The beauty of large-format drinks: one table, one cocktail. Round up a crew of good sharers and try these eight colossal beverages.
Fish House Punch ($60, serves up to six) at Frontier
1072 N. Milwaukee Ave., West Town, 773-772-4322
Frontier’s take on the nearly 300-year-old drink stirs cognac into a rum-based punch, with lemon and peach liqueur to mellow out the booziness.
7th Cup Punch ($85, serves six to eight) at The Sixth
2200 W. Lawrence Ave., Lincoln Square, 773-433-5959
Prepare your Instagram: This mix of Pimm’s No. 1, cucumber, sparkling wine, and the table’s choice of liquor, hits the table in a show-stopping crystal bowl.
Blonde on Blonde ($26, serves two to three) at Bottlefork
441 N. Clark St., River North, 312-955-1900
How do you improve upon the combo of vodka, rum, white port, Champagne, and chile pepper? Sip it out of a copper pineapple.
Space Juice for Jered ($55, serves eight) at Punch House
1227 W. 18th St., Pilsen, 312-526-3851
The menu offers a deep selection of punches (hence the name). Try the Space Juice for Jered, an unlikely mix of ingredients like tequila, sparkling wine, grapefruit, black pepper, and sage.
Kick in the Daisy ($280, serves 20) at Cindy’s
12 S. Michigan Ave., The Loop, 312-792-3502
The popular rooftop restaurant bills each of its two large-format options as “apothecary of boozy awesomeness” that “cures 20.” This sinus-clearing tequila and ancho chile liqueur margarita really is the best medicine.
Octopus’s Garden ($200, serves six to 10) at the Dawson
730 W. Grand Ave., West Town, 312-243-8955
Rum moves beyond ho-hum status when it meets cognac, vanilla, and lime and is served out of an octopus-like dispenser topped with strawberries, grapefruit, and garden herbs.
Ruby Mae’s Second Surfin’ Bird ($30, serves two) at Lost Lake
3154 W. Diversey Ave., Logan Square, 773-293-6048
This tequila-based cocktail—chilled out by mezcal, port, Campari, passion fruit, pineapple, and lime—will win over even the most resolute tequila haters.
Hyde Park Mule ($36, serves two to four) at the Promontory
5311 S. Lake Park Ave., Hyde Park, 312-801-2100
The 16” On Center group, which includes both this spot and the aforementioned Punch House, may well be the masters of cocktailing for a crowd. The Promontory’s addition of hibiscus tea and fresh lemon to the standard vodka-and-ginger mule makes it appealing to both mixology novices and discerning boozers.