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T+L's Definitive Guide to Chicago


Photo: Kevin Miyazaki

Local Take

Four natives share their favorite spots in the city.

Zoe Ryan

Curator of Architecture and Design, Art Institute of Chicago

“For a night out, I love the Hideout, in Bucktown; it’s a music venue where anything goes—from Baudelaire-inspired shows to performances by indie rock bands. Around the corner, Ada Street ($$) serves delicious small plates (try the crisp lamb ‘scrumpets’) and craft cocktails. In West Loop, Randolph Street Market is one of my favorite boutiques, with great vintage finds.No one should leave Chicago without a ride on the El train around the Loop—it’s the best way to see the city.”

Grant Achatz

Chef-owner, Alinea and Next

“The trek to the Far North Side is worth it for Katsu (2651 W. Peterson Ave.; 773/ 784-3383; $$$), hands down the city’s most authentic sushi restaurant. Many people think Midwestern cuisine is all about meat and potatoes, but GT Fish & Oyster ($$) proves them wrong. The seafood dishes are excellent (don’t miss the bacon clam chowder). For the best coffee in town, I personally enjoy La Colombe for its personal touch and unbeatable brews. Exploring the shoreline of Lake Michigan is a must—it’s what makes Chicago unique.”

Lisa Rigney and Liz Patelski

Owner-designers, Remi Canarie

“On Michigan Avenue, Space 519 has a selection of coffee-table books, clothing from emerging designers, and cool housewares. The Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago is a state-of-the-art theater that screens independent, international, and classic films. When we need to hammer out ideas, we go to Bow Truss, in East Lakeview, a funky new coffee shop complete with sleds, canoes, and an incredible speaker installation built out of vintage suitcases.”


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