Juggling scores of domestic and imported brands, the staff at Lincolnwood Wines & Spirits presents patrons with an exciting display of more than 1,000 hand-picked wines, premium spirits, and fine cigars. Shoppers can stock their cellars with the creamy, un-oaked Rietvallei chardonnay ($9.99) or Mother Zin, a zinfandel named for its creator's mom and how she loved to curse ($13.99). Create a special drink with North Shore's Chicago-made vodka ($33.99) by mixing it with nothing else and serving it in a Ming vase. Safely stowed inside a walk-in humidor, esteemed cigars such as Romeo y Julieta Reserva Real ($7.99), Acid Kuba Kuba ($6.99), and Cohiba Robusto ($13.99) eagerly wait to be taken into loving homes, guillotined, and set on fire.
iFixCellPhone's technology experts restore wireless devices to near-new condition. The smartphone savants deploy a special adhesive process to fully seal fresh glass onto iPhones, preventing dust from sneaking underneath the screen through the sides, power button, or wireless network. Alternatively, scroll through a comprehensive roster of other repairs for iPhones and Blackberries. Venerable iPhone 2Gs get extra mileage from diagnostic services by cyber sleuths ($30) or camera replacement ($75). Trackball ($25–$30) and keyboard ($40–$60) repairs for Blackberries help fingers to fly as fast as the exigencies of live-blogging an auctioneering contest require.
As night falls on the corner of Lawrence and Central in Jefferson Park, Central Kitchen and Tap's towering sign blazes to life with a neon invitation to "stop in" and shining arrows helpfully pointing the way. The vintage-inspired fixture wouldn't look out of place beside a roadside eatery from the 1950s, and it perfectly conveys the restaurant's spirit before diners even step through the front doors. Central Kitchen and Tap manages to walk a fine line between two ambiances by combining the counter service and charming booths of a casual diner with the full bar and assorted televisions of a neighborhood pub.
The family-friendly tavern welcomes everyone and this is readily apparent in the menu of American classics, which also includes the occasional international treat. Roasted chicken, slow-cooked ribs, and grilled pork chops seem directly inspired by home-style recipes. However, the selection also features dishes such as saffron-tinged Spanish rice with grilled shrimp and a traditional pasta bolognese with braised beef marinara. In between bites of comfort food from home and abroad, diners can also enjoy a refreshing pint of beer or a glass of wine.
A large chalkboard hangs over the central bar and counter section, laying out the entire menu in neat handwriting. Small black-and-white photographs line the walls beside the slate-blue booths, although the televisions also keep guests' attention by playing various sports broadcasts. For the children or the young at heart, the diner features a couple of arcade games that allow patrons to pass the time in exchange for a few quarters.
Marc Hauser has captured the portraits of numerous celebrities during his illustrious career, including Michael Jordan, Woody Allen, Sophia Loren, Julia Roberts, Dennis Rodman, and recently Lollapalooza musicians. Although sessions with Hauser usually start around $1,200, this philanthropically-oriented Groupon covers up to five corporeal beings, whether they be children, adults, pets, or eldritch whisperers from the outer regions, all without dishing out the kind of dough with which celebrities bake. There is an additional charge per extra person, pet, or cardboard standup of Yoda. Following the shoot, you will receive one high-quality, 8"x10" fine art print of the portrait to hang on the wall, spam message boards on the internet, or staple over the actual face represented in the picture. Extra prints will be available for purchase.
Celebrating their 25th anniversary in the end of October, the hop gurus at Brew and Grow educate burgeoning beer makers on the art of crafting cold ones via hands-on introductory courses. During 2.5-hour classes, duos learn the ins and outs of the brewing process, including basic terminology, equipment, and the differences between ales, lagers, and root beer. Pupils will sip various suds while learning about ideal ingredient combinations, then concoct customized barley pops. Though they can't immediately take class creations home, participants will be able to return to the brewery in approximately one month or after malted barley has passed its fermentation exam to tap and taste their personalized potables. At the end of the session, students will be able take home a choice of two comprehensive home brewing guides, either How To Brew by John Palmer or Radical Brewing by Chicago author Randy Mosher.