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Canned Heat

I succumbed to peer pressure this weekend and tried Stone Lotus hosted Cocaine’s local launch party Friday, and despite plenty of negative buzz, the drink’s appeal doesn’t seem to have taken a hit. "If we lost five customers, we gained 20," says Brian Winshall, the exclusive Chicago distributor of Cocaine, which can be found at … Read more

Tune in Tuesday

Sarah is feeling a bit under the weather today, but she’s determined to make tonight’s Park West event. Check back tomorrow for more from our Last Girl Standing. —– EXCERPT:

15 Minutes With … Brook Jay

Who: Brook Jay, "mid-30s," Humboldt Park Job: Founder and co-president of Wild West Comedy Show and filming it for a documentary. Within a month, I was working with him. I arranged a product placement for Diageo, the world’s largest liquor company." Boozing with Vaughn and hanging out with his then-girlfriend Jennifer Aniston was a nice … Read more

Happy Birthday to Me

I didn’t want to make a big deal about my birthday this year. Like I said last week, approaching your mid-30s isn’t necessarily an occasion to celebrate. That said, I had the best birthday weekend this year, simply because I spent it with good friends and family. My pizza party at Piece was great; we … Read more

The Dirty Thirties

Some of you may have noticed I haven’t been blogging about my love life lately. That’s because I actually have one right now, and I don’t want to mess it up! What can I say; I guess I’ve learned some lessons along the way, especially from my very first post about the doctor – although … Read more

Garage Sale

Who says hanging out in a garage isn’t cool anymore? Cortland’s Garage (1645 W. Cortland St.) opened Friday night in the old Leopard Lounge space; the new bar bears only a minimal resemblance to the old 23-and-up hangout. Gone are the Bettie Page-esque pinups and leopard print; the fireplace is history, too, replaced by cube … Read more

Thursday is the New Friday

Industry insiders tend to think of Fridays and Saturdays as "amateur nights": Only the uninitiated, the masses, go out on weekend nights. The really good stuff usually happens on Thursdays. Since a few readers have asked for recommendations, here are some of tonight’s top events, all of which are open to the public. This is … Read more

Queen of Clubs?

My target destination Friday night was the Tokyo 21. Over a sushi sampler and a couple of bottles of hot sake at the bar, we made a new friend, Michael Laungani, 31, a Chicago-based consultant and contestant from season five of The Apprentice. Laungani was also one of People magazine’s hottest bachelors last year – … Read more

15 Minutes with … Joey Vartanian

Who: Joey Vartanian, 43, Lincoln Park ("born and raised")Job: Owner of Maxbar,  and Tin Lizzienow resides (2483 N. Clark St.). "There were no big clubs back then,"he says. "Just smaller new-wave neighborhood bars like Exit." Twenty years later, in 2002, Vartanian made a risky move by taking over ownership of Crobar (1543 N. Kingsbury St.), … Read more

Weekend Update

I met a couple of the boys at Cans, sans strippers. After the disappointing outcome, I needed some cheering up, so I headed to an engagement party at The Underground with the birthday boy and his posse. On my way over, I sent a text to the owners to see if we’d have any trouble … Read more