Credit: My Half of the Sky
When you became a parent, you welcomed a lot of good things into your life (that new baby smell alone!). But you also said so-long to this concept of alone time – or couple time, or girlfriend time. Reclaim those lost moments at one of these Wheaton spots (and yes, you can bring along the kiddos when you’re scratching that caffeine itch).
This brewery, which gets its name from Wheaton’s former status as a dry town, always has four beers on tap, including some experimental flavors. On the hook as the designated driver? They also have a house-made soda you can sip in lieu of booze. The brewery often hosts intimate concerts on Friday or Saturday nights, so you can jam out while you drink up. 120B N. Main St.
You don’t have to go to Galena to enjoy the fruit of the vine. This charming shop is the tasting room for Roselle-based Lynfred Winery. Stop in for wine by the glass, a tasting of six varieties or a flight of three (cheese plates are also available). Knowledgeable staff are always willing to help you choose – because believe me, it’s harder than it sounds! 127 W. Front St.
Chicago is the home of improv, but the Western suburbs know a little about it as well. The shows at this black box theater, which feature three different improv teams, can get a little salty, so it’s best to hire a sitter for your outing. It’s also BYOB, and the liquid courage can make the already-funny shows downright hilarious. Kids want to get in on the improvisational action? The studio offers 6-week class sessions for your SNL hopefuls to perfect their skills. 123 W. Front St.
Whether you’re looking for a girls’ night out or a quirky date night, this art studio has it all. Experienced artists walk you step-by-step through making your own masterpiece, with specially themed nights throughout the year. And it’s BYOB, so you’ll have an excuse if those lines are a little wobblier than you planned. 122 N. Hale St.
Sure, Starbucks is just across the street, but this is a true coffee-lover’s haven. This coffee shop takes its joe pretty seriously, with locally roasted beans that are sourced from around the world. The most famous offering is the Salted Beer Caramel latte, and there are always scrumptious baked goods on offer, including Friday deliveries from Donut Drop of Schaumburg. 114 N. Main St.
This coffee shop’s motto is “Brewing a Better World,” and its commitment to social justice is truly inspiring. The shop sells fair-trade coffee, accompanied by baked goods provided by a local non-profit that employs women who are overcoming trauma and hardship, such as trafficking, addiction or being a refugee. And proceeds from purchases purses, jewelry, candles and other items help tackle issues like homelessness, extreme poverty and the environment. Coffee with a conscience? Sign us up. 121 W. Wesley St.
If you like your caffeine with a side of breakfast, these two cafes are eggs-actly what you need (sorrynotsorry). Both restaurants serve an impressively broad breakfast menu, complete with seasonal offerings that help keep the experience fresh. On the caffeine front, Egg Harbor’s famous pottery mugs hold Intelligentsia coffee, while Egg’lectic offers a to-die-for French Vanilla Cappuccino. 208 S. Hale St.; 145 N. Hale St.