Ukrainian Village on the west side of Chicago was recently named the hottest neighborhood in the country by the online real estate brokerage Redfin. This is a title that is not undeserved. Ukrainian Village is one of the fastest growing and most exciting neighborhoods in the city, with a wide variety of food and entertainment options. Here are the top places to check out in this trendy neighborhood.
The Empty Bottle is one of Chicago’s go-to venues for the hippest music. It’s an intimate venue that provides craft beers and delicious cheap eats. It is well known in many circles for having some of the best and most fun alternative concerts in Chicago.
The Star Lounge Coffee Bar is one of the coffee shops that is a part of the Dark Matter coffee family, a hip Chicago coffee brand. However, just because it is a part of a chain, that doesn’t mean that it’s lacking in character or local vibes. Star Lounge feels like the inside of someone’s home and has funky orange walls covered with local art. In the summer, the outdoor patio is perfect for a coffee and a catch up with friends.
Homestead is an eco-friendly, clean-eating paradise. Its website describes it as ‘a literal farm-to-table restaurant’. Everything on the menu is farm-fresh and seasonal. It is located on the rooftop of the Roots Pizza restaurant and has a beautiful view of the city, with plenty of seating. This restaurant is perfect for when you want a fresh, tasty meal but you don’t feel like cooking.
Black Dog Gelato specializes in interesting, innovative, and delicious gelato and sorbet. The gelato is made every day with simple and fresh ingredients. The catch is that when Black Dog runs out, it runs out. So get to the store early for the best selection of all the delicious flavors. Make sure to try the Goat Cheese Cashew Caramel. The fun and inviting atmosphere, as well as the wonderful flavors, will have you coming back again and again.
Sure, you could buy flowers from your local Whole Foods, but where is the fun in that? Cattails is a unique flower shop that is modeled after the flower shops in major European cities. Customers are encouraged to explore the store and create their own flower arrangements, but the employees are always on hand to provide suggestions and help. Cattails has a welcoming atmosphere and reasonable prices that will make this shop a part of your weekly routine.
If you are making a trip to the village, the Ukrainian National Museum is a must-see. It is located in the heart of this historic neighborhood, and it provides wonderful context for all the beautiful architecture across the city. There are exhibits that focus on the heritage and folk art that the Ukrainian people brought to Chicago. This museum shows why it is so important to remember a neighborhood’s true roots.
Shokolad is one of the establishments in the Ukrainian Village keeping the tradition of the neighborhood alive. This café specializes in classic European pastries and makes custom desserts for any occasion. However, desserts aren’t the only thing that people love at Shokolad; they also rave about the borscht and pierogies. This cafe and bakery gives you a real taste of the Ukraine.