The Top 10 Things To Do And See In West Town, Chicago

| © David Ohmer/Flickr
claire-fahey

West Town or Noble Square is a little neighborhood just in sight of Chicago’s bustling downtown. West Town is definitely unfairly overlooked, because this large and diverse area is bursting with character. If you have yet to explore this vibrant ‘hood, make sure to put it on your list.

1. Bari

Grocery Store, Grocery Store

Bari

Bari is the epitome of ‘don’t judge a book by it’s cover’. It might look like a simple Italian grocery store on the outside, but inside it is a wonderland filled with delicious fresh meats and cheeses. Many people have described Bari as having the best Italian subs in the city. If you are in the mood for a filling and casual lunch, this is the spot for you.

Bari, 1120 W Grand Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 666 0730

© Food Group/Flickr

2. Beauty Bar

Bar, Wine, Beer, Cocktails, Pub Grub, American

This is definitely one of the trendiest spots in Noble Square. Beauty Bar is a chain with other locations in places like Portland and Brooklyn. The walls are lined with old beauty supplies, keeping with the theme in the name. However, if you go there on the right day, you can actually get a manicure with a Manhattan. There is a huge dance floor surrounded by kitschy decor. Whether there is a rap battle or a dance-off happening, this is the place to go to have fun and let loose.

3. Chopin Theatre

Chopin Theatre

From its opening in 1990, Chopin Theatre has been dedicated to showing unique musical, literary, and film events. Many of their productions are based on the Eastern European immigrant experience due to the neighborhood’s origins. However, you definitely do not have to be Eastern European to enjoy the beautiful space inside the theatre and their fascinating performances.

Chopin Theatre, 1543 W Division St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 278 1500

© Connie Ma/Flickr

5. Podhalanka

Restaurant

Podhalanka

This restaurant is not for you if you are looking for some really fancy dining, but if you are looking for delicious and authentic Polish food, this is the place. Podhalanka doesn’t even have a website but we can promise you that even you can’t look at the menu beforehand, you will still be able to find something absolutely mouthwatering. The food has been described as tasting like it’s straight from Grandma’s kitchen. The perogies are large and covered with melted butter, and if you are feeling adventurous, the white borscht is a speciality.

Podhalanka, 1549 W Division St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 486-6655

Wall display at Podhalanka © Adam Jones/Flickr

6. Eckhart Park

Park

Sure, Chicago is full of neighborhood parks, but how many of them have a fantastic view of the skyline? Eckhart Park may just seem like your average park but with its excellent location, it is the perfect place to relax with some friends and a cup of coffee on a Saturday morning. This spot is a major community hub. Eckhart Park also has a pool with open swim hours so you can get a workout in before you set out to explore the rest of Noble Square.

7. Kayak Chicago

Kayak Chicago

This is an adventure that begins in Noble Square and that can take you around to some of Chicago’s most popular neighborhoods in a new way. Kayak Chicago provides professional guided tours on the expansive Chicago River. You can see amazing places and get informative historical tours all from your kayak. Be sure to return to Noble Square after you have worked up an appetite.

Kayak Chicago, 1501 N Magnolia Ave Chicago, IL, USA, +1 630 336-7245

Chicago River © David Ohmer/Flickr

8. Ada Street

Bar, Restaurant

Ada Street

This restaurant defies the idea that American food has to be boring and flavorless. Ada Street and it’s extremely friendly staff creates classic dishes like tomato soup and bread pudding with a twist. People rave about the polenta fries, donuts with caramel sauce, and the sliders. This unmarked restaurant and bar will become an instant favorite.

Ada Street, 1664 N Ada St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 697-7069

9. Charlatan

Charlatan

Treat yourself to a candlelit Italian meal, but this is not your parent’s date-night spot. Charlatan makes classic Italian dishes with trendy twists. The decor is stunning dark wood that will make you feel like you are a part of a members only club. However, this definitely doesn’t mean snotty service. There is a wonderfully enthusiastic staff serving up delicious meals. Everyone will be able to find a favorite dish from the classic meatballs to the goat cheese stuffed chicken breast.

Charlatan, 1329 W Chicago Ave Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 818-2073

10. The Hideout

Bar, American

Hideout Bar
© Serhii Chrucky / Alamy Stock Photo
The Hideout really takes its name to heart. It has an unlikely location hidden in an industrial corridor off of Elston. But this means that there is plenty of room for when lines form outside for everything from dance parties to movie screenings to live music shows. It can feel like a cozy neighborhood bar on its soup nights, or if you get to an event early. Then it can turn into a bustling popular music destination in mere minutes. Be sure to stop by in the summer to make use of their wonderful outdoor seating area with a great view.
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