Chicago has an explosive craft brewery scene and an upcoming distillery scene, but we must not forget to reap the fruit of our labor – wine. The wine bar Chicago scene provides great venues to enjoy intimate conversations and indulge in some exquisite food options that compliment the wines perfectly.
Vera is almost the quintessential wine bar. I say that because the mood is relaxing and intimate, with low-light and candles on the tables. The interior is very simple, yet refined. The wine selection is vast and rotating – they even have a few wines on tap. The Spanish influenced venue also serves appetizers along with a tapas menu. If you are feeling inspired by your glass of wine, you can sign up for a cooking class that will take you on a Spanish wine and food tour.
694 Wine & Spirits
694 Wine & Spirits is almost my ideal wine bar. The interior is made up largely of brick and modern wooden designs that flow from the bar to the stools and ceiling. They offer main floor, upstairs, and patio seating to give you variety and slightly different mood settings. You really cannot go wrong by ordering anything off of the menu; top notch. Local art can be found on the walls and a live DJ will occupy the upstairs portion some nights.
Telegraph provides a very warm, welcoming, and intimate atmosphere. The design is modern but it feels very rustic with the heavy use of dark wood and neutral color accents. They pride themselves in not only they succulent food, but they features small, family-owned European producers who craft their wines as naturally as possible. This method gives you the full flavor of the wine as it was meant to be, no artificial substances to interfere here.
Webster’s Wine Bar
Webster’s Wine Bar was dreamt up in a dusty wine bar in Spain and brought to life in the heart of Chicago. The wine chosen is usually from vineyards that they personally visit to build a personal relationship with the vineyard; this dedication shows throughout the establishment. The very dimly lit setting replicates that feeling of a Spanish wine bar with bottles adding to the decor and the feeling that you are in an exquisite wine cellar. Small plates are available to compliment your wine choices.
Ada St. provides an open-air atmosphere that is perfect for conversation. The high-vaulted ceilings with exposed wood opens up the area; the overall design is very class in the most relaxed of way – which is a very good quality. They offer an outdoor patio area to allow you to enjoy the warm summer air or just to experience a different mood. Their menu is loaded with quality items that will not disappoint you one bit. Ada St. is worth making the venture to.
Trellis is a very modern, sophisticated venue that offers a comfortable place to sit down for good conversation. The wine selection is above average, along with their food menu. Small plates are available, while pizzas, sandwiches, greens, and entrees provide a filling experience. The industrial design throughout the venue is accented by the elevated status to take you above street level.
Coppervine is truly an all around wine bar Chicago dining experience. They carefully choose their wine selection – as carefully as they prepare their succulent dishes. They do not focus solely on their wine or solely on their food; their focus is how the two interact with each other to make your pallet explode. Their menu is extensive; covering a wide range of food options that can please whatever mood you are in. The setting is unique and modern, while still retaining the sense of warmth and welcoming.
Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar
Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar is a refreshing stop to anyone in the area. They focus on wine and beer of small production with a strong emphasis on organic and biodynamic farming practices. This venue was establishment by three former Webster’s Wine Bar alum that wanted to take their experience and sculpt it into their own. The menu is fantastic all around, from their small plates to full entrees. Outdoor seating is available to fully take in the summer nights.
Bar Pastoral is subsidiary of the Pastoral deli that specializes in fine cheese. The bar combines their fabulous deli with the satisfaction of wine and other beverages. The atmosphere is very relaxed – combining friendly with intimate for the perfect mood. Their drink selection compliments their food menu by having enough variety to cater to any dish. Their food ranges from small plates and simple dishes, to exquisite entrees.
The Bluebird is a branch of Webster’s Wine Bar. It may be known as ‘Bucktown’s Original Craft Beer Bar’, but their wine selection is nothing to scoff at. The interior is very simple – in a good way. They use a lot of salvaged material to build the interior, as well as rustic fixtures to tie it all together. Their small plates cover all the basics; while their entrees may be limited, they provide the staple needed to keep your taste buds happy.