Restaurant Reviews: Outdoor Dining Holiday Edition

The holiday season is in full stride here in Chicago. While indoor dining is not available, there are plenty of great options to grab a bite throughout the city and partake in this special time of year’s festivities. Let’s take a look at what’s going down in some of our favorite Chicago neighborhoods as we approach Christmas.

The Loop: Head over to the LondonHouse Chicago, located at 85 East Wacker Drive on the 22nd-floor terrace, for the Rudolph’s Holiday Rooftop pop-up. Surround yourself with amazing views of the city as well as giant nutcrackers, festive lights, and holiday-themed poinsettias while enjoying delicious food and drink at this classy Loop hotel. Highlights on their holiday bites menu include crepe sushi (smoked salmon, cream cheese, tobiko), lobster mac & cheese, and grilled cheese and tomato soup, among many other options. 

Signature cocktails created just for this rooftop experience include the Ugly Sweater (Don Julio Blanco, mango, habanero, orange), the warming Sleigh Wreck (Bullet Rye, Bailey’s Apple Pie, Earl Grey, cinnamon, whipped cream), Reindeer Games (Tanqueray Gin, Arctic Berry Red Bull, blueberry, lemon), Bad Santa (Zacapa 23 Rum, Crème de Banane, Carpano Antica, toasted coconut, absinthe), and Naughty & Nice (Ketel One Peach Orange Blossom, Danica Rose, raspberry, hibiscus, lemon).

Be sure to make reservations, as seating is limited to 50 guests with a maximum of six per table. Each reservation is limited to two hours of dining service, and social distancing is a requirement. Don’t forget to dress warmly as this event runs daily until January 3rd. 

West LoopThe Press Room, located at 1134 West Washington Boulevard, is once again presenting its Miracle on Washington Street pop-up, mixing an outdoor market with food created by Chef Jeff Williams. The market features unique holiday gifts ranging from hand-crafted ornaments from local vendors to The Press Room’s wine selection, pasta kits, and cocktails to go that you can purchase.

The menu at this holiday market features schnitzel sandwiches, potato pancakes, sourdough pretzels, and Nutella waffles, among many other great eats. On the beverage side, you can’t go wrong with the spiked cider, hot toddy, old fashioned, and Christmas punch.

Tickets are $25, which reserves 90 minutes to shop through the market, a craft cocktail in a commemorative mug, and a reserved patio table to enjoy the delicious food available. The Miracle on Washington Street is open daily from 11 am to 9 pm until December 23rd.

Lincoln ParkGemini, located at 2075 North Lincoln Avenue, have their Holiday Hut up and running to help take the cold out of this holiday season. You can pick up (or have delivered) their homemade hot cocoa with individually wrapped marshmallows and whipped cream. Or, if you are looking for a bit more kick in your beverage, you can choose from cocoa, coffee (regular or decaf), or spice cider spiked with Jameson or Fireball. Seasonal cookies available include oatmeal butterscotch, holiday sprinkle, and Tish’s Special Toffee. The Gemini Holiday Hut is open Sunday through Thursday from 3 pm to 8 pm, and Friday and Saturday from 3 pm to 9 pm.