Coyote Run Golf Course’s 18-hole course stretches across 6,478 yards of bentgrass fairways and greens, all manicured to country-club standards, hemmed by pristine waterways and native wetlands. A lighted driving range with both bluegrass and artificial hitting areas hosts practice sessions and pre-round pep talks to nervous 9-irons before players take to the first tee, where shaky swings may succumb to the pressure of an immediate forced carry. Rippling waters loom ominously on 11 holes, placing a high premium on course management, shrewd club selection, and bags that double as flotation devices. A coterie of 54 sand traps peppers the emerald landscape, further complicating course play as clubbers snatch pars and evade bogeys. Alongside the picturesque par 71 rests a three-hole practice course, where aspiring aces will likely find one of Coyote Run’s ace instructors divulging golf wisdom in a variety of lessons.
Coyote Run’s fully stocked pro shop sells apparel and equipment from the game’s top brands, and the onsite Wiley's Grill, open year-round, hosts post-round revelry with a social bar, as well as a newly appointed lodge with a 30-foot fireplace nestled under a rustic, timber ceiling. Golf-simulator sessions enable players to partake in rounds on famous golf courses throughout the year. An outdoor patio provides a sweeping view of the course and a keen vantage point for taking in sunsets.
Course at a Glance:
Some traits are hereditary: hair color, height, even color-blindness. Aguamiel founder Sylvia Xim?enez inherited something else: a passion for Mexican cooking. As a 3rd-generation restauranteur, she got her start when she was just 14 years old, working in the bustling environs of her family's Santa Fe Restaurant. During her years in the industry, she cultivated a sense of culinary adventurousness, finding ways to bring out each dish's inherent complexity. Xim?enez also relied on her precise attention to detail to make sure that every customer left the table counting the days until they could come back. It's these qualities that earned her attention from the ABC7's "Hungry Hound" Steve Dolinsky, and earned her a place on The ? Beat's list of up-and-coming Latin entrepreneurs. It's these qualities that diners experience every time they enter Aguamiel's door.
In order to help fulfill her vision, Xim?enez hired chefs that shared her own passion for authentic (but inventive) Mexican cuisine. The chefs at Aguamiel pack a pretty hefty resume. Executive chef Enrique ?Kike? Gomez spent decades as a teaching chef for Rick Bayless at Frontera Grill, and young-gun sous chef Fernando Manriquez topped the ranks of his culinary school at just 18 years of age. Together, the pair share an understanding of old and new, valuing both scratch-made preparations with traditional ingredients and the exciting possibilities of newer techniques such as molecular gastronomy. This shines through in their dishes; diners might opt for cazuela??roasted chayote, potatoes, and zucchini in pascal sauce. They could also sample ceviche made with ocean-fresh albacore tuna, or seared pork belly paired with mashed sweet potatoes.
No matter the order, dishes from Aguamiel's kitchen pair well with drinks from the well-stocked bar. Not content to simply follow the same old script, Aguamiel's mixologists have crafted a full menu of cocktails that you won't find at the average Mexican restaurant. The Rubia Bonita mingles Patron Silver with bitter orange liqueur, simple syrup, and lime juice before introducing a refreshing combination of fresh strawberries and cilantro leaves. Classicists find refuge, too; the bar also sports an extensive menu of traditional margarita preparations, as well as non-alcoholic agua fresca.
Open for 25 years and celebrated by AM670 The Score, the Southland Star, and Patch.com, the items on the Durbin’s menu vary by location, but all of its kitchens prepare hearty sandwiches, pizzas, and barbecue. Wood embers infuse ribs and chicken with smoky flavors as USDA Black Angus steaks are plated alongside sautéed mushrooms and homemade coleslaw. Fresh donut holes are also made in-house and stacked on ice cream sundaes topped with a single red cherry that resembles the setting sun resting on a pillow of vanilla-flavored clouds.
Before opening Mid Oak Distillery, Matt Altman studied ancient Russian methods of vodka production. These studies inspired Altman to christen his vodka "CD" after "Catherine's Dynasty," translated from the original Russian Catalina Dynastii, which refers to the reign of Catherine the Great. At Mid Oak Distillery, Altman reprises the royal recipe with local ingredients: Illinois grains, Glenview bottles, and tags from Oak Forest. Distillers cork the bottles by hand, seal them with heat, and adorn their necks with tags that denote alcohol content and recent immunizations. Altman even chose to have local contractors build the tasting room. Within its recently expanded 3,000-square-foot space, Mid Oak Distillery serves up vodka drinks made from a lineup of traditional, seasonal, and flavored varieties of meticulously crafted CD Vodka.
Sullivan's Irish Pub & Eatery, a bastion of Irish culture in Chicago's South Side, is a time-honored destination for traditional Irish food and cold craft beer. Servers sling plates of corned beef and cabbage, shepherd's pie, and other comforting classics, as well as boxtys?commonly known as Irish-style potato pancakes. Burgers, wings, and draft beer from Irish breweries such as Guinness and Smithwicks round out the menu. In addition to the hearty food and drink, the pub houses a stage for live music, while an outdoor bar stays open all four seasons for open-air sipping and plate Frisbee.
Every Monday night, The Blarney Stone opens its doors to a very special group of people—the geeks. Their weekly hosted trivia night, lovingly called "Geeks Who Drink," allows eggheads and trivia buffs of all walks of life to come together and test their wits as they feast on Irish classics such as the shepherd’s pie and halibut and chips. Meanwhile, cozied up to the bar or tucked behind a table, those who hide their geekiness under a bushel basket can mutter the answers under their breath while nursing an expertly poured pint of Guinness or tearing into one of the pub’s many flavorful burgers. In addition to the trivia night, patrons can satisfy their need for competition with NFL broadcasts and an accompanying football breakfast, a big-screen hookup to a Nintendo Wii, and paired pool tables and dart boards.