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Places to work while drinking / eating

Places to work while drinking / eating
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  • Post #31 - May 6th, 2009, 8:12 am
    Post #31 - May 6th, 2009, 8:12 am Post #31 - May 6th, 2009, 8:12 am
    stevez wrote:I've got to meet with a client tomorrow somewhere near the Hancock Building. Does anyone have a recommendation for a place near there where we can do a little work? If not, I'll probably pick her up and drive to Swim Cafe, though I'd prefer to go somewhere closer to the Hancock.

    First thought was Argo Tea at Pearson and Rush. Tempo Cafe at State and Chestnut is another idea, but I don't know if they have wi-fi or if that's a requirement. Feast is also now open at Rush and Delaware.

    Argo Tea
    819 N Rush

    Tempo Cafe
    6 E. Chestnut

    Feast
    25 E. Delaware
    -Mary
  • Post #32 - May 6th, 2009, 8:42 am
    Post #32 - May 6th, 2009, 8:42 am Post #32 - May 6th, 2009, 8:42 am
    stevez wrote:I've got to meet with a client tomorrow somewhere near the Hancock Building. Does anyone have a recommendation for a place near there where we can do a little work? If not, I'll probably pick her up and drive to Swim Cafe, though I'd prefer to go somewhere closer to the Hancock.


    You're in Starbucks country around there. You could always go to the people-watching headquarters of the Gold Coast -- the infamous Starbucks on Rush -- or you could not go and just say you did.

    Also around there is Ing Direct Cafe, which has free wifi -- a lot of laptoppers work from there. Beware, there's lots of TVs, usually tuned into the financial reports.

    Ing Direct cafe
    21 E Chestnut
    Chicago, IL 60611
    (312) 981-1236

    Starbucks
    (Rush & Oak)
    932 N Rush St
    Chicago, IL 60611
    (312) 951-5436
  • Post #33 - May 15th, 2009, 8:54 am
    Post #33 - May 15th, 2009, 8:54 am Post #33 - May 15th, 2009, 8:54 am
    Swim Cafe should probably have its own thread by now, but I thought I'd throw this in here since there have been numerous references. I don't think anyone has mentioned this yet, but Swim is now open until 10pm Tuesday through Saturday and is BYOB after 6pm. So, it could be a much more fun place to work. :wink:
  • Post #34 - May 15th, 2009, 9:02 am
    Post #34 - May 15th, 2009, 9:02 am Post #34 - May 15th, 2009, 9:02 am
    stevez wrote:I've got to meet with a client tomorrow somewhere near the Hancock Building. Does anyone have a recommendation for a place near there where we can do a little work? If not, I'll probably pick her up and drive to Swim Cafe, though I'd prefer to go somewhere closer to the Hancock.


    I didn't catch Steve's query in time, but for future reference, I've also found Sarah's Candies on Oak conducive to reading and meeting with people (they don't have wi-fi as far as I know). It's usually quiet, they have several tables and, while the space is small, it feels pretty airy and gets some nice natural light. They serve Intelligentsia, and some of their pastries are pretty good. I stick to the iced cookies and the black and white cupcake.

    Sarah's Candies
    70 E. Oak St.
    Chicago, IL 60611
    312-664-6223
    http://www.sarahscandies.com/
  • Post #35 - July 14th, 2009, 7:49 pm
    Post #35 - July 14th, 2009, 7:49 pm Post #35 - July 14th, 2009, 7:49 pm
    cilantro wrote:
    ChgoMike wrote:Cafe Ambrosia - Evanston (only in the mornings, afternoons too bustling with Northwestern students)

    As of today, Cafe Ambrosia is no more.

    And now open in the same space: Enigma Cafe.

    It's a mystery.
  • Post #36 - July 14th, 2009, 10:25 pm
    Post #36 - July 14th, 2009, 10:25 pm Post #36 - July 14th, 2009, 10:25 pm
    happy_stomach wrote:
    stevez wrote:I've got to meet with a client tomorrow somewhere near the Hancock Building. Does anyone have a recommendation for a place near there where we can do a little work? If not, I'll probably pick her up and drive to Swim Cafe, though I'd prefer to go somewhere closer to the Hancock.


    I didn't catch Steve's query in time, but for future reference, I've also found Sarah's Candies on Oak conducive to reading and meeting with people (they don't have wi-fi as far as I know). It's usually quiet, they have several tables and, while the space is small, it feels pretty airy and gets some nice natural light. They serve Intelligentsia, and some of their pastries are pretty good. I stick to the iced cookies and the black and white cupcake.

    Sarah's Candies
    70 E. Oak St.
    Chicago, IL 60611
    312-664-6223
    http://www.sarahscandies.com/


    Argo on Pearson @ Rush. Just around the corner from the Hancock.
    819 N Rush St
    Chicago, IL 60611
    (312) 951-5302
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #37 - July 17th, 2009, 6:18 am
    Post #37 - July 17th, 2009, 6:18 am Post #37 - July 17th, 2009, 6:18 am
    I too work in a home office, and need to get out of the house more but still get work done. I don't need a place to meet with clients.I don't mind the ambience of a Starbucks or other coffee places, but I don't drink coffee. And I'm not a breakfast eater. And I live farther north than the OP. Does anyone have any suggestions for places in the north burbs to get a table, a lunch or snack, and a drink, and get some work done in the afternoon?
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #38 - July 17th, 2009, 6:54 am
    Post #38 - July 17th, 2009, 6:54 am Post #38 - July 17th, 2009, 6:54 am
    LTH,

    I been pleased with Mercury Cafe, huge, as in cavernous, bohemian/60's vibe, none of the furniture matches, food, simple sandwiches, pastry, coffee, is ~fine~, but it's quiet, comfortable, bathrooms are clean, has quick/free WiFi and one can really spread out.

    Lovely Bakery is a bit Wicker Park meets Martha Stewart for me, but free WiFi, sandwiches, soups and tasty pastries, though I've stuck with the toasted bagel they bring in from NY Bagel & Bialy on Touhy. Friendly, if slightly hipper than thou staff, and comfortable. The one problem I've encountered they seem to transition the style and volume of the music around noon, at which point I leave.

    Enjoy,
    Gary

    Mercury Cafe
    1505 W Chicago Ave
    Chicago, IL 60642
    312-455-9922
    http://www.chimercurycafe.com

    Lovely Bake Shop
    1130 N. Milwaukee Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60622
    773-572-4766
    http://www.lovelybakeshop.com

    New York Bagel & Bialy Corp
    4714 W Touhy Ave
    Lincolnwood, IL 60712
    847-677-9388
    One minute to Wapner.
    Raymond Babbitt

    Low & Slow
  • Post #39 - July 17th, 2009, 8:19 pm
    Post #39 - July 17th, 2009, 8:19 pm Post #39 - July 17th, 2009, 8:19 pm
    G Wiv wrote:Lovely Bakery is a bit Wicker Park meets Martha Stewart for me, but free WiFi, sandwiches, soups and tasty pastries, though I've stuck with the toasted bagel they bring in from NY Bagel & Bialy on Touhy.


    Right on. I was struggling to describe Lovely to someone the other day, and I think you get it just right. It's an OK place though sometimes to me it feels like a hipster boutique of kitchenware that happens to sell pastries. I'd probably got there a little more often to work if Swim Cafe weren't so close to me. What I like most about Lovely is that I can work there in the morning and walk to La Pasadita for lunch. :D
  • Post #40 - August 6th, 2009, 7:07 am
    Post #40 - August 6th, 2009, 7:07 am Post #40 - August 6th, 2009, 7:07 am
    Years ago, in a different thread I can't remember the name of, I fulminated about the laptoppers who take up seats in coffee shops while never ordering anything, while people who actually want to give the coffee shop money can't find a place to sit. Now it seems that coffee shops in NY have rethunk things:

    No More Perks: Coffee Shops Pull the Plug on Laptop Users

    (By the way, I've mellowed on long laptop use in places that charge for wi-fi. I figure if I'm paying Borders $7.95 for the privilege of connecting to the web, I am a paying customer, whether I'm drinking a coffee in my chair or not.)
  • Post #41 - August 6th, 2009, 9:11 am
    Post #41 - August 6th, 2009, 9:11 am Post #41 - August 6th, 2009, 9:11 am
    Just thought I would mention, the coolest place I have found with free wi-fi is the Heartland Cafe outpost at Loyola Beach. I always wanted an office with a Lake Michigan view.
  • Post #42 - August 6th, 2009, 11:31 am
    Post #42 - August 6th, 2009, 11:31 am Post #42 - August 6th, 2009, 11:31 am
    riddlemay wrote:Years ago, in a different thread I can't remember the name of, I fulminated about the laptoppers who take up seats in coffee shops while never ordering anything, while people who actually want to give the coffee shop money can't find a place to sit. Now it seems that coffee shops in NY have rethunk things:

    No More Perks: Coffee Shops Pull the Plug on Laptop Users

    (By the way, I've mellowed on long laptop use in places that charge for wi-fi. I figure if I'm paying Borders $7.95 for the privilege of connecting to the web, I am a paying customer, whether I'm drinking a coffee in my chair or not.)


    At Lovely, and for a while now (unless it's since been changed, I haven't been in months), they took away all the power from the seating area outlets. While there was a note explaining that they wanted to encourage guests to play boardgames and talk to one another, I suspect there was also the issue of people camping seats (who can blame them? free refills of good coffee, generally satisfying pastries and great soups).

    If you don't mind a bar area, Goose Island has free wi-fi (though it seems slow to me) and seems to have plenty of available seats in the afternoons. The Map Room also bills itself as a coffee house in the morning with free wi-fi (from their website: We open early every morning for coffee, latte, and freshly baked pastries from Bennison's Bakery. Monday-Friday starting at 6:30 am, Saturday at 7:30 am, and Sundays at 11 am.), though every time I make it there, it's in the early evening and well past beer o'clock.

    Goose Island
    1800 North Clybourn
    312.915.0071

    The Map Room
    1949 N. Hoyne
    773.252.7636
    best,
    dan
  • Post #43 - May 12th, 2010, 7:11 pm
    Post #43 - May 12th, 2010, 7:11 pm Post #43 - May 12th, 2010, 7:11 pm
    Recently a series of outages and inconveniently spaced appointments had me doing the itinerant wifi worker thing. So I report:

    Not at all cool, and you need good battery life (outlets tend to be few and far between), but McDonald's are often pretty good workspaces (better than Starbucks, anyway). Except at prime mealtimes, they tend to be quiet (avoid those with large kiddie play areas). The coffee is cheaper than Starbucks, too, and the cold drinks often have free refills.

    If you need wifi late at night, tollway oases have it (but it's slow).
  • Post #44 - September 25th, 2010, 5:04 pm
    Post #44 - September 25th, 2010, 5:04 pm Post #44 - September 25th, 2010, 5:04 pm
    Hi- I ran across this article concerning Starbuck's when I was checking my email, and this looked like the best place to put it. http://finance.yahoo.com/family-home/article/110809/secrets-starbucks-doesnt-want-you-to-know

    The article goes into tips on how to plug into the wifi there for an extended period of time, without wearing out your welcome. Tips mentioned were to visit the same Starbuck's all the time, and leave a tip when you pickup your order. You should then ask for a refill every couple of hours, and leave a tip each time. You should also try to avoid camping out for hours in the most comfortable chairs.

    They also give you a tip on how to order a "poor mans" latte. The trick is to order an espresso and ice, but have them put it in a large cup, and then go over to the beverage station, and fill it up the rest of the way with milk or cream. Apparently approximately one customer per hour shows up at Starbucks asking for this combination. Hope this helps, Nancy
  • Post #45 - September 26th, 2010, 11:07 pm
    Post #45 - September 26th, 2010, 11:07 pm Post #45 - September 26th, 2010, 11:07 pm
    I checked out Cassava today, potentially a good space for eating and working: spacious (though only four tables), free wi-fi and not early but decent hours. I forgot to check the power outlet situation. Baked goods made from tuber flour may not be for everyone, but as someone who dreams of mochi shops (or anything else) taking over cupcakes in this town, cassava snacks are moving us in the right direction. I liked what I ate.

    Cassava
    3338 N. Clark St.
    Chicago, IL 60601
    773-857-3039
    Mon-Thu: 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
    Fri-Sat: 10:00 am – 10:00 pm
    Sun: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm
  • Post #46 - September 28th, 2010, 6:40 pm
    Post #46 - September 28th, 2010, 6:40 pm Post #46 - September 28th, 2010, 6:40 pm
    cilantro wrote:
    cilantro wrote:
    ChgoMike wrote:Cafe Ambrosia - Evanston (only in the mornings, afternoons too bustling with Northwestern students)

    As of today, Cafe Ambrosia is no more.

    And now open in the same space: Enigma Cafe.

    It's a mystery.

    Aaand closed again, as of several months ago. Apparently, keeping a large space open for three people who buy a coffee in the morning and then sit there for hours is not a viable business model.

    However, one block south in the former location of the Italian Coffee Bar, a place called something like The Other Brother Coffee House has either opened or is about to open. It appears to be a second location of The Brothers K.
  • Post #47 - December 27th, 2010, 11:23 am
    Post #47 - December 27th, 2010, 11:23 am Post #47 - December 27th, 2010, 11:23 am
    Bridgeport Coffee is my new favorite place to work:

    - Lots of natural light
    - Mixed crowd (but not crowded)
    - Quiet but not hushed
    - Space between tables
    - Fast, unlimited wi-fi
    - Outlets
    - Excellent loose tea selection (for this non-coffee drinker)
    - My two non-tea essentials, Martinelli's apple juice (though in plastic) and San Pellegrino (in glass)
    - Chicken soup is decent today
    - Ed's Potsticker House is just down the street
    - If you're really productive and work all day, you can reward yourself with a drink or two directly across the street at Maria's (by "you" I mean "me")

    Bridgeport Coffee House
    3101 South Morgan
    Chicago, IL 60608
    773-247-9950
    http://www.bridgeportcoffeecompany.com/
  • Post #48 - December 27th, 2010, 2:54 pm
    Post #48 - December 27th, 2010, 2:54 pm Post #48 - December 27th, 2010, 2:54 pm
    Very sad that Pickacup in Evanston on Dempster closed at some point, not sure when. I hadn't gone there in awhile; I've been more office-based than I was previously.

    Cafe Ennui on Sheridan in Rogers Park (Lunt??) used to be my favorite place when I worked in the neighborhood, pre-computer. They used to have excellent scones, I don't know if they still do.
  • Post #49 - December 27th, 2010, 3:09 pm
    Post #49 - December 27th, 2010, 3:09 pm Post #49 - December 27th, 2010, 3:09 pm
    Judy H wrote:...
    Cafe Ennui on Sheridan in Rogers Park (Lunt??) used to be my favorite place when I worked in the neighborhood, pre-computer. They used to have excellent scones, I don't know if they still do.

    Cafe Ennui has closed.
    -Mary
  • Post #50 - December 28th, 2010, 10:30 pm
    Post #50 - December 28th, 2010, 10:30 pm Post #50 - December 28th, 2010, 10:30 pm
    happy_stomach wrote:Bridgeport Coffee is my new favorite place to work:

    Bridgeport Coffee House just got bumped today by Star Lounge. While BCH totally charmed me yesterday, it is two not-insignificant bus rides away (or a bus, el and bus), not at all realistic for a typical work week. Star Lounge is just blocks from my home, and the setting just speaks to me on a more fundamental level. It feels much more like a neighborhood bar than what is generally regarded as a "cafe" in these parts, with people actually working on their laptops and iPads at the bar itself. Again, I'm not a coffee drinker, but if I am going to be in a coffee shop, I do care that the people who work there are passionate about coffee, which seems to be very much the case here. For me, Star has something like two dozen loose teas, any combination of which the barista today offered to blend for me. I've never been given this option at a cafe without asking. And I ran into LTHers. Star Lounge is going to be my office-away-from-my-office-office and -away-from-my-home-office. (Maybe I should work less.)

    Star Lounge Cafe
    2521 W Chicago Ave
    Chicago, IL 60622-4516
    773-384-7827
    http://www.starloungecoffee.com
  • Post #51 - December 29th, 2010, 2:49 pm
    Post #51 - December 29th, 2010, 2:49 pm Post #51 - December 29th, 2010, 2:49 pm
    I frequently work at Iguana cafe. Good simple cafe food, good coffee, and wine by the glass. In the late afternoon, you are almost guaranteed to see people with laptops and a glass of wine.

    Iguana Cafe

    Iguana Cafe
    519 N. Halsted St.
    Chicago, IL 60622
    (312) 432-0663
  • Post #52 - January 2nd, 2011, 1:51 pm
    Post #52 - January 2nd, 2011, 1:51 pm Post #52 - January 2nd, 2011, 1:51 pm
    redhanded in the Noble Tree Coffee & Tea thread wrote:My other recommendation would be Ipsento on Western (near Armitage). It's not nearly as big as Noble Tree, but they have the same homey atmosphere and they roast their own beans.
    I worked at Ipsento this morning and liked it OK. For this non-coffee drinker, they serve Rishi teas and baked goods from Labriola in addition to their house sandwiches. I like to work in airy environments, so I found Ipsento somewhat cramped, even sitting at the front window. The back room seems like it would be nice for meeting a friend and conversation but too intimate for work and even too closed off with not enough light for me to just sit and read. The people were very nice though.

    Ipsento Coffee
    2035 N. Western Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60647-7249
    773-904-8177
    http://www.ipsento.com/

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