Summer’s over, school’s begun, and you’re back in town. The question of the hour, obviously, is where to eat? While you were at the lake/camp/family reunion or generally off having fun elsewhere, your must-try list of new restaurants has grown. Allow me to break it down for you.
441 N. Clark St., Chicago
It’s been a long time since Lettuce Entertain You opened a tapas bar (33 years and going strong for Café Ba Ba Reeba!), but this River North newbie is really more of a deluxe wine bar with a pintxo menu created by LEYE chefs Doug Psaltis and Hisanobu Osaka as a mashup of Spanish and Japanese flavors. Heavy-hitting sommeliers Richard Hanauer and Ryan Arnold have curated the wine list, and it’s a stunner. As for décor, natural woods, dark brick, and lots of warm lighting in various forms give this space an intimate feel. Stop by after work for the Spicy Clam Ceviche, Pan Con Tomate, and a glass of bright vedura from Conde de Valdemar.