Shopping Archive



September 2014



The Best of Lakeview

Written by , Posted in Chicago, Restaurants, Shopping

Today is a bittersweet day. Mike and I are packing up our lives and leaving behind the first condo we bought together 3 years ago. We’ve had some great times in this condo and Lakeview and the Southport Corridor have treated us well. We’re not moving very far, only to Lincoln Park, but it’s a move nonetheless. We’ve had some pretty epic get togethers with friends and family that I’m sure our neighbors remember well; our kitchen counter as seen a lot of butter and phyllo on our Greek cooking days and a lot of smoked meat and fireball whiskey when our friends get together. We also got engaged and then married while living here, so although we’re excited for things to come, it’s still a little bit sad thinking of all the memories we’re leaving behind. So rather than leaving them all behind, I’m going to keep a few alive here and also give you my version of The Complete Guide to Lakeview – all the places we love in our first Chicago ‘hood! If there’s anywhere I’m forgetting, make sure to add it to the comments below!


Champagne on closing day, May 2011

Butter, Phyllo

All the butter and phyllo (and mimosas) necessary for Greek cooking day


The pit master

Bjork, Swan Costume

Halloween party, 2013

Ugly Sweater Party

Ugly Sweater Party, 2012


Best Pizza

Best Deep Dish – The Art of Pizza 3033 N. Ashland Ave.    I’ve written about The Art before. Not only is it the best deep dish in Lakeview, it’s my pick for the best in the city.  

Best Thin CrustMichael’s 4091 N. Broadway St.    Ok, so Michael’s is technically in Uptown, but they deliver to Lakeview so I’m counting it because I love it. They’ve perfected the ratio of crust:cheese:sauce and I love that the sauce has some sweetness to it – sausage and giardiniera are my go-to toppings.

Best Late NightDimo’s  3463 N. Clark St.    There is not much better than a slice of Dimo’s Mac ‘n Cheese or BBQ Chicken Bacon Ranch pizza after a night on the town. Leftovers the morning after are an added bonus.

Best FastBlaze 953 W. Belmont Ave.   Recently opened and immediately popular. Their assembly-line style pizzas that are ready to eat in 180 seconds are as delicious as they are convenient. Don’t forget a glass of Blood Orange Lemonade and a S’more Pie.

Honorable MentionD’agostino’s 1351 W. Addison St.   A close runner-up to Michael’s for my favorite thin crust. Their super thin and crispy crust and sauce with a subtle sweetness always satisfies.

The Art of Pizza, Chicago, Deep Dish

Deep Dish from The Art of Pizza


Best Beauty

Best FacialAbsolute Precision Skin Care 1421 W. Belmont Ave. Kelly and Kimberly are the only ladies I trust with my pores!

Best Hair – Jane Roberts Salon 1404 W. Belmont Ave.  Samantha is my girl, and until I leave Chicago I’ll be making the trip back to see her at Jane Roberts.

Best NailsSpa Spot 3125 N. Lincoln Ave. Not all nail salons are created equal. Heat packs for your shoulders, paraffin wax, and a quickie shoulder massage are all included in a pedicure here.

Best Finishing Salon – Goldplaited 2803 N. Sheffield Ave. For all your blow-out and makeup application needs, sisters Mal & Co have created the perfect destination, complete with complimentary champagne.

Retro hair and make-up by Goldplaited

Retro waves and make-up by Goldplaited


Best Shopping

M2 3527 N. Southport Ave. For all your accessory needs, there is no better place than M2. Looking for a cute, inexpensive necklace to go with that outfit you want to wear tonight? M2 has you covered!

Blue Mercury 3512 N. Southport Ave.  Beauty lovers heaven! With great brands like Kiehl’s, NARS, Bobbi Brown, and many others, you’ll have no problem finding an excuse to fish out your wallet here.

Inkling 2917 1/2 N. Broadway St.  Cute, unique gifts with a little touch of Chicago.

Waxman Candles 3044 N. Lincoln Ave.  In case you weren’t sure, you’ll find a whole lotta candles here.

With Grace 1914 W. Cornelia Ave. Paper, paper, paper, and more super cute paper.

Spencer’s Jolly Posh 3755 N. Southport Ave.  For the British and Irish lovers out there – try the bangers, bring home some tea.

Two-sided/Foursided 2958 N. Clark St. and 2939 N. Broadway St.  If you’re looking to have something framed (four-sided) or find a unique greeting card or gift, these sister stores have you covered.


Best Sweets

Jeni’s Spendid Ice Cream 3404 N. Southport Ave. When Jeni’s opened on Southport last fall I knew I was in trouble. Their Salted Caramel and Black Coffee flavors are straight-up addicting, don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Scooter’s Frozen Custard 1658 W. Belmont Ave. A waffle cone with a scoop of chocolate and a scoop of vanilla from Scooter’s is probably my favorite frozen treat, ever. What can I say, I’m a sucker for frozen custard.

Bobtail Ice Cream 2951 N. Broadway St. Gotta show some love for East Lakeview ice cream as well. Bobtail’s Cubby Crunch is my go-to.

Bittersweet 1114 W. Belmont Ave. Beautiful pastries line the display cases in Bittersweet and they’re almost too pretty to eat….almost.


Best Bars

Higgins’ Tavern 3259 N. Racine Ave. Neighborhood dives are my jam, and Higgins is an all-time favorite. This is our version of Cheers, where everyone knows your name.

The Green Lady 3328 N. Lincoln Ave. If you’re looking for an impressive line-up of craft beers, look no further than The Green Lady. Darts, a jukebox, and a laid-back atmosphere make this the perfect spot for a relaxed night out.

Guthrie’s 1300 W. Addison St. Board games! A great spot to chill out and entertain your competitive spirit.

Delilah’s 2771 N. Lincoln Ave. Dark and awesome, the perfect spot for the whiskey lover in your life. Rumor is Courtney Love and Kurt Cobain met here…

Headquarters Beercade 2833 N. Sheffield Ave. Craft cocktails + free old-school arcade games, need I say more?

Northdown Cafe & Taproom 3244 N. Lincoln Ave. Great food and great beers made Northdown a regular stop for us. Lots of vegan choices for all the veggies out there.



Ukai 1059 W. Belmont Ave. Not only is Ukai our go-to sushi spot in the ‘hood, it’s our go-to sushi spot in Chicago. The Crunchy Spicy Tuna, Godzilla, Hawks, and Bears rolls are our favs.

Tango Sur 3763 N. Southport Ave. MEAT! Lots of delicious meat and an intimate atmosphere put Tango Sur at the top of our list for special nights out. The Pork Chop, El Filet, or Lomo Relleno are my tried and true favorites.

Big & Little’s 1034 W. Belmont Ave. A very welcome new addition to the neighborhood – quick and delicious tacos, truffle fries, po’ boys, and more.


Best Brunch

Southport Grocery 3552 N. Southport Ave. Don’t think about it – just order the Bread Pudding Pancakes. You’re welcome.

Harmony Grill 3159 N. Southport Ave. This little restaurant is attached to Schuba’s and is probably our most frequently visited brunch spot. Nice little outdoor patio and the food never disappoints. 2 thumbs up for their Bloody Mary as well.

Ann Sather 909 W. Belmont Ave. The most magnificent (and giant) cinnamon rolls you will ever eat.

Endgrain 1851 W. Addison A cute and very popular spot for brunch – their buttery biscuits are Oh, and did I mention they have some ridiculous doughnuts??

Bacon Doughnut, Endgrain, Chicago

Endgrain’s Bacon Butterscotch doughnut


Best Caffeine Fix

Heritage Bicycles 2959 N. Lincoln Ave. A coffee shop that doubles as a bike shop. A super cute spot to camp out, grab an iced coffee, and get a little work done. Make sure to treat yourself to one of their Snickerdoodle cookies.

Osmium 1117 W. Belmont Ave. This Dark Matter outpost just opened and is conveniently located on my way to the Red Line, so it has quickly become my go-to for a quick caffeine fix. Love their iced coffee and Mayan Mocha.

DAVIDsTEA 3530 N. Southport Ave. Tea seems to be the new “it” hot drink these days and DAVIDsTEA is my favorite.

Cafe Tola 3612 N. Southport Ave. You’ll find coffee and empanadas at this teeny tiny spot just north of Addison. Order a Spicy Mocha if you like a little heat with your chocolate and caffeine.


Best Workouts

Corepower Yoga 3232 N. Lincoln Ave. One of several Corepower studios in the city, their Hot Power Fusion class leaves me sweaty and in touch with my Om.

Body R+D 2940 N. Lincoln Ave. This megaformer workout is the best way to get serious about toning up. A couple days after a workout at Body R+D you’ll be feeling muscles that you never knew were there.

Crossfit Defined 1235 W. Belmont Ave. If you’re ready to step up your workout game a notch, Crossfit Defined will have you pushing your limits in no time.


Best Al Fresco Drinking and Dining

Crosby’s Kitchen 3455 N. Southport Ave. Family friendly with a nice little patio primed for people watching along Southport. Not in the mood to make dinner? I carryout the Wrightwood Salad pretty often.

Fish Bar  2956 N. Southport Ave. A small space that packs a memorable punch. Order the Lobster Roll if you’re looking to splurge, if not the Satchmo Po’ Boy is the perfect stand-in.

Sheffield’s 3258 N. Sheffield Ave. Sheffield’s has BBQ and a patio that is always hoppin’, and a great beer list to boot.

Schoolyard Tavern 3258 N. Southport Ave.  If Summer Shandy is in season, then it’s on tap at Schoolyard – and that’s why we love this place. Well, that and their delicious Queso.

Frasca Pizzeria + Wine Bar 3358 N. Paulina St.  An all-around winner that never disappoints. Great wine, great pizzas, and don’t miss the bruschetta.

Frasca, Chicago, Bruschetta

An assortment of bruschetta from Frasca


Best of the Rest

Best MexicanEl Mariachi 3906 N. Broadway St. 

Best Wings Crisp 2940 N. Broadway St.  Seoul Sassy all the way!

Best SoupSoupbox 2943 N. Broadway St. Their delicious soups got me through the Worst Winter Ever. The Lobster Bisque is sure to cure any winter woes.

Best Vegan The Chicago Diner 3411 N. Halsted St. 

Best Date Night HB Home Bistro 3404 N. Halsted St. 

Best Girls’ Night Bottle & Bottega 2900 N. Lincoln Ave. Wine & painting, pure genius.

Best Thai – Pho’s Thai 3332 N. Lincoln Ave.  No frills at this tiny hole-in-the-wall, but their Pad Thai is some of the best. (Also BYOB)

Best Burgers DMK Burger Bar 2954 N. Sheffield Ave. 

Best Fast Burgers Burger Boss 3208 N. Southport Ave. 

Best Brewery DryHop 3155 N. Broadway St. 

Best Fried Chicken Sandwich The Roost 1467 W. Irving Park Rd.  They started out as just a food truck and finally opened this brick and mortar earlier this year. The Spicy Chicken Sandwich on a biscuit (with pickles and chipotle sauce) is insanely good, and they also open at 9am for breakfast!

Best Sandwiches Panes Bread Cafe 3002 N. Sheffield Ave. 

Best Gyros Gyros On The Spit 2826 N. Lincoln Ave. 

Best Meat Market Paulina Meat Market 3501 N. Lincoln Ave.  You’ve never had jerky like Paulina’s homemade jerky – go for the cajun. Their pepper-crusted smoked pork tenderloin is also always a huge hit at parties.

Best Greek Melanthios 3114 N. Broadway St. 

Best Karaoke Trader Todd’s 3216 N. Sheffield Ave.  Anywhere that has “Nuthin’ But A G Thang” on their list of karaoke songs is a winner in my book. Their tiki theme makes it that much more interesting.

Best Lobster Roll New England Seafood Company 3341 N. Lincoln Ave. 

Best Hot Dogs Murphy’s Red Hots 1211 W. Belmont Ave.  Do not, I repeat do NOT order ketchup on your hotdog! (Only kind of kidding- they won’t say anything, but people will judge)

Best Chiropractor Aligned Modern Health 3514 N. Southport Ave.  Dr. Dever and team keep my aches and pains at bay, Aligned is so much more than your typical crack-and-go chiro.


What are your Lakeview favorites?? Share below in the comments!!




April 2014



DAVIDsTEA Spring Collection Giveaway!

Written by , Posted in Giveaway, Shopping

A little over a year ago Mike and I were taking a stroll up Southport with our chocolate lab, Ruby, when we came across the newly opened DAVIDsTEA. I told Mike I wanted to pop in really quickly to grab a cup of tea so he and Ruby hung out on the bench outside. Fast forward 30 minutes and I’m still inside, smelling the 10 different teas that the lovely woman working behind the counter set out for me, and ogling all the super cute tea cups and accessories lining the walls. After a “what the heck are you doing in there” text I wrapped up my visit, but I knew that I was officially hooked on tea and would definitely be back for more!

Since this first visit I’ve been back to DAVIDsTEA many times, both for myself and to buy gifts for others. Their extensive wall of teas can be a bit intimidating at first glance, but all the staff are super friendly and will help you find the perfect tea. DAVIDsTEA always has great gift sets that are beautifully packaged and cute mugs to go along with the season, so it’s really a no-brainer gift option if you know someone who enjoys tea. Some of my favorites are Cream of Earl Grey, The Spice Is Right, Cold 911, and Mother’s Little Helper, but every time I stop in I seem to find a new favorite!

DAVIDsTEA Southport, Chicago

DAVIDsTEA Southport interior

Last month DAVIDsTEA released The Spring Collection – five fresh and exotic teas that are fruity, refreshing, and amazing hot or cold! I’m partial to the Cool Cucumber black tea and the Blue Lagoon herbal tea, but I’d be happy sipping any one of them!

Ready for the exciting news?! DAVIDsTEA has given me a box of these fun new teas to giveaway to one lucky Lion + Maven reader! Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below by 11:59pm on May 14, 2014 for your chance to win the pretty little box below! US & Canada residents only.

DAVIDsTEA Spring Collection 2014

a Rafflecopter giveaway

DAVIDsTEA currently has 3 Chicago locations: 3530 N. Southport in Lakeview, 924 W. Armitage in Lincoln Park, and 1643 N. Damen in Wicker Park.



December 2013



Christkindlmarket Chicago

Written by , Posted in Chicago, Shopping

Last Friday Mike and I took his parents to Chicago’s Christkindlmarket for the opening weekend and it was SO much fun! Ever since I started stalking Casey’s blog I have been dying to visit the Christmas markets in Germany. BUT since that probably won’t happen in the near future I had to settle for the next best thing right here in Chicago on Daley Plaza! It was super packed but we still managed to make our way through the crowds and have a wonderful time. Next time I visit I will probably try and pick a weekday so the crowds aren’t quite so intense, but I definitely recommend scheduling a visit after dark so you can fully appreciate all the beautiful lights!

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Our first (and my most important) stop was at the Glühwein stand. Glühwein is a spiced Christmas wine from Germany that is served warm, so it’s the perfect way to warm up at the market! Supposedly the Glühwein here at Christkindlmarket is imported from Germany, so you feel just a little bit more authentic while drinking it! They serve the wine in cute little souvenir mugs but I’ve heard they usually run out of the mugs after the first week or so, so hurry up and go so you don’t miss out! They also have beer and TONS of delicious smelling food like bratwursts, pretzels, potato pancakes, and warm nuts!

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Once you’ve got your food it’s time to take in the beautiful surroundings and all the fun little shops! The giant tree in Daley Plaza is a stunner but the white lights and the candy cane roofs of the shops were my favorite piece of the scenery. If you’re in the market for ornaments, there is definitely no shortage of them here!

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

Christkindlmarket Chicago

My Christmas spirit increased exponentially after our visit to Christkindlmarket and it felt like I was able to experience a tiny piece of the German Christmas markets right here in my hometown. Visiting Germany in December is still on my bucket list but until that gets crossed off, I’ll be getting my fix right here in the windy city!

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