The building that houses Argus Brewery was once a horse stable. But not just any horse stable—the distribution stables of Chicago’s historic Joseph E. Schlitz, of Schlitz beer fame, where the Schlitz horse teams and carriages resided in the early 1900s. Today, two large terra-cotta horse heads on the building’s parapet pay homage to the building’s origins. Inside, instead of horses, there’s craft beer created by father and son and three-legged-race partners Bob and Patrick Jensen, who have worked tirelessly to perfect their sudsy creations. Along with hard work, they bring their South Side pride and attitude to making each premium craft beer, which they feel is reflected in the unique flavor, depth, and unapologetic bravado of each brew.
Clues hidden outside historic homes and institutions await two-wheeled treasure hunters as they attempt to solve the mysteries that lurk beneath the surface of Beverly and Morgan Park neighborhoods. As soon as all members manage to cram helmets over their deerstalker hats, groups depart on three-hour sleuthing expeditions that combine the fun and healthy exercise of biking with strenuous mental gymnastics. All participants must keep a weather eye on the horizon if they are to solve the mystery before sunset, as evidence lies in even the most inconspicuous nooks and crannies—from architectural details on buildings to the snow-gray whiskers of the postmaster’s moustache.
Bev Art Brewer & Winemaker Supply helps brewmasters and vintners around Chicago take their concoctions from plan to reality with wine- and-beer-making gear. Industrious hobbyists can grab their own malt extracts and carboys here, and beginners can get started with wine and beer kits. The shop also stocks brains with the skills to needed to bottle new masterpieces, hosting classes taught by brewers, winemakers, cheese-crafters, and mead-makers. The experts also contribute to some of the shop's own potions; their Wild Blossom Meadery & Winery produces barrels of honey wine made by bees who spend years squashing grapes with their tiny feet.
Ask an out-of-towner what they want to do when they visit Chicago, and they'll probably tell you they want to chow down on some deep-dish pizza. Chicago Pizza Tours owner and pizza aficionado Jonathan Porter leads parties on treks to some of the Windy City's most celebrated pizzerias with three different pie-themed tours. Guests sample Chicago's signature style with the deep-dish only holiday walking tour, enjoy slices with sides of adult beverages during pizza and cocktails outings, or visit the kitchens of four different restaurants during the original tour. Each outing takes visitors to local favorites across a wide range of styles and cuisines, from the caramelized thick crusts of Pequod's, the stuffed pies of Bacino's, or the Neapolitan-style creations of Spacca Napoli.
Recently, Jonathan Porter has teamed up with local writer and tour guide Jonathan Knotek to launch Chicago Prohibition Tours, a romp through some of Chicago's most famous speakeasies still in existence. During the 3.5-hour bus trip through the roaring '20s and beyond, guests can visit the old one-time haunts of gangsters and crooked pols, such as the Green Door Tavern or the Exchequer Restaurant and Pub, all while sipping popular cocktails from almost 100 years ago and communicating only through silent-film title cards.
The Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust is a Chicago-area nonprofit dedicated to preserving and promoting the legacy of one of the most influential architects of the modern era. Wright's Oak Park Home and Studio was built between 1889 and 1898 and served as the architect's workshop, in which he experimented with new design concepts, including the groundbreaking prairie style, as well as the lesser-known tiger style and mantis style. The Robie House, a Hyde Park Wright project designed for Chicago businessman Frederick C. Robie, is considered a Wright masterpiece and a centerpiece of modern architecture. All excursions are led by the Preservation Trust's expertly trained guides, who stand ready to impart bits of knowledge, answer tough questions, and pause for pictures with celebrity pillars and buttresses.
This tour will take you from Chicago to Gary aboard a comfortable coach bus. In Gary, you'll get to know Jackson the way his friends and neighbors knew the kid who would sing on street corners and play stickball with his family in front of their humble abode. Longtime Gary residents and Jackson friends will lead your exploration of Jackson's roots. Among many points of interest in MJ's life, you'll see: