The city of Chicago has many amazing things to offer. In fact, it was just named the World’s Best City for Having it All, by TimeOut Magazine. In all the years I’ve lived here, though, my most favorite part about this city is Lake Michigan. I’ve been fortunate to live near the lake and the lakefront path which serves as the ultimate escape from busy city life, especially when the weather warms up and the sun comes out.
For years, at the Fullerton entrance to the lakefront path, in the heart of Lincoln Park, sat an old run down building whose historic sign read “Theatre On the Lake.” A mostly open-air, lowrise structure that sits about 50 feet from the shore of Lake Michigan.
Often times I would wonder what the plans were for this old structure, considering its location could not be more ideal, but just last summer things started happening. As it turns out the Chicago Park District partnered with Lakefront Hospitality Group to rehabilitate the building, which was originally constructed in 1920.
The newly renovated Theatre On the Lake is now open and home to concerts, theater, events and our favorite, dining! As soon as I discovered that they had opened a restaurant in this newly refreshed beauty I knew I had to check it out.
The Lakefront Restaurant opened this past December and aside from its sweeping views of the big city, it feels very intimate and cozy. My mom and I visited one delightfully sunny Saturday morning in late January and we were so pleased to be able to enjoy all of the natural light beaming through the windows.
We sat down, were greeted by our very friendly waiter and each ordered some fun beverages to get started. My mom selected the Cleetus Heatus Bloody Mary, made with the Chef’s award-winning mix. I decided on a beermosa made with a Daisy Cutter IPA, a Chicago specialty and my go-to, favorite brewski.
As my mom and I were catching up and failing to make our menu selections our waiter came back and convinced us to get this brunch rolling with a side of the restaurant’s Old Fashioned Donut Holes.
Neither my mom nor I are particularly “sweet” people; our food preferences tend to veer towards the savory side. Just a few moments later the doughnut holes arrived at our table, and we were not disappointed to say the least. They were fried to perfection on the outside while still maintaining the soft dough on the inside. The spiced glaze drizzled on top was just enough to turn a savory lover over to the sweet side.
After our little sugar high we were finally ready to order our brunch dishes. I ordered the Eggel and my Mom decided upon the Brunch Toast. The presentation of both of our dishes was beautiful in the casual sense. The Eggel, a baked egg on a homemade everything bagel, topped with whiskey bacon and cheddar cheese, was very tasty. The whiskey bacon was out of this world. However, the baked egg was a tad dry for my taste and the bagel was a bit big. But overall, the bacon and cheddar cheese made up for it and I had no problem finishing it all.
My mom however could not stop talking about how delicious her Brunch Toast was. This was a new item for me so I was intrigued to taste it as well.
A piece of sourdough toast was topped with sausage, pesto sauce, and two perfectly cooked fried eggs, served with arugula and smashed, fried potatoes. All of the components were delicious, but it was the pesto that stole the show. It was layered beautifully between each item without being too overwhelming with flavor, and was the perfect compliment to the salty sausage and potatoes.
We had a lovely Saturday at The Lakefront restaurant and I cannot wait to go back when the weather warms up. Someone was definitely thinking location, location, location when rehabilitating the space as they built out a beautiful patio surrounding the restaurant. And if there’s one thing to note about Chicagoans; it’s that they love a good patio. Especially after a long snowy winter like this one!
The Bitches Say: A. Our service was delightful, our meal was delicious and we can’t wait to go back and enjoy the views all year round.
The Lakefront Restaurant
2401 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60614
The Lakefront Restaurant serves brunch on Saturday’s and Sunday’s from 10 a.m to 3 p.m.