Here's The Jist:

As a Drink Editor I receive a lot of requests for restaurant, bar and nightlife recommendations. So I started a blog to chronicle Chicago's social scene which eventually morphed into New York's drinking and dining scene. After years in Chicago, I'm now a full time resident of NYC, the East Village to be exact. Look forward to sharing the latest and greatest from the wine & spirits world, straight from the Big Apple.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

One SixtyBlue: Burgers, Beers & Beats

Throw your preconceived notions out the door. This West Loop hot spot may be decked out with white table clothes and outfitted with an award winning chef (that would be Executive Chef Michael McDonald to be exact), but with the introduction of two new relaxed chic nights- Burgers, Beer and Beats on Thursdays and Play Dough on Fridays-you’ll put the kibosh on those reso’s and pop in for some casual and tasty fare.

My culinary cohort and I ventured into one sixtyblue around Happy Hour last Friday. We were met with smiles and whisked to two strategically placed corner seats at the end of the bar. It was our people watching perch. As I stared at the glass bar shelving (I analyze every bar) I smiled because it was refreshing to see understated small batch, hand-crafted beers sitting along side flashy bottles of Patron and Grey Goose. The bar and lounge areas are sophisticated but with the addition of a lower priced bar menu with feel good food that’s always in style (read: hand packed MJ burgers and Neapolitan-style pizzas), one sixtyblue exudes a welcoming, come-as-you-are vibe.

The deal of the summer takes place on Thursday nights at Blue Bar where they offer $4 craft beers and $4 burgers to complement the smooth beats that bounce slowly around the room. Can’t make it on a Thursday? Pop in on Friday for $5 wood-fired pizzas and $4 Prosecco cocktails. If you’re looking for a sweet addition to your bubbly, ask for a splash of one of their fresh-squeezed juices such as rhubarb, green apple or blueberry. And you can’t go wrong with their yummy pizzas like Blue Cheese & Spring Onion, Mozzarella & Ramps (a unique vegetable similar to a wild leek) and White Pizza with Zucchini Blossoms.

We split an MJ burger, topped with sweet barbeque sauce, scallions, thick cheddar cheese and a hefty piece of smoked bacon then segued into a blistering moderately sized spicy sausage pizza. True to our foodie form, we didn’t stop there.

A couple of deep fried pickles here. Some shoe string French fries there. We may or may not have dabbled in a special order of Hawaiian Yellowfin and it has been said that pastry chef, Stephanie “I need no last name” Prida, prepared two remarkable desserts that left me, quite literally, speechless.

It was a great evening and as a local West Looper, they’ll be seeing this face regularly. Hope they’re ready.

Both evenings officially kick off at 5:30pm and music is queued up at 6pm.

One SixtyBlue

One SixtyBlue

Friday, May 1, 2009

Cheeky Chicago Party at Nactional 27

It’s with the eternal words of the legendary group, Debarge, I open this oh-so-Cheeky, Cinco de Mayo Tribute.

Oh, to the beat of the rhythm of the night,
dance until the morning light.
Forget about the worries on your mind;
you can leave them all behind. To the beat of the rhythm of the night
Oh, the rhythm of the night
Oh yeah.

And that is exactly what we will be doing on Tuesday, May 5th at River North’s Nacional 27. Say buh-bye to sloppy tequila shots, greasy quesadillas and a-thousand-calories-a-pop Margaritas. This Tuesday is all about celebrating Cinco in style.
I’m convinced that the Skinny Girl Margarita is the best thing to have come from the Real Housewives of New York and I’m excited to say that Chicago has found the boyfriend to the infamous SGM: Adam Seger’s Look Better Naked Margarita which combines partida reposado, all organic açaí-agave-rosemary-egg white. It’s the perfect cocktail to kick-start the warm weather months.
For those of you that may have heard of Nacional 27, but are yet to pay homage to the Latin-American food Mecca, I may hit you.

No really. You need to go.

And with the inexpensive invite to join us next week, there really isn’t an excuse.
See all party details here:

Chicago Scene May 2009