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December is filled with festive events and wintry delights at these Chicago restaurants and hotels:


-Split-Rail (2500 W. Chicago Ave.)

Will present a family-style Hanukkah dinner of semi-traditional holiday fare paired with wine, 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 4. Chef Zoe Schor’s special guest for the evening—her dad, will help her in the kitchen. Tickets are $70 per person; reserve at

-20 East (The Talbott Hotel, 20 E. Delaware) 

Daily specials during Hanukkah will include: Matzo Ball Soup; Grilled Beef Brisket with Romesco; Latkes with Apple Mostarda; and Challah with butter and truffle salt. Reservations:, 312.397.3633. 

Screen Shot 2018 11 20 At 2 24 43 Pm
Photo Courtesy of Split Rail


-Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel (221 N. Columbus Dr.) 

Will offer a four-course menu on Dec. 24 and 25, featuring Smoked Chestnut Soup, Winter Citrus Salad, guest’s choice of a main, family-style sides and dessert. $58; $22 for kids ages 4-12. Reservations: 312.477.0234.

-20 East at (The Talbott Hotel) 

Celebrates the holiday with the following a la carte specials in addition to the regular menu: Deviled Eggs with Chili and Bacon; Baked Rigatoni; Double-Cut Pork Chop with Wilted Greens and Apple Mostarda; and Grilled Turmeric Cauliflower with Pomegranate and Labneh.

-Morton's The Steakhouse 

Will be open on Christmas Eve from 4pm – 9pm and Christmas Day from 2pm – 9pm. The regular menu will be available with specials including:

  • Côte de Boeuf Bone-In USDA Prime Ribeye brushed with Garlic-Herb Butter ($125 / 36 oz.) and Steak & Lobster Oscar with Bearnaise Sauce ($59). Available at Northbrook, Naperville, Reston, Rosemont, Schaumburg, Chicago Wacker Place.
  • State Street only: Steak & Lobster Oscar with Bearnaise Sauce ($59).
  • Seasonal cocktail Holiday Bliss: Grey Goose Vodka, Passoa Passion Fruit Liqueur, Cranberry juice, Lemon Juice, Topped with Prosecco $17.

-Baptiste & Bottle 

Will be offering a special Christmas Eve dinner and menu with a Christmas Day brunch the following morning/afternoon. 

Christmas Eve Dinner:

  • Special 3 Course Dinner + a limited “a la carte” menu

  • Cocktail Cart and wine pairings will be available

  • Price: $63.00 (++)

Christmas Day Brunch:

  • Christmas Day Brunch Buffet, Dec. 25th, 11am – 2pm

  • Reservations:

  • Adults $69, Children (4 – 10 years old) $33 and under 4 complimentary.

  • Buffet will include cream cheese cinnamon rolls for the table, Roasted Short Rib, Stuffed French Toast with apples, bourbon and pecans, Omelette station, Smoked Gouda Potatoes, brunch classics, Raspberry Cheesecake, Mini Apple Crumb Tarts, and more!

-Mastro's (520 N Dearborn St) 

Will be open on Christmas Eve from 3pm - 10pm and Christmas Day from 3pm - 9pm. The regular menu will be available with specials including: Chateaubriand, which is a A large center-cut roast of the finest beef tenderloin that Mastro’s has to offer and is best cooked medium rare to medium and is extremely tender and juicy. It is sliced and served tableside by your server, and served with Béarnaise Sauce and Peppercorn Sauce on the side. $115

Special Pumpkin Butter Cake: Mastro’s signature warm butter cake with the addition of real pumpkin and seasonal hard spices. Topped and baked with pumpkin pie spiced cream cheese and finished with caramelized raw sugar. Served with vanilla ice cream, caramel sauce, and homemade whipped cream.

-Christmas Eve & Christmas Day Dinner at Roka Akor - Old Orchard
December 24th from 11:30AM - 10PM
December 25th from 4PM - 9PM
Tasting Menu: $75 per person 
A la Carte Menu Available

The tasting menu features three courses plus dessert. Enjoy White Miso Soup with Wakame and White Mushrooms, a Sashimi Chef Selection of Three Kinds, Lamb Cutlets with Korean Spices, Smoked Eggplant Miso and Cucumber, and more.

-Christmas Eve Dinner at Roka Akor - Oak Brook
December 24th from 11:30AM - 9PM
Tasting Menu: $78 per person (2 people min.)
A la Carte Menu Available.

The tasting menu features three courses plus dessert. Enjoy Wagyu Beef and Kimchi Dumplings, Sake Steamed Mussels with Ginger, Shallot, Mushroom Butter, Prime Rib Eye with Wafu Dressing, Warm Chocolate Cake, and more. 

-Christmas Eve Dinner at Roka Akor - River North
December 24th from 5PM - 11PM
Tasting Menu: $78 per person (2 people min.)
A la Carte Menu Available.

The tasting menu features three courses plus dessert. Enjoy Toro Tartare with Osetra Caviar, Quail Egg and Taro Chips, Hamachi Serrano Maki, Yuzu Miso Marinated Black Cod with Pickled Red Onions, Warm Chocolate Cake with Coffee Ice Cream and Caramelized Peanuts.

-the Albert (228 E Ontario St) 

Has unveiled their special prix fixe menu for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Curated by Executive Chef Larry Feldmeier, formerly of Sixteen, the menu is available for $85 a person with the option of a $45 wine pairing. To kick off the menu, starter options such as Sweet Potato Salad with goat gouda, baby kale, & blackberry,  Grand Board, and Celery Root Soup will be offered to enjoy. Mains include Whole Roasted Chicken with truffle stuffing and gravy, Pomme PureeRoasted Brussel Sprouts with Nueske’s bacon, and Housemade Bread with cultured butter. Guests looking to satisfy their sweet tooth can pick from an assortment of holiday pies and sorbets created by Executive Pastry Chef Vanarin Kuch, former contestant on Top Chef Just Desserts and Chopped.


Christmas Day Specials 

  • Tuesday, December 25 at 8 p.m.
  • $2 to $3 drink specials

aliveOne will be closed on Christmas Eve and open at 8 p.m. on Christmas Day. Guests can enjoy a holiday nightcap with $2 domestics, and $2 and $3 select craft drafts and cans.

-Caffe Umbria 

Christmas Hours and New Winter Drinks

  • Monday, December 24

Chicagoans can warm up on Christmas Eve with Caffè Umbria's new winter drinks. The Logan Square café will open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and the River North café will open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Both locations will be closed on Christmas Day.

Guests can sip the Panettone Latte ($4 to $4.75), an innovative latte inspired by the Italian holiday sweet bread featuring espresso, steamed milk and Panettone Syrup with flavors of vanilla and candied orange. Another great option is Caffè Umbria's Nitro al Panettone ($4.75, 12-ounce), a nitro cold brew with a holiday twist, laced with rich flavors of the classic Panettone--vanilla, almond and candied fruit, and an orange twist.


Christmas Eve Lunch and Christmas Day Specials

  • Monday, December 24 (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) and Tuesday, December 25 (5 p.m. to close)
  • $3 to $12 food and drink specials

Commonwealth Tavern will open on Christmas Eve from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Christmas Day from 5 p.m. to close (the kitchen will be closed on Christmas Day).

Guests will enjoy a family-friendly brunch on Christmas Eve, Monday, December 24 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. In addition to a $3 Build-Your-Own Mimosa Bar and $6 Build-Your-Own Bloody Mary Bar, Commonwealth will offer a Gingerbread French Toast ($12) featuring brioche dipped in a sweet ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg-based batter, then fried and topped with a whipped cream Christmas tree.

-Easy Bar

Christmas Day Beer Specials 

  • Tuesday, December 25
  • $2 to $3 beer specials

Easy Bar invites Chicagoans who stick around for the holidays to enjoy $2 and $3 select beers from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Christmas Day.

-Joy District and Parlay at Joy District 

Matzo Bash 2018

  • Monday, December 24
  • $10 to $20

Joy District and Parlay will host Chicago's only Christmas Eve gala, the official Matzo Bash 2018, on Monday, December 24 at 9 p.m. Tickets include a private hosted cocktail reception and light appetizers from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m., Chicago's best DJs spinning top 40, mash-ups and throwback hits, giveaways, complimentary admission to the after party at LIQR Box and more.

A portion of proceeds will benefit Young Leadership Division of JUF (YLD), JCC 20's & 30's, Shorashim, BBYO, OY! Chicago, Emanuel Congregation, FIDF, Moishe House & Reboot. For tickets, visit


Christmas Night Party 

  • Tuesday, December 25
  • $2 to $3 select beers; $8 beer and a shot combo

For those looking for a break from family festivities, Remedy Bar in Bucktown will open late on Christmas Day from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. Specials will include a Miller High Life bottle and Evan Williams shot for only $8 along with $2 and $3 select beers.

-The Owl

Christmas Day Drinks 

  • Tuesday, December 25
  • $2 to $3 beer specials

For Chicagoans looking for some post-holiday relief, The Owl in Logan Square will open from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. on Christmas Day with some late-night specials like $2 and $3 select beers.

-Weber Grill

Christmas Eve Platters To-Go and Christmas Day Dining 

  • Platters ($19.95 to $225.95) available for pick-up on Monday, December 24
  • Open regular hours on Christmas Day, Tuesday, December 25

For patrons hosting the holidays at home, Weber Grill can handle the cooking with their Christmas Eve Platters To-Go. Perfect for eight to ten guests, customers can choose from a variety of platters priced a la carte featuring appetizers like Weber's Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail ($36 per dozen) and Artichoke and Spinach Dip served with grilled pita ($32), and sides including Bourbon Baked Beans ($19.95), Grill Roasted Brussels Sprouts ($26.95), Cornbread with Maple Bourbon Butter ($16.95) and more. For the main course, Weber Grill will offer holiday meats including Hickory Smoked Prime Rib (boneless prime rib of beef, au jus and creamy horseradish sauce, cooked medium rare; $225.95) and a Whole Bone-In Spiral Cut Ham with bourbon glaze ($99.95).

Platter pick-up will be available between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Christmas Eve or during regular business hours on Sunday, December 23 (customer will receive reheating instructions). Orders must be placed by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, December 19. To place an order, call (312) 467-9696. For the complete Holiday Platter menu, visit

Weber Grill Restaurant in River North will also be open regular hours on Christmas Day serving their regular menu of fire-grilled meats, fish, veggies and more.

Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago
Photo Courtesy of Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago


-Repeal Day at MONEYGUN

Pay tribute to your good ol’ constitutional right to have a cocktail on the 85th anniversary of Repeal Day at MONEYGUN. Head to the West Loop bar that specializes in classic drinks and kick back with an 85 cent Temple Rye Old Fashioned in honor of the special day. For one hour only between 8 - 9 p.m. on Wednesday, December 5 raise a glass and celebrate the end of Prohibition with this special offering.

-First Friday Series Holiday Market Edition at Revival Food Hall

It’s time to get in the holiday spirit! Revival Food Hall teams up with The Hatchery Chicago, the non-profit food and beverage incubator dedicated to helping local entrepreneurs build & grow successful businesses, for a holiday market edition of First Fridays. On December 7 from 5 p.m. - 9 p.m., the market will feature local vendors such as ElbyJuicy Luzy SangriaKolossos Greek Olive OilMera BitesModerne BeveragesNiloofar Persian Trail MixPixie Dust SaltsSafina Ice CreamTomato Bliss, and WowChow offering an assortment of homemade snacks like chocolate rice pockets, trail mixes, ice cream, olive oils and hand-cured cooking salts. Get creative this year for holidays gifts with these homemade items for those hard to shop for folks on your list!

-Drinking and Decorating at The Ruin Daily

Gather your friends and get ready for the holidays at The Ruin Daily every Tuesday from November 27 through December 18 at 5 p.m. Put that artistic creativity to the test and enjoy decorating gingerbread men and sipping on The Ruin Daily’s tasty cocktails. The best part: you get to eat the final product! All supplies and ingredients are provided to make the perfect gingerbread man or woman.

-Reindeer Room Holiday Takeover and Holiday Market Pop-Up at Tack Room

This holiday season Tack Room, the equestrian themed cocktail bar located inside of Pilsen’s Thalia Hall, is opening its carriage house to welcome Santa’s reindeer. From November 30 through Christmas, Tack Room will transform into the Reindeer Room, a winter wonderland decked from head-to-toe in sparkling lights, ornaments and more. Guests can enjoy festive sips named after Santa’s reindeer — Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and Rudolph — and every Friday night resident piano maestro, S. Joel Norman, will be there with jolly holiday tunes to sing along to. 

On Sunday, December 9th from 12 - 5 p.m., enjoy a shopping experience with local Pilsen businesses and vendors like MestizaChi Boys and more. From locally sourced gifts like sugary treats and holiday souvenirs to goodies like jewelry, artwork and more, the Tack Room Holiday Market Pop-up will be sure to get you in the holiday giving spirit.

-Holiday Tree Lot and View's at Lou's Holiday Month at Saint Lou's Assembly

Instead of leaving the comfort of the city to get your Christmas trees and wreaths, head to Saint Lou’s Assembly on Black Friday, November 23rd, as they transform the backyard patio into a holiday tree lot for the season. Celebrate the launch of the Holiday Tree lot in true festive fashion with cookie decorating and a make-your-own hot cocoa bar, as well as additional seasonal brunch specials. For added festive flair, Saint Lou’s has scheduled a visit from Santa himself. The Holiday Tree Lot will be up and running until Dec. 24, weekdays from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and weekends from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

One of the best parts of winter is heading inside, cozying up and putting on a good movie. What makes it even better is when the movie is one of your favorite holiday flicks. Head to Saint Lou’s Assembly, every week in December at 8 p.m. for Views at Lou’s: Holiday Edition. Starting on December 3rd, Saint Lou’s will be kicking off the movie series with “Friday After Next” with a special guest appearance from bartender Ariel Neal of Causing a Stir. Continuing throughout the month, enjoy all the classics like “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” (December 10th),  “A Christmas Story” (December 17th), and concluding with the rom-com “Love Actually” on December 23rd.

 -Z Bar at The Peninsula Hotel (108 E. Superior St.)

The rooftop destination for cocktails and cuisine at The Peninsula Chicago invites guests to don their ugliest crewnecks, V-necks and cardigans for the first annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Party, 8:00 pm to 2:00 am on Friday, Dec. 14.

 Z Bar’s team, wearing their finest ugly sweaters, will preside over a contest to determine the best ugly sweater of the evening. The grand prize: dinner for two in The Lobby or the Chocolate Bar experience.

Throughout the evening, guests will enjoy themed cocktails and a live set by DJ and producer Karsten Sollors.

Guests are encouraged to bring donations a new or gently used children’s book for the book drive to benefit the Chicago Public Library Foundation. There is no cover charge for the evening.

For more information on Z Bar’s Ugly Christmas Sweater Party, call 312.573.6888 or visit

In addition, warm up by the fireside inside Z Bar or on the terrace by the firepit with a blanket with a glass of their hot mulled wine. Mulled wine is also the focus of the festive December Wanderlust class, which will run open house-style from 3:00 to 7:00 pm on Sunday, Dec. 23. Guests will sample Z Bar’s version of the warm spiced drink, craft their own and assemble a take-home satchel of spices to last the season for $25 per person. Or indulge in the Peppermint Stinger-topped with a candy cane, this minty cocktail changes colors when you give it a twirl, featuring C&K Immature Brandy, Creme de Menthe Glaciale and silver sparkle. 

-Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel (221 N. Columbus Dr.) 

Santa will stop by for Brunch With Santa, Saturday, Dec. 15, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. In addition to a brunch buffet, festivities in the Atlantic Ballroom will include a petting zoo, choo-choo train rides, a hot chocolate bar and photos with Santa. $50 for adults, $20 for kids. Visit

-The Dearborn (145 N. Dearborn St.) 

Pastry Chef Julianna Westgor will unveil a gingerbread house display at on Wednesday, Dec. 5. Enjoy her team’s handiwork—and order your holiday pie: Bourbon Pecan, Brown Sugar Pumpkin, Dutch Apple or Key Lime ($35). Order through Jan. 2, in person or by phone, 312.384.1242; 48 hours notice required. While you are there, sip on the Banane au Chocolat cocktail: a warm, caffeinated mix that will have you thinking of a beach in Costa Rica... Giffard banane du bresil liqueur, Godiva milk chocolate and coffee, topped with whipped cream and a banana chip. If the crowds at Christkindlmarket are too much, head across the street for the Dearborn's elevated version of Gluhwein: Hot mulled red wine with Christian Brother’s brandy, ruby porto, clove, star anise, cinnamon, dried apricot, all-spice, raisins, lemon and orange ($13).

-Forum 55 (55 E. Monroe St.) and Pork & Mindy’s (1623 N. Milwaukee Ave.) 

Looking to give back this season? Forum 55 and Pork & Mindy's are holding Toys For Tots drives. Guests who donate at Pork & Mindy’s will receive one free order of Tots.

-Wow Bao 

Throughout the holiday season, participating Chicago locations are inviting both Chicago residents and visitors alike to stop in and donate new, unwrapped toys to their official Marine Toys for Tots drop box, available November 26 through December 13. In exchange for their donation, Wow Bao will be offering each participant a free meal. This offer is available with up to $10 value. In order to redeem, guests must present their toy to the cashier or tech concierge at one of the participating locations.

-theWit Hotel 

This holiday season, Executive Pastry Chef, Toni Roberts, is offering her exclusive holiday sweets available for purchase at theWit’s Winter Wonder Pop-Up Shop, beginning December 1. Chef Robert’s holiday lobby display this year is an Edible Ice-Skating Holiday Gingerbread Village, atop a six-foot table, featuring theWit Hotel and its outlets: State and Lake Chicago Tavern, ROOF on theWit, Spa@theWit, and the Winter Pop-Up Shop. The gingerbread display will have a few items available for purchase such as Peanut Butter Penguins and Passion Fruit Coconut Polar Bears, along with other confections including Get Lit! Hazelnut Holiday Lights, Peppermint Mocha Macarons, and more. The packaged treats can be found at theWit’s Winter Wonder Pop-Up Shop, open daily from 9am to 9pm, or online at Guests are able to check out and pick up their orders at theWit Hotel, 201 N. State Street.

Chef Roberts’ array of seasonal treats features holiday barks, macarons, cookies, brittle to indulge in, gift and decorate the dinner table. Guests may choose from items such as Toasted S’more Bark ($18)spiced graham crackers with toasted marshmallows in a creamy and rich Valrhona Tanariva milk chocolate topped with apple wood sea salt for a fireside taste; Peppermint Stick Bark ($18)dark semi-sweet and milky-white chocolates with a touch of peppermint layered together and sprinkled generously with peppermint stick; and Get Lit! Hazelnut Holiday Lights ($20)brightly colored bulbs filled with creamy hazelnut gianduja, crunchy toasted hazelnuts and rice crisps. Available in a set of six for $22, theWit’s signature gluten-free macarons take on a holiday twist with Peppermint Mocha Macarons, a white chocolate drizzled shell with crushed peppermint and dark chocolate peppermint ganache with a hint of coffee filling, and Gingerbread Macarons, with a milk chocolate gingerbread man and spiced ganache filling made with molasses, ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and clove.

The Edible Ice-Skating Holiday Gingerbread Village made with gingerbread, house rice crispy treats, chocolate, macarons, and sugar work is decorated with Peanut Butter Penguins ($10) donning a dark chocolate coat and creamy peanut butter filling; and individually hand carved and molded Passion Fruit Coconut Polar Bears ($15) with Valrhona Passionfruit Inspiration chocolate, a fluffy coconut coat and fruit chew scarf. These characters join meringue snowmen in the ice-skating scene displayed in the hotel lobby and are available for purchase at the Winter Wonder Pop-Up Shop.

Those looking to warm up this winter can opt for the house made State and Lake Chicago Tavern Hot Chocolate Mix & Marshmallow Snowman ($15)a blend of premium Valrhona dark and milk chocolates, cocoa, heavy cream powder, sugar, and a hint of cinnamon, topped with a marshmallow snowman. The mix may also be paired with Peppermint Swirl Marshmallows, fluffy, cloud-like marshmallows whipped up in-house and flavored with peppermint, Hot Buttered Rum Marshmallows, with sugar, dark rum, orange zest, vanilla bean, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, and Spiced Pine Marshmallows, with Zirbenz Pine Liquer made from the Arolla Stone Pine in the Austrian Alps, accented with a hint of lemon zest and ginger, for $8.

Holiday classics include Lemon Crinkles ($10), chewy cookies made with bright and refreshing lemon juice and zest; Pistachio Brittle ($18), a caramelized brittle with a chock full of green pistachios; Cherry Crunch Rochers ($6), with dried sour cherries, cocoa nibs, and crisp wafer cookies coated in rich dark chocolate; and Brownie Bulbs ($15), a set of six dense, fudgy brownie bits coated in double crisp shells of chocolates available in two flavors, coconut almond and strawberry crunch.

All online orders must be picked up at theWit Hotel at 201 N. State Street, Chicago, IL 60601 and need 24 hours to process. Orders will be available for pick-up between 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. on the date requested. Last minute shoppers looking to purchase these items in less than 24 hours may do so by checking out at the Winter Pop-Up Shop. For additional questions, contact

-Replay Lincoln Park (2833 N. Sheffield) 

Party Planning Committees assemble! Tis the season of holiday office parties and Replay is bringing back its fan favorite pop up so that everyone can celebrate with their favorite coworkers at Dunder Mifflin. Beginning Friday, November 30 at 7 p.m., Replay will host themed events and parties throughout the month culminating in “The Ultimatum”, Replay’s ‘The Office’ themed New Year’s Eve bash. Guests will be able to enjoy special, themed cocktails and an open bar from 7 p.m. – 11 p.m.

Replay will also offer themed parties all month long including the following:

·         Thursday, December 6 – Tuesday, December 12: Classy Christmas

·         Friday, December 7 from 3 p.m. – 9 p.m., Ugly Sweater Christmas Party

·         Wednesday, December 13 – Wednesday, December 19: Moroccan Christmas

·         Thursday, December 20 – Thursday, December 27: Dwight Christmas

·         Monday, December 31: “The Ultimatum” New Year’s Eve Celebration

The pop up will offer photo opportunities galore, and the chance to interact with classic moments from the show – the stapler cast in Jell-O might even make an appearance! Fun trivia nights will be hosted for true buffs, and every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, fans are invited to party at “Café Disco” with DJs beginning at 9 p.m. in the main room – which for the purposes of this pop up will transform into the Michael Scott Paper Company.

Replay offers guests over 60 free vintage arcade games, including pinball, air hockey and more. They also have skeeball and billiards. With no cover or tokens needed, Replay invites guests for great fun 5 p.m. – 2 a.m. Monday – Thursday, Friday 3 p.m. – 2 a.m., 12 p.m. – 3 a.m. Saturday, and 12 p.m. – 2 a.m. Sunday.

For more information or to reserve tickets to select events, please visit, call (773) 665-5660, or follow Replay on Facebook,Instagram, or Twitter.

Z Bar Brunch Jess Paro Irish Coffee 2
Photo Courtesy of Z Bar



Has a new holiday cocktail that can be enjoyed during their Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's or New Year's Day services. Holiday Cheer is a festive mix of Tito's Vodka, Kerrigold Irish Cream, Kahlua, Licor 43 and garnished with a cinnamon, sugar and graham cracker rim will debut 12/1 for $22 and will be offered through January. 

-The Promontory

With the Chicago weather getting bitterly cold faster than expected, head to Hyde Park and sip on one of The Promontory’s new winter cocktails. A recent 2019 Jean Banchet nominee for Best Neighborhood Restaurant, the venue’s creative drinks feature pumpkin seed milk, fig and thyme gin and pimento drams, to keep your bones warm throughout the chilliest time of year. Highlights from the menu include: 

  • Pumpkin Chai: Starting with the light, nutty flavors of a house made pumpkin seed milk, the Pumpkin Chai mixes the bright buttery flavors of the Brugal Añejo Superior Rum with the deep, chocolatey flavors of Blackwell Jamaican rum. Chai syrup is then added, rounding out the cocktail with its bold, spicy flavor. 
  • Figment In Thyme: If you’re not sure whether you’d like to sip on a sweet or savory cocktail, look no further than the Figment In Thyme, which features the herbal Letherbee fig and thyme gin combined with the spiciness of the pimento dram bitters. Lemon, simple syrup and egg whites are blended in giving the sip a rich, creamy texture with a beautiful and foamy cap garnished with a sprig of thyme. 

-Stan’s Donuts & Coffee 

Rolls out three festive donuts, available through Dec. 31: Peppermint Bark Old Fashioned ($2.75), Gingerbread Stan ($2.75) and the croissant-donut Egg Nog Le Stan ($4.99). Stan’s holiday drinks include Peppermint Bark Hot Chocolate, Peppermint Bark Mocha, Gingerbread Chai and Egg Nog Latte.

-The Loyalist (177 N. Ada St) 

Lead Bartender Kirill Kuznetsoff mixes up holiday cocktails from an updated Hot Toddy (Bourbon, Fermented Pine Honey, Strega, Scotch and Lemon $12) to a seasonal eggnog with a twist (Based on an Italian classic cocktail, The Loyalist's eggnog uses the Italian spirit Vov, an egg-yolk liqueur common in the Italian Alps, mixed with rum, hot milk and vanilla foam with cocoa powder and nutmeg).

-Pork & Mindy’s 

Gingerbread ‘Nado ($6) blends vanilla ice cream, gingerbread cookies and caramel sauce. It’s topped with sprinkles, gumdrops and a gingerbread man, and available at the Bucktown and Wells St. Market stores through December. At Bucktown, 1623 N. Milwaukee, guests who eat their way through 12 Days of Sangwiches, December 12th through the 24th, can enter a raffle for free catering for 25.

-The Talbott Hotel (20 E. Delaware St.) 

Every Saturday in December atguests young and old can indulge in a build-your-own Hot Chocolate Station in the lobby, decked out with whipped cream, syrups, candies and, for the adults, boozy add-ins. $6 for kids, $10 for adults.

-Gemini (2075 N. Lincoln Ave.) 

Will offer a two-course, prix-fixe menu ($36) in conjunction with ZooLights at Lincoln Park Zoo, capped off with a warm beverage and cookies to go. Warm up after your visit with hot apple cider, mixed with Hamilton's rum and a cinnamon sugar rim ($11) or a boozy hot chocolate with with Bailey’s, Godiva chocolate and Grey Goose Vanilla ($12). 

-urbanbelly (1400 W. Randolph St. and 1542 N. Damen Ave.) 

Is serving up a hearty December special: Pork & Cilantro Dumpling Ramen with Egg, Pickled Onion and Pork Broth ($13). On the side of a bowl of hot ramen or coconut curry pho, try the frozen Eggnog Shake-Up, a refreshingly boozy combo of bourbon, rum, brandy, nutmeg and cinnamon, garnished with peppermint dust ($8).

-Acanto Restaurant + Wine Bar (18 S. Michigan, 312-578-0763) 

An Italian holiday tradition usually reserved for Christmas Eve can be found earlier in the week with the “Feast of the Seven Fishes” specials occurring from December 16-24. The feast is also known as “The Vigil” (or fasting day), as Italians abstain from eating red meat until Christmas Day and instead, eat an abundance of seafood leading up to the holiday.

Chef Chris Gawronski has prepared seven dishes all with a different fish varietal that culminates with the classic Zuppa dei sette pesci soup. Chef Chris offers, “The beauty of the feast is all the different fishes featured during the week neatly come together on the final day in a hearty stew that offers an authentic taste of this Italian tradition”. 

Highlights of the menu include grilled Spanish sardines that come courtesy of a market in Holland; clams and mussels cooked to order stuffed in ravioli that offers a true punch of the ocean; a spicy swordfish puttanesca dish; grilled lobster paired with a sweet passito wine sauce; and the Pulpo a la Siciliana, a popular Sicilian street cart snack turned gourmet with confit potato and meyer lemon.  The “Feast of the Seven Fishes” specials include the following:

December 16:  Grilled Spanish Sardines | breadcrumbs, salmoriglio, roasted artichoke, $15 

December 17:  Baccalà | smoked tomato, castelvetrano olives, sorrel, $14

December 18:  Venus clams and mussels ravioli | garlic confit, herbs, laurel espuma, $26

December 19:  Swordfish puttanesca | roasted swordfish, sauce puttanesca, gnocchetti, $34

December 20:  Pulpo a la siciliana | grilled octopus, confit potato, meyer lemon, chili-pepper, $17 

December 21:  Grilled lobster | passito wine, lobster sauce

December 22 (available through December 24):  Zuppa dei sette pesci | served for two, $48

If you can’t join for the beginning of the feast, the Zuppa dei sette pesci soup will be available from Saturday, December 22 through Christmas Eve.

-RA Sushi Bar & Restaurant

RA Sushi Bar & Restaurant's holiday cocktails are now available and guests can enjoy: Clouds Over Tokyo, Pineapple Crush Punch Bowl and Passion Volcano until 1/23/19. Perfect for pregaming before that annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Party, meeting coworkers before the office holiday party or just trying to escape the relatives for a few hours, these merry & bright cocktails are perfect for celebrating.

Photo Courtesy of Stan's Donuts & Coffee

Local Stocking Stuffers

-Korean BBQ: Master Your Grill in Seven Sauces, urbanbelly chef Bill Kim’s debut cookbook, perfect for the homecook looking to get out of their comfort zone ($28). Buy it at urbanbelly, 1400 W. Randolph and 1542 N. Damen Ave. 

-Dearborn Gin, a collaboration between The Dearborn Tavern and North Shore Distillery. Buy a bottle at the distillery or enjoy it in a house cocktail at the restaurant (145 N. Dearborn St.) 

-Holiday Wine Four-Packs—all white ($45), all red ($70) or an assortment ($55)—at The Press Room, 1134 W. Washington, hand-selected by sommelier Anton Valkov to pair with traditional holiday dishes. Order and pick up through Dec. 31 at the restaurant, 331.240.1914.

-Gift Cards: Buy a $100 card for Michael Jordan’s Restaurant, get a $25 dining voucher, good for Jan. 1 through March 31. Buy a $50 Stan’s Donuts & Coffee card, get a half-dozen glazed donuts.


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