Cocktails, Outdoor Dining and Ping-Pong in Chicago

  • 0
  • July 06, 2016

It’s definitely Summer in Chicago. Rain or shine, there are so many fun things going on to share with you.


Earl’s Kitchen + Bar

I learned about this restaurant last August at a Food and Wine Event that I wrote about here. I had no idea that this place was going to become my “go-to” place for a bite to eat and/or cocktails on the patio. Earl’s is located in a newly developed area called New City which is bordering Lincoln Park in Chicago. In this community, you will find restaurants, a movie theater, bowling alley, grocery store, furniture store and apartments among other stores to check out. But for me, it is Earl’s fantastic food that brings me back every time.

earls drinks picm

A few weeks ago, we had the opportunity to help start the summer season off right with other media folks on Earl’s super comfortable patio complete with fire pits and umbrellas with heaters (perfect for that chill in the Fall air). From cocktails to the most delicious seafood to vegetarian options, this place just does it right. Cocktails are creative and uber flavorful….enough so that you may forget about the alcohol part!

earls food picm


Next time you are in the area or just want to have a dinner with friends where you can enjoy the summer warmth in a comfortable setting with really good food and drinks, come visit Earl’s Kitchen + Bar.

Patios Views Cocktails Rain or Shine

Hendrick’s Gin

Well, you cannot have summer cocktails without a really good gin, right? Growing up drinking GnT’s was somewhat of a tradition where I am from. I didn’t have an appreciation for top quality gin though until I spent more time in the food industry. Now, there is no going backward. I was very lucky to be invited to a private party that Hendrick’s was sponsoring in their “Whimsical Takeover of this Year’s Cucumber Season”.

hendricks vase guys picm

The event was held at the Hangover at ROOF on theWit (hotel) which is a space that you must see. The views are spectacular!

hendricks the wit picm

The event was showcasing Hendrick’s Gin cocktails expertly mixed by Fred Parent, Brand Ambassador for Hendrick’s Gin and Michael Simon, Beverage Director at theWit. From the cool punch we were welcomed with to the unique flavor combinations of the drinks, it was a seriously delicious and refreshing evening.

hendricks drinks picm

As a side note, Hendrick’s Gin is also a brand I saw at the previously mentioned Food and Wine Event last August. Here’s my photo from that experience.

hendricks gin bartender

There is nothing like a simple but top-notch gin and tonic to relax at the end of an evening. If you haven’t tried them yet, you are missing out. Cheers to a glorious summer!




In the Midwest, you never know what the weather is going to bring. The perfect reason to visit my next new find, called SPiN. In the heart of the River North area tucked next to the Hard Rock Hotel is a new gaming experience for ping-pong fans co-founded by actress, Susan Sarandon.  

spin tables picm

Once you enter the space, you see table after table just waiting for that paddle and ball to be picked up. Bonus is the opportunity to play the game on the patio table, weather permitting of course. Now, that is unique for the busy area it is located in.

spin food picm

No matter your skill level, you are welcome to play the game with friends, join tournaments, attend events or just hang out and watch the pro’s play. Add to the fun, good food and drinks and your experience is made. I can see this becoming a destination as the weather shifts from outdoor to indoor activities. Ready for a game?




  • Azlin Bloor says:

    Well Earl’s Kitchen & Bar definitely sounds like an amazing place to go and chill out with some friends. The food really looks good and those drinks are something else! I love that massive contraption thingy you’ve got!

  • Maggie branch says:

    This restaurant sounds really great! The drinks look fabulous! Chicago is such an amazing city to experience.

  • Robin Masshole Mommy says:

    I love eating outside in the summer time. I do it as much as possible.

  • This place looks amazing! I have to go there in my next trip to Chicago.

  • tp keane says:

    I’ve not heard of Earl’s before but the food and the drinks look amazing. I must see if they have a branch closer to home.

  • Amy Jones says:

    Wow what an amazing place! the food and the cocktails are something I would totally wanna try

  • Karlyn Cruz says:

    These drinks are so nice! I love your experienced, I want to go there too and have fun!

  • I think I remember my cousin mentioning this (Earls kitchen) to me once. However, since I live far from Chicago, I have never gotten a chance to try the place myself. Thank you for sharing your list of places to visit. I might be able to travel there sometime before the end of this year.

  • I love the opportunity to travel and explore a place and enjoy a good memory of food and tradition. All the food photos are so delish! I always wanted to travel but I do lack time with work.

  • Elizabeth O. says:

    Chicago really has a lot to offer when it comes to good food! I’d love to check out Earle’s should I ever find myself in Chicago one of these days! Thanks for sharing your experience!

  • There’s a lot of great find in Chicago especially when it comes to good food and having a good time with friends or family. These places sound amazing and it would be nice to try them out!

  • Pamela Kuhn says:

    Oh my, just looking at your pictures made me hungry! We have family in Chicago. I love the city, but I’m always glad to come home after a visit. I live in the middle of a cornfield!

  • Earl’s Kitchen & Bar looks like a great place to get together for friends. The pictures of the food left my mouth watering. It has been years since I have been to Chicago, I will have to look this up when I go again.

  • Tam Gamble says:

    Wow, it looks like you were spoilt for choice both with the food and the cocktails. I have to say I am not a big cocktail fan, as they are often too sweet for me, but I would happily try those ones just because they look so good.

  • Kim Smith says:

    I have never been to Chicago, but this looks amazing. I would visit this restaurant in a heartbeat. Food looks awesome!

  • Kathy says:

    That looks like a lot of fun. All the drinks and food looks amazing too! I love Chicago! I’ve been there only a couple of times but it’s really a nice place.

  • Echo says:

    Oh my goodness! How awesome do those drinks and that food look?! I think I am drooling!

  • kean raph says:

    This restaurant sounds awesome! I would love to try all their food.

  • Kathy Kenny Ngo says:

    Wonderful photos! I am sure you enjoyed a lot during your stay at Chicago. I will add this to my bucket list too.

  • Donnabeth says:

    This place looks so cool! I hope we have a place like this in our hometown.

  • Eileen Kelly says:

    I will be travelling to Chicago this winter. I must check out Earl’s This looks like a great place to eat, winter or summer. Then I will swing by Spin. Yum

  • you certainly live an amazing charmed life dont you. I love your spirit and personality. This blog is just all kinds of fantastic and your posts rock.
    I have some friends in chicago and your post with those amazing photos just make me want to book the ticket right now.

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