Last week Shall We Wine featured The Best LGBTQ+ Cocktail Bars for Pride Month. This week we’ll be taking a look at some restaurants and other establishments for you to try.

When it comes to supporting LGBTQ+ spaces, Northalsted—more commonly known as Boystown but was adjusted in recent years to be a more inclusive neighborhood term for all those who identify—is often the first neighborhood that comes to mind as the heart of Chicago’s dynamic and ever-evolving LGBTQ+ community, especially since it was the first officially recognized gay village in the United States. 

But just like how Pride is more than a month-long celebration, more than a flag, more than a parade, let’s keep in mind that supporting LGBTQ+ establishments include supporting those places within and beyond the gridlines of Boystown.

At SWW, we are committed to love and inclusivity every day. To celebrate our LGBTQ+ friends, family, and colleagues, here’s a list of must-visit spots from restaurants to cafes and more!

Photo Credit: Kale My Name

Something Healthy: Kale My Name
I am the last person to ever crave healthy food swaps. I am as omnivore as omnivore can come and often on the hunt for the next best yummy thing. You can probably even trace this food “attitude” back to my childhood… the kid who wanted Supreme pizza when the rest of the class wanted Cheese or Pepperoni. But with age has also come with its own set of minor health scares, and with that I have come to realize that living with some dietary limitations is the reality for many. Enter Kale My Name. It’s an award-winning 100% plant-based restaurant with a globally-inspired menu. So whether vegan is your lifestyle choice, or you’re simply trying to incorporate more veggies into your routine, you can put on a happy face here!

More info:

Photo Credit: USA Today

Something Touristy (But Not): The Dearborn

Touristy spots can sometimes feel gimmicky or tired, but just like an architectural boat tour, there are exceptions that can be worth your time. I definitely welcome catch ups and invites to The Dearborn. The Dearborn—located right smack in the middle of tourist central within the heart of Chicago’s bustling theater, museum, and shopping district—is one such gem. It’s perfect for those who are unable to venture into more of Chicago’s distinct neighborhoods, considering the city spans at its greatest extent 25 miles north to south and 15 miles east to west. The Dearborn offers an eclectic twist on sophisticated classics and boasts a fun, solid beverage program, making it an ideal foodie fix around the Loop.

For more info:

Photo Credit: Eater

Something Quick: Taylor’s Taco

If you’re anything like me, sometimes all you want is to make a quick taco run. Taylor’s Tacos is Chicago’s first Black-Owned, Woman-Owned, Queer-Owned taco shop and catering company. Inspired by Mexican street-style tacos from California, Taylor Mason brought those vibrant flavors back to her Chicago hometown. Taylor and her wife, Maya, both left their jobs to launch this taco catering business full-time, initially operating through various pop-ups around the city, from Bronzeville to Garfield Park. Conveniently located in the UIC/Med District, Taylor’s Tacos is easily accessible from anywhere in the city. Need to feed a crowd? Taylor’s Tacos offers catering options ranging from on-site live-action service to self-serve taco bars and pre-made taco trays!

For more info:

Photo Credit: Eater

Something Thirst-Quenching: Eli Tea Bar

Andersonville is one of Chicago’s largest LGBTQ+ communities, packed with inclusive-friendly venues, unique locally-owned businesses, and chic boutiques. A standout among them is Eli Tea Bar, originally from suburban Detroit, which offers a fun, alcohol-free social space. Perfect for those seeking a break from alcohol or just a refreshing drink in general, Eli Tea Bar is a specialty tea shop and sober bar with late hours. It provides a welcoming environment for the community, offering tea lattes, kombucha, bubble tea, and over 100 loose-leaf teas. The space frequently hosts open mic nights, silent book clubs, writers’ groups, and arts and crafts nights, making it a dynamic hub for social activities.

For more info:

Photo Credit: Jennivee’s

Something Sweet – Jennivee’s

Visibility for Trans business owners is more crucial than ever. Jenne Vailoces, who grew up baking in the Philippines, turned her dream into reality by opening Jennivee’s Bakery after a career as a physical therapist. Jennivee’s menu features an array of globally-inspired flavors, from classic American tastes to unique Filipino delights like ube and pandan. Jennivee’s bakery transports guests to a nostalgic wonderland with its whimsical decor and delectable treats, reminiscent of owner Vailoces’s childhood favorites. From its charming gold-rimmed seating to vintage picture frames against exposed brick walls, the ambiance exudes cozy chicness.

For more info: