Ah, brunch. That miraculous in-between meal where you’re truly free to order various foods and drinks at a time of day that would otherwise be deemed inappropriate by general society. It’s a glorious time of the weekend, and one primed for people-watching as the younger, more virile participants at other tables slosh in and hope to cure themselves of whatever pain has been inflicted upon them from the night before.
Often, though, it seems as if parents must make a difficult choice when we venture out with the family for burgers and omelets at 10 a.m.: kid-friendly or mimosa-friendly*? Go too swank (mimosa-friendly) and your lack of high chair will only be amplified by the angry sneers from the hung over 20-somethings at the next table as you ask your waiter if they have “regular” (“no, like, ‘normal’ … you know … bread … in a toaster … ”) toast. Go too kid-friendly and you’ll feel like you have the hangover by the end of the meal despite not having had a sip of alcohol the night before.
Luckily Chicago is teeming with restaurants that not only serve fantastic drinks with brunch but also happen to be kid-friendly. No more sacrificing ambience for a kids’ menu, or vice versa! We truly can have our burgers with fried eggs on top and eat them too! What a time to be alive.
Located in Roscoe Village, this Italian-inspired restaurant has one of the tastiest brunches in town. Kids are sure to enjoy delicious kid-sized pizzas, and adults can enjoy an array of delicious adult beverages or craft beers with their selection of cheese board, hashes, omelets or pizzas.
3358 N Paulina St.
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Paulina Brown Line (~250 feet)
Earls is quite possibly the tastiest Canadian import since poutine** and lucky for us it’s landed right in the North and Clybourn area of Lincoln Park. With a freshly-debuted kids menu, a ridiculously extensive bar list (for when you need a little more punch than your standard mimosa) and a brunch menu that will knock your socks off, everyone will leave with that exquisite feeling that only a delicious boozy brunch can provide.
1538 North Clybourn Avenue Unit A108
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: North/Clybourn Red Line (~475 feet)
Tuco and Blondie
You want brunchy tacos, you say? Well, friend, do I have the place for you! Tuco and Blondie recently arrived on the Southport scene but is possibly one of the yummiest kid-friendly upscale Mexican restaurants (that’s a real category, right?) on the North Side. Classic brunch items sit alongside omelets and classic Mexican fare, and, bonus, if you order the sangria instead of a mimosa you can claim it’s healthy. (“Look at that fruit in there! It’s practically a salad.”)
3358 N Southport Ave.
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Southport Brown Line (~155 feet)
3rd Coast Café & Wine Bar
Don’t be fooled by 3rd Coast’s Gold Coast location; it’s all heart and zero pretension. This classic Chicago gem features freshly-baked scones daily, an extensive breakfast and brunch menu, and well-priced wines, drinks and craft beers. Come here and you’ll see why this remains the oldest café in Gold Coast.
1260 N Dearborn
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Clark and Division Red Line (.2 mile)
A perpetual favorite among families in the know, the Bongo room has a few locations in the city. Bongo Room has a menu that will satisfy both the sweetest and most savory teeth in your dining party and has locations in Andersonville, Wicker Park and the South Loop. Note that the South Loop location does not serve alcohol, so if you do want to partake in their extensive mimosa and Bloody Mary offerings you’ll need to stick north or west.
Andersonville: 5022 N. Clark
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Argyle Red Line (~.5 mile)
Wicker Park: 1470 N. Milwaukee
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Damen Blue Line (~.2 mile)
South Loop (does not serve alcohol): 1152 S. Wabash
Nearest ‘L’ Stop: Roosevelt Red/Green/Orange (275 feet)
*Please read “mimosa-friendly” as “any alcoholic beverage that for some reason is deemed appropriate to drink in the morning on weekends”-friendly.
**Apologies to all my Canadian friends for the vast overgeneralization of your food culture, eh***.
***And for that, too.
Taylor Wood is a Florida-raised, Chicago-obsessed mom living in Buena Park with her son, dog, cat and husband.
See more of Taylor 's stories here.
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