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This gnarly artisanal spot in Wicker Park specializes in handmade mozzarella, fresh-baked breads, house-roasted meats, and seasonal sandwiches. Chow down on the summer patio or cozy up amid exposed brick when the weather is — quite literally — not so hot.
Birchwood Kitchen, 2211 West North Avenue, between Leavitt Street and Bell Avenue (773-276-2100).
Nothing says holiday time like a proper sugar fest. To help you plan, we gathered cookie and cocktail recipes from notable food bloggers, along with decor and crafts to send your guests home on a sweet note.