Many of us would love to have a drink every time we eat out, but often abstain due to cost. BYOB restaurants afford us the opportunity to buy beer and wine at liquor store prices and enjoy them openly while dining, sometimes charging a small corking fee. Chicago is home to more BYOB restaurants than many residents are aware of, including the many favorites collected here.
A friendly staff, quality grub, and BYOB policy make Big & Little’s a solid River North dining option. Business has picked up since the burger and seafood joint was featured on Food Networks’ Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. Big & Little’s has even opened outposts in Lakeview and Wicker Park. The original location is a 20-minute walk or five-minute drive from AMLI River North.
How many upscale steakhouses do you know that are BYOB? Patrons are often pleasantly surprised to discover Bavette’s allows you to bring your own wine. The restaurant doesn’t even charge a corkage fee, provided you share one glass from your bottle with a neighboring table. If you live in AMLI’s River North apartments, pull a favorite bottle from your collection before making the 5-minute walk to Bavette’s.
Da Lobsta is another hot River North BYOB restaurant. AMLI River North residents, chill a nice Sauvignon blanc or a six-pack of your favorite brew before crossing the street to indulge in a lobster roll and hush puppies.
This South Loop sushi joint has the standard selection of appetizers and sushi rolls. Rather than order sake and Kirin, however, you can bring your favorite booze from outside. There’s no corkage fee for parties under five, and a Jewel is conveniently located around the corner on Wabash. Kai Sushi is a 10-minute walk from AMLI 900 and AMLI Lofts, and the Jewel is between these Printers Row apartments and the restaurant.
Flavorful, made-to-order tacos, burritos, and bowls are what’s hot at this Korean-Mexican fusion restaurant. So are the food prices and BYOB policy, made more appealing by Superior Liquor Corporation’s presence as a neighbor. If you live in AMLI River North, Seoul Taco is an option for both warming up with beers over dinner before going out and satiating light night hunger. They stay open until 4am on Friday and Saturday nights.
Uru-Swati’s authentic vegetarian fare is popular with both north and south Indians living in Chicago. The menu features an array of curries, dosas, lentil dishes, and rolls. Uru-Swati serves lassis and faloodas, but you can drink whatever you like as long as you bring it. This BYOB restaurant is a 10-minute drive from AMLI Evanston.
Boozy brunch is fun, but those cocktails can add up. BYOB brunch enables you to drink your fill over brunch without spending three times as much on alcohol as on food. Yolk serves eggs Benedict, omelettes, French toast, and other brunch classics. The menu also features a selection of appetizing sandwiches, burgers, and salads. On the beverage front, you’ve got espresso drinks, fresh juices, and fresh-squeezed lemonade. There’s also the option to bring your own champagne and make mimosas or grapefruit mimosas. Yolk’s South Loop location is a short walk from AMLI 900 and AMLI Lofts and the River North and Streeterville locations are walking distance from AMLI River North.
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