Don't let the simple brick facade fool you: Monnie Burke's (1163 W. 18th St., Pilsen) shelters a spacious, elegant interior with abundant seating, whether you're looking to dine or just enjoy a couple of cocktails. There's even more to explore in the back, where a patio—one of the city's largest, with room for 200—twinkles with Edison-style string lighting.

Co-owners Margi Abu-Taleb and Anan Abu-Taleb (Maya Del Sol, Pizza Capri) had family in mind when they dreamed up this Pilsen spot, naming it after Margi's late aunt. And a Saturday night visit made it clear that this is a place where you're welcome to unwind and feel right at home. Whether in button-down shirts or board shorts, patrons flocked to the patio; it was clearly their oasis in a heatwave. 

Here's what we saw when we stopped by: