The Run Down

Sometimes the gray and wet Chicago winters can put us in a funk. We don't want to go anywhere, and weekend plans consist of bundling up at home with something hot to drink and eat. After consecutive weeks of that, you might get a little stir-crazy. We're going to change that by getting out of the house and heading to a cozy book store/bar/ice cream in Lincoln Park. Take it over and make this hang out space your winter home.

1. Hot Toddy's @ Kibbitznest

2. Deep Dish @ Pequod's

1. Kibbitznest

If you’ve ever had dreams of opening up a book store, bar, and ice cream shop business, then this is what you might have imagined. As soon as you step in, you’ll feel completely at home. Books line the walls from floor to ceiling in this loft like space. It seems like your at a low-key cocktail party at someone’s house — there are other customers hanging out on plush couches playing games, others deep in conversation, and  and some going through the store’s record collection and playing DJ for the entire space.

With any good party, there are some house rules to keep in mind.

– This is a wi-fi free zone. You won’t find people on their computers doing work. This place is meant for you to detox from electronics and engage in conversation.

– They aren’t super strict about phones but try not to have it out the whole time you’re here.

– Open Wednesday – Sunday. Hours can be found here.

Below are pictures of the front half of Kibbitznest. Here’s where you’ll find the ice cream station (serving Bobtail Ice Cream), and the bar.

On a cold night, we decided to warm up with a hot pot of tea. This wasn’t any regular tea, this was Kibbitznest’s version that came with a shot of whiskey mixed in. There isn’t an extensive food menu here, but they do make a mean cheese and meat plate. You’ll also notice a board game in the background. This place has tons and tons of board games on their shelves that you can pick from and play. Where’s my Bananagrams crew at?

Along the window you’ll find working typewriters.  We saw someone working on a typewriter when we first entered. Initially we thought it was their personal typewriter and they just took the no wi-fi policy a bit too seriously. It turns out that these are for anybody to use. There is even blank paper that you can load into them.

2. Pequod’s

We’re trying to minimize anytime spent outside. After a few rounds of beers and games, you might be looking to eat something a bit more substantial than a meat and cheese plate. Lucky for us, right across the street is arguably one of Chicago’s best deep dish pizza spots. Everyone has their own opinion on deep dish place, but this one is my preferred places to go for deep dish.

While we’re getting Pequod’s, we’re not eating there. That place gets packed so we’re going to be ordering to go. Where will we eat? Take your pizza right back across the street to Kibbitznest. Because they don’t have an extensive food menu, they encourage you to bring food in if you’re so inclined.

We’re taking our pizza to their back room. Walk behind the bar down this hallway that opens up to another hangout space.

This back room has their own sound system in place, and you can hook it up to your phone and spread your taste in music to everyone else hanging out here.

This is where we end the night. Like all good parties, we end with a late night food binge.

Here’s a small sized pepperoni deep dish pizza from Pequod’s in all its glory. Along the edge is the famous caramelized crust. Before putting it in the oven, Pequod’s spreads a thin layer of cheese around the outside of the pizza which gives it a crispy fried cheese crust.

If you need plates and silverware, then you can grab some up at the bar. While you’re at it, finish off the food binge and order some ice cream as well.