools set the scene for a warm, comfortable and cosy bar at The Peninsula Chicago.
Located on East Superior Street and on the fifth floor of The Peninsula Chicago Downtown Hotel, this bar is a stone’s throw away from Magnificent Mile and a wide range of restaurants and shops.
Not only does The Peninsula Chicago offer a wide range of cocktails, they also offer tasty bar bites, such as mini Kobe burgers, marinated Spanish octopus and various types of sushi and sashimi.
Named ‘Chicago’s Hottest Night Club’ by Entertainment Weekly and one of the ‘Sexiest Places in the World’ by Cosmopolitan, The Underground continues to offer personalization and attention to detail.
The Lounge’s wine offering boasts brands such as Bryant Family, Opus One and Screaming Eagle, putting The Underground in the top tier of wine offerings by any bar in the country.