In all of Chicago’s drinking universe, there isn’t really anything like Band of Bohemia (4710 N. Ravenswood Ave., Ravenswood, 773-271-4710). Nowhere else can you combine an upscale-casual vibe, totally gourmet sit-down fare, and beers so intricate they may as well be wine. That is, there’s nothing else like it yet—but expect emulators soon of a place this interesting.
The bartenders precisely pair flavor-forward beers brewed in house (beet and thyme, maitake mushroom and toasted basmati rice) with seasonal eats. The cocktail menu does not slouch, either, and for the booze-averse, you can help yourself to a coffee bar. The décor is appropriately bohemian, and the crowd is cool without feeling cold. You'd expect nothing less from Michael Carroll and Craig Sindelar, two Alinea vets who have been developing this idea for years.
Here's what else we saw when we stopped in.