Around Chicago: Highball Lounge

As I mentioned in my Instagram Roundup, May 2012 was filled with firsts. My first peonies and our first trips to check out a couple of restaurants/bars that have been on our list for a while now. At the top of the list was Highball Lounge. It opened up last December (I think) and I read about it in Time Out and have been wanting to go ever since. But winter makes me not want to go outside so it took until the weather finally turned summerish for us to hit up this little bar.

Ok so then, we walked in and aside from a rambunctious crowd towards the front, the place was completely empty. I figured it would be somewhat empty since my friends and I had planned to meet at 8:30. I was totally surprised that when we left at around 10:30 (don't judge, people had to work the next morning), it was still empty.

But don't let the deserted atmosphere deter you. This place is my new love. I would move in if I could.

First off, let's take decor. I read somewhere that this place is like if your classy grandpa had a basement in the 1960s. That's what sold me on it in the beginning and it lived up to my expectations. Manly tufted booths line one wall and high top tables and stools line the opposite wall. At the far front are two sets of couches and armchairs and floor to ceiling windows overlooking the streets. Ahh. If I could change my entire home to a bar, this would be it.

Ok next, drinks. The waiter handed me an extensive (and a bit expensive) menu and came back three times before I was ready to order. So many quality options. This place is making a name for itself on cocktails (selling point number two. This girl does not like beer). When I finally settled on one (and then two...), I was quite pleased. Adrian tried the punch and that was what I'd expected, too: fruity, punchy and 1960s fab. Later in the evening, the bartender came over with free shots because he was bored. Apparently these particular shots won second place in a contest in London and with good reason. I'm not a shot taker, but I enjoyed these. I have no idea what it was called but it tasted like a mini mixed drink. And it was free. Sold.

Music was excellent as well. IPod hooked up to dj equipment with the perfect mix at the perfect volume. I didn't have to shout to have a conversation but I could still enjoy the musical selections. Love that.

Downside? Slightly creepy 1960s slow-mo movies projected on the wall, understandable only under the influence of some heavy drugs. Being that I'm not one for drugs, it was mostly incomprehensible to me. But quirky. And you know I enjoy me some quirky.

So yes, Adrian and I will be back. With more friends. And possibly a birthday party. Because we need this place to stay in business. I adore it.

Congrats, Highball Lounge. You are Oh Hello, Love approved.
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