One of the buzzier openings of the summer, Bar Siena (832 W. Randolph St., West Loop, 312-492-7775) will be a showcase for all kinds of regional Italian fare, from antipasti to bomboloni (doughnut holes) to pizzas fired from an 800-degree oven named Bella.

The Windsor (160 E. Huron St., Streeterville, 312-943-7777) is aiming to be a neighborhood spot to a not-very-neighborhoody area, with a menu full of American standards that get slightly dressed up by chef Todd Stein.


If you’re impatiently awaiting the opening of Iliana Regan’s micro-bakery, Bunny, and its sister pop-up space, WunderPOP, you can get a taste of it on Sundays and Mondays at Elizabeth Restaurant (4835 N. Western Ave., Lincoln Square, 773-681-0651). From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. starting August 2, walk-ins can purchase a selection of what will be offered when the bakery finally opens later this month, and from 6-11 p.m., diners can get in on a ramen pop-up along with drinks and desserts. Both options are cash-only, and they’ll be available twice a week until Bunny and WunderPOP finally open.

Geek Bar Beta (1941 W. North Ave., Wicker Park, 773-687-9824) was never supposed to be permanent, but issues with the planned long-term location in Lincoln Park kept the spot dedicated to all things geeky stuck. Now they’ve launched a crowdfunding campaign to help out with construction costs and to keep things running in Wicker Park instead—you can help out here.

When Maple & Ash (8 W. Maple St., Gold Coast) opens this summer, it’ll mark a homecoming for newly announced wine director Belinda Chang, who previously worked at Charlie Trotter’s but has been in New York for the last eight years, including a stint as wine and service director for Danny Meyer’s spot the Modern. Do you like Italian food during the day?

Good news! Dolce Italian (127 E. Huron St., River North, 312-754-0700) is adding a daily breakfast service from 7–11 a.m. and a lunch service from 11:30 a.m.–2 p.m. Menu attractions include a Bolognese burger with meat sauce and Swiss cheese, perfect for when you’re in the mood for something light.