Our Favorite Things to Do In Chicago

Summer is in full force in Chicago and we are enjoying every second of the sunshine and warm temps. Today’s post is kind of a follow up to my Summer City Guide from last year. A lot has changed in 12 months and there are so many new places in Chicago that have become favorites in our household. Becoming a mom has opened my eyes to so many new places that Chicago has to offer – whether that be tourist destinations, restaurants, date night ideas, where to stay, etc. Not a lot has changed in terms of favorite summer activities and hotels from this post but wanted to share some new additions… Left Coast is a new healthy spot in Lincoln Park that I am embarrassed to admit we frequent at least twice a week. Their menu is DELICIOUS, it is kid friendly, they have amazing cold brew coffee and smoothies and a mixologist who whips up a mean cocktail come 5pm (or all day should you fancy a drink). A few favorites from the menu: laguna avocado toast, acai bowl, Le Midi salad (add chicken), Santa Monica Shred, Farro and Away, D-O-Double G Wrap, the Mornin’ Buzz and Kale Mary smoothies and Charlie loves the Sunbutter and Jelly sandwich. Go!

I was reviewing my restaurant list here and it is all really good. A few more new(er) favorites are The Hampton Social (seen here, get the lobster roll!), Earls Kitchen (beautiful interiors, get the Bibimbap!) and I’ve linked the rest of my suggestions below:

Where to eat/drink:

Coffee Talk/Bakeries:
Intelligentsia
Floriole
Elaine’s Coffee Call
City Grounds
Heritage Bicycles
LPQ
Sweet Mandy B’s
Beatrix

Breakfast/Brunch:
Bang Bang Pie
Toast
Kanela Breakfast Club
Dove’s Luncheonette
Stan’s Donuts
Doughnut Vault
Beatrix
The Publican
Little Goat
Glazed and Infused
Milk & Honey Cafe
Perennial Virant
Birchwood Kitchen
Bongo Room

Lunch:
Le Colonial
Fred’s at Barneys
Doc B’s Fresh Kitchen
Beatrix
Lyfe Kitchen
Blue Door Farm Stand
LPQ
Shake Shack
Big Star
Tavern on Rush
Nico Osteria
NoMI
RL Restaurant

Dinner:
GT Fish & Oyster
Girl and the Goat
DMK
Au Cheval {be prepared for a long wait}
RPM Italian/RPM Steak
Sunda
Eataly
Burger Bar Chicago
Summer House
Stella Barra
Balena
Chop Shop
Nellcote
RM Champagne Lounge
Hot Chocolate
Gemini Bistro
North Pond
Parson’s Chicken & Fish
Green Street Smoked Meats
Pump Room
NoMI
Bavette’s
Piccolo Sogno
RL Restaurant

Drinks:
Terrace at the Trump {best views}
Big Star {tacos, margaritas, outdoor patio}
RM Champagne Lounge
Nico Osteria
J.Parker at Hotel Lincoln
Pump Room

Where I Frequent:
Del Seoul {the best korean street food}
Dunlay’s on Clark {american brunch/dinner}
Athenian Room
Homeslice
Bobtail Ice Cream
The Local Option {great food + awesome beer list}
Blue Door Farm Stand
Floriole
Le Colonial
Goddess and Grocer
Beatrix

*I should note, I am not a restaurant buff – I wish I were into all of the new and amazing restaurants that are constantly popping up around the city but I am not. My friend Jena always has the best suggestions on her insta and blog!

Charlie and I also spend our days going to Tunes with Tim at Monica + Andy (Charlie is obsessed), swinging on swings and playing at splash pads in the park (we love Fellger Park at Belmont and Southport and Adams Playground on Seminary) and walking around the Lincoln Park Zoo. Charlie is officially 9 months old and I stare at him every day and think to myself “how did I get so lucky?” Life is significantly better since I became a mom and spending my days with him are my favorite.

Are you a mom in the city? Any favorite activities? I want to sign Charlie up for a swimming class and am thinking about starting some Bubbles classes. Would love your thoughts!

What I’m wearing: IRO Jacket  //  Old Navy Maxi Dress  //  Love Always Sunnies  //  Nora Tonn Necklace (contact me for details!)  //  Herschel Backpack (our diaper bag!)  //  Marble iPhone Case

Photos by Heather Talbert.

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