Browsing Tag

Lakeview

chicago cheap ass (13)
Drink, Food,

GIVEAWAY: Best Chicago Tea Spots

I’m somewhat of an anomaly in our extremely caffeinated world. I HATE coffee. I don’t know what it is about the brew – I’m just not a fan. As such, I’ve adapted to 9-5 job life by pledging my allegiance to another popular caffeinated beverage: tea. Tea has a lot of awesome health benefits, but really as far as I’m concerned, it just tastes better. Check out my picks for purchasing and enjoying tea in Chicago and beyond!

Argo Tea

Chicago Tea

Green Tea Strawberry
Source: Argo Tea

Argo Tea has to be my favorite tea spot in Chicago. They have so many delicious signature drinks that can be served hot or cold, and they rotate new ones in and out on a monthly basis. Past that, there are so many different customization options – they really have something for everyone. Loose-leaf tea canisters tend to cost about $10-12, which is a great value for the everyday tea drinker. When I buy a container of loose leaf tea, it lasts FOREVER. I have 3 or 4 that I use all the time, I got them a year ago, and I’m not more than halfway through any of them. They also have a solid LoyalTEA (see what they did there?) loyalty program that rewards the frequent hand-crafted tea drinker. Besides Argo Tea, the remaining tea spots on this list don’t necessarily advertise the fact that you can get a drink to go (as opposed to purchasing loose-leaf tea to brew yourself), but Argo Tea specializes in these beverages. I love their flavored green and white teas. If I had to pick just one to recommend, I’d suggest the Green Tea Strawberry. It mixes great with lemonade after being cooled down with ice!

Adagio Teas

Chicago Teas

Ali Shan Tea Source: Adagio Teas

Adagio is where I first fell in love with loose-leaf tea. I got a Groupon (still available through the link) for a tea tasting and (which included a ceramic teapot!) when a tea-loving friend was in town to visit. I decided to taste a few types of tea I hadn’t really given a chance to before – oolong and white tea. Their Ali Shan Tea is a premium oolong tea that I love. Did you know that oolong tea improves digestion? You’ll learn this and many other fun facts about tea if you go through the tasting experience! Personally, I’m pretty obsessed with green tea because of it’s metabolic benefits and how it tastes. But once I gave these two new varieties a chance, I keep replacing them whenever they run out. I would consider Adagio to be slightly more premium than Argo Tea, with a wider selection. They have a ridiculous amount of tea-related accessories – tea brewing apparatuses, travel mugs, etc. This store is the tea-aficionado’s dream.

DavidsTea

Chicago Tea

Countess of Seville Tea Source: DavidsTea

DavidsTea is an interesting tea store. It has elements of Argo Tea and Adagio Teas, in that you can get a to-go drink and they have plenty of tea accessories. But there is something that also makes it completely different. DavidsTea offers a lot of unique tea blends that change the flavor you’d expect to get from the respective tea bases (green, white, oolong, etc). For some of my tea-loving friends, this is unacceptable. They don’t like DavidsTea because the tea has weird additives that make it into more of a novelty than a detoxifying beverage. DavidsTea is probably a good place to go if you don’t have many preconceived notions about how tea should taste, or aren’t a purist. My favorite tea is the Countess of Seville, which is a green tea that draws similarities to a black tea.

Coffee & Tea Exchange

Chicago Teas

On the purely local business side of things in Chicago is the Coffee & Tea Exchange in Lakeview. This place is awesome. There are so many different tea (and coffee, obviously) varieties, and the presentation includes colorful and crafty hand-drawn signs (see picture). You can ask for as much or as little tea as you want, and it’s priced and packaged accordingly. The Coffee & Tea Exchange is a great place to go if you like to try a lot of different varieties and don’t want to be stuck with the same flavor for a long time. Or if you don’t want to shell out a lot of money at once for a large amount of tea that might go bad. I like their gunpowder green tea and super-affordable matcha tea.

Teabox

Obviously great tea options aren’t limited to the geographic area of Chicago. In fact, all of the aforementioned companies ship across the United States if there’s not a physical location near you (Hi, non-Chicago readers!). But another option that requires even less effort is to purchase a subscription to a service that curates different teas each month. Teabox is one such service.

11756486_10153486173842760_321694618_n

The packaging itself is reason enough to order a subscription. It’s functional and informative. It used to be (when I got this box) that you pay $15 each month (including shipping!), you get a specially-curated selection of fresh teas. The box I got focused on minimal-caffeine teas to wind down with at night.

11720586_10153486173982760_1850678854_n

What I love about each individual tea is the attention to detail. Check out the label that tells you what exactly the tea is, what it smells like, tastes like, what you should add to it (if anything!) and some very specific steeping instructions. I don’t think any of the aforementioned companies can make the same claims about attention to detail in the tea tasting experience. Teabox comes highly recommended by me as a company that truly understands tea.

Teabox has changed their strategy slightly as of late. Now, their process is more personalized where you take a quiz to determine the type of tea that best suits your taste and lifestyle – the first company in the tea industry to go this route. Another awesome feature – it’s only $9.99 each month!

Giveaway!

Argo Tea and Adagio Tea both donated products to be given away to you lucky readers! Enter below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Where’s your favorite place to enjoy tea in Chicago? Or buy some to enjoy at work? Let us know in the comments!

*Disclosure: Argo Tea, Adagio, and Teabox each donated products and giftcards when I reached out to them about writing this article.

11694417_10153472394507760_1268864273_n
CheapWeek,

CheapWeek: Fourth of July Shenanigans

6/29 – Noodles & Company for Lunch

I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: SIGN UP FOR NOODLES & COMPANY’S EMAIL UPDATES. Follow this link for several other emails you should sign up for in order to score some free or half-priced meals. I bring it up because I had a BOGO entree coupon about to expire and used it for lunch today and tomorrow. $18 worth of quality food for $9? I’ll take it.

My boyfriend and I went to his parents’ place for dinner. They are some pretty fantastic chefs, and tonight was no exception. I’m dying to repeat their garlic roasted potatoes recipe. Also Brooke, my boyfriend’s brother’s fiance brought me an incredibly thoughtful housewarming gift bag. How cute are these towels??

11693086_10153472394492760_1182168943_n

6/30 – Social Media Day and Articles I Wrote for Choose Chicago and Social Media Beast

So I’ll start off by linking to two articles that I wrote and were published today:

Barcocina: A Refreshing Bar and Restaurant Experience in Lakeview

Earlier in June I went to Barcocina and had the opportunity to taste a lot of different parts of their menu. This article for Choose Chicago reviews my experience. Spoiler Alert: If you live in Lakeview, you definitely need to check it out.

The other article is about all the different elements that go into a social post. Yeah, yeah I know it’s not about CHICAGO, but it is about one of my other passions: digital marketing. Check it out here if you’re interested.

11694417_10153472394507760_1268864273_n

I reached out to the guy behind BackPackChicago, another awesome Chicago blog with a focus on finding unique destinations and educating tourists and locals alike about the beautiful city that is Chicago. We had a lovely lunch at Ramen-san – my first time there. We both chose the “express ramen lunch” (featured above). It included a half bowl of ramen, rice with a choice of meat, and a side salad. It was nice to connect with another blogger just getting started in a similar niche. Look forward to some collaborations between the two of us in the future!

Finally, I spent my evening chatting with friends new and old at Social Media Day at Rockit. There were a lot of great speakers lined up, including some I’ve had the opportunity to speak with/learn from before like Choose Chicago’s Nycole Hampton and #Foodiechat’s Steve Green and several other notables of the Chicago scene. One problem – it was all but impossible to hear them and focus on what they were saying. Apparently Social Media Day is hosted in the same venue every year. Maybe next year they’ll provide more seating and better acoustics… Regardless, I had a blast and would go again next year if only for the networking. The sliders with aioli tater tots weren’t too bad, either.

7/1 – Townhouse Round Two

Last week, my boyfriend and I went to Townhouse Wine Bar. He had bought two Gilt City deals that were about to expire, so we made our way back for round two this week! We tried new things – Nachos with a really delicious jalapeno cream cheese drizzled over it, the Townhouse Burger (you had me at pretzel bun and tomato chutney), and got more tacos – soy-braised pulled pork this time. The food was still amazing, and if I have another reason to go back – I will. They have a lot of great daily specials and the cocktails are divine. Again, we got $90 worth of food for $45!

7/2 – Vegetarian Restaurant Focus Group and Furious Spoon

So I’m not sure if I’m sworn to secrecy on this or not, but I’m not going to ruin my chances of a similar experience. I’m talking about a focus group I was invited to be a part of at a vegetarian chain in the Loop, with locations all around Chicago and in other states. If you can figure out what it is based on that, you win a prize. Anyways, I got to try some pretty incredible food, give my opinion on different perceptions based on the interior of the restaurant, the menu, etc, AND they gave me a $25 gift card to come back. Without giving away too much information – they had a blueberry LAVENDER lemonade and perfectly-creamy frosted carrot cupcake that I will be coming back for. Dreaming about my return visit.

Trying to find a link for you guys to sign up for focus groups like this… I will keep you posted!

Oh also… I entered Furious Spoon’s free-style rap battle contest to win free ramen for a year. Witness my humiliation:

7/3 – Door County for the Fourth of July

My company’s floating holiday was today, so I left early with my two best friends to go to my boyfriend’s family’s lake house in Door County, Wisconsin. If this sounds familiar, it’s because I was in Door County just two weeks ago for their Beer Festival. My boyfriend’s parents were gracious enough to have not only us, but their family and more friends of the family. It was a full house. We ended up sleeping in tents to give the adults (I still sit at the kid’s table) the best sleeping facilities. Although it wasn’t the most comfortable sleep of my life, it was an experience I haven’t had before.

7/4 – Second Amendment Rights

Our founding fathers fought for the bill of rights, or whatever, so we spent a good chunk of the Fourth of July shooting off guns at a local shooting range.

11733436_10153472394482760_1868984941_n

Upon returning to the cabin, I took a nap in a hammock.

And when I woke up, I had a dinner of cheese-filled wieners, cheeseburgers, beans and good Wisconsin beer.

11693086_10153472394487760_1148595934_n

God bless America.

7/5 – The Weekend is Over

After one last shopping run consisting of more cider, cheese curds, hot sauce, cherry jam, and artisanal olive oil (see below), we began the long drive home.

11721980_10153472391312760_16559628_n

On the way back, we stopped at Qdoba, and I’m starting to wonder why I’ve never given it a real chance. For $8, I got a badass quesadilla filled to the max. THEY HAVE AMAZING QUESO.

I fully intended on being productive that night (including writing this post), but I was exhausted from a weekend of fun and friends. Back to the real world!

Don’t just read about good deals – get them yourself! Find of-the-moment updates by liking Chicago Cheap Ass on Facebook.

chicago cheap ass (5)
Life, Shopping, Style,

Another Damn Blog Post About Looking Fly On A Budget

Before we get started here, yes, I know you know about Ragstock. I know that’s where you get all your purple flannel shirts and American-flag-print tank tops. It has taken over as the number one place for twenty-somethings to go when they need new threads. And not for nothing—Ragstock features a great selection, friendly employees, and relatively low prices.

But you’re still spending too much if you do all your shopping there.

Yes, friends, it is possible to complete your quest for fresh menswear without the help of Ragstock. Come with me and allow me to expand your horizons, and save you money while you do it.

Your first step when buying clothing should be making a list. I know, it’s boring and lame and I sound like your mom. Do it anyway. Anybody who goes to Target for a case of beer and leaves with a gigantic beanbag chair, Captain America graphic t-shirt, and Pikachu piggy bank knows that having a plan can help avoid spending more than you have budgeted out. List off items you need, and then items you want, or could use more of. That way, if you see something you dig that’s off script, you can at least make a note of it and keep that kind of thing to a minimum.

The second step is optional, but before I go shopping, I usually make note of the color of some of my favorite clothing items, and take a look at a color wheel. This website goes over some basic color theory, and is worth a quick read, but suffice it to say that when figuring out which clothes go with each other, a color wheel can help a lot. Similar colors are next to each other, while complementary colors are opposite each other on the wheel. Contrasting colors are separated by three colors on the wheel. Again, having an in-depth knowledge of color theory isn’t necessary for you to look fresh, but it definitely helps.

So, where do you shop? Good question. Depends what you’re looking for.

Elliott Consignment is a great menswear place, offering name brand consignment items that skew preppier or more business-casual. You’ll find boat shoes, polo shirts, and shorts with little palm trees on them. Prices range, but since it’s consignment, you won’t be paying much more than $20 for a nice dress shirt. Plus, this is a great place to unload any clothes you want to sell.

If you’re looking for something more casual, Plato’s Closet and Crossroads both sell new and used items more geared towards everyday style, and in my experience, both offer lower prices than Ragstock for items that aren’t, like, old band t-shirts. The only issue is that the menswear department in both of these stores is fairly small. You may have to hop around a bit if you’re looking for something in particular. Both of these stores will also take in-season clothes off your hands and send you away with cash.

The problem with all of these options is that if you’re looking for something in particular, it’s always going to be a crapshoot. And while shopping for clothing online is always a bit more stressful, given that you’re never really sure whether or not things will fit just right, there is a time and a place for it.

Enter JackThreads. They sell all new clothing, so some of it will skew pricey, but once you sign up, you’ll start receiving emails from them to tell you that oh, by the way, all suits are 50% off today.

If you’re looking for, say, a mint green shorts suit, it’s worth signing up for JackThreads’ email alerts, because more than likely, it’ll go on sale and you’ll be able to pick it up for like 60 bucks. I have personally bought 3 suits and 3 dress shirts from JackThreads and the total was a little bit over 200 dollars. Oh, and most of their items are fully returnable for either cash or store credit in case things don’t fit just right. If you can be patient, it’s worth monitoring your emails to see if the site is having a sale on something you need, because chances are, they will. Just know that if you’re looking for something super fancy, like a 100% wool suit, you’ll need to be prepared to spend a bit. They don’t really have much of it, and what they do have doesn’t often go on sale.

Or, hell, you can just go to Ragstock. I know you will anyway.

Screen shot 2015-05-31 at 10.10.09 PM
CheapWeek,

CheapWeek: Burger Binge, Chuck Palahniuk and Moving

5/25 – Postmates Epic Burger

The week started off on a great note since Monday was Memorial Day. I cooked up a big breakfast for my sister and boyfriend, and ordered a pretty rad lunch from Postmates, which was offering free Epic Burger (up to 2) for Memorial Day weekend. I beat the “surge” pricing by ordering right when the freebie was offered, but throughout the weekend saw it go as high as 3x the delivery price. No bueno. When using Postmates plan accordingly.

5/26 – Cooking Leftovers

I had to be out of my apartment by Friday night, so this week was spent getting creative with what was left in my fridge. It’s amazing how many different things you can make with a limited amount of materials. One delicious but weird combination was some turkey sloppy joe meat with rice and broccoli.

5/27 – Yelp Burger Binge, Reddit, StumbleUpon and the University of Iowa

11297822_10153374838117760_1994699384_n

This week was Yelp’s “Burger Binge” week and several delicious Chicago burger joints had $5 specials. Perhaps the best special was at Flub a Dub Chubs, where I got a ridiculously good burger (the “Grandma K” burger had a pretzel bun, goat cheese, and bacon), fries, and a drink for $5. Normally that would’ve been at least $15. You may have missed this year’s Burger Binge week, but follow Yelp Chicago on Twitter for more local Chicago events.

11270153_10153374838097760_1480114102_n

I made huge strides today in blog traffic after discovering how great of referral traffic can come from Reddit and StumbleUpon. I double my monthly average visitors in the span of two days. Unreal.

Finally, my old management professor Ken Brown (now the Associate Dean of the business school!) gave a shout out to my blog on his blog.

5/28 – 25 Degrees burgers and Falafill Groupon

Because one burger is not enough to qualify as a “binge,” I went to another of Yelp’s Burger Binge week spots for lunch with a friend. 25 Degrees had a great burger special for $5 when they were usually $13. Although I noticed while there that they do a lunch special that’s $13 for a burger, fries, and a beer. I’ll be back! This time I got a Specialty #1(Arugula, Thousand Island, Bacon, Mindoro Blue, Fontina Cheese) and sweet potato fries with a garlic aioli dipping sauce. Not a bad way to spend lunch!

11279974_10153374838107760_2062232219_n

I spent the night getting some packing done and wanted to use one of the last Groupons I had for my neighborhood. This one was for a place called Falafill, which is a fast casual mediterranean place. The Groupon was for two entrees and two sides, but honestly the entrees were sufficient without needing the sides. I got a bowl with meat, rice, and a pita. They let you take that to their “Mezza Bar” where you load up on typical mediterranean veggie dishes. You can fit a lot of these sides in the bowl. Entrees are $9.50, but worth it if you load up before you leave.

5/29 – MOVING

Today was a mess of boxes and logistics. My boyfriend and his brothers graciously helped me move from my old apartment to my boyfriend’s garage (have to wait a few days to move into my new place in Roscoe Village). Having strong men around to help with these sorts of things is awesome – just make sure to reward them with pizza and beer!

11354740_10153374838102760_1935861133_n

One thing worth mentioning is that I FINALLY tried 5411 Empanadas before vacating the neighborhood of Lakeview. They had some incredible flavors like the above pictured Malbec Beef, a Goat Cheese/Dates/Bacon empanadas, and a Chorizo/Patatas Bravas version. At $2.50 a piece, they won’t break the bank and can make a good snack or meal. They have a food truck that circles around the Loop! Check their Twitter for locations.

Finally, my latest blog post for Choose Chicago was posted, which is about Remington’s – a new restaurant addition to Michigan Avenue.

5/30 – Wisconsin Beer and Cheese Cruise and Chuck Palahniuk

Saturday was the busiest day of the week (keeping in mind that I just packed up my life and moved out of my apartment!). My boyfriend and I got up early to go to Navy Pier (tourists) to board the Mystic Blue for a Wisconsin Beer and Cheese Cruise. I’d been to an event by the same organizers before and was excited to see how it would differ on a boat. The weather sucked, but luckily the festivities were indoors. We got 20 tickets each and a tasting glass and honestly didn’t even make it through all of the tickets because each vendor gave such generous pours. Various cheeses, sausages, and pastries were passed around as everyone tasted all the great alcoholic beverages Wisconsin has to offer. I would definitely do it again!

11304241_10153374845792760_1931607583_n

After the boat came back to the pier, we hustled to Union Station for the next part of our day, which required going to Naperville. If you’re not a regular Metra commuter, you may not be aware of the Weekend Passes, which allow you unlimited train rides on Saturday and Sunday (and some holidays) for $8. Usually train fare to the suburb where my parents live is that much for one way, so don’t forget to ask for this deal!

11349856_10153374838112760_198866523_n

Once in Naperville, we split a cab with some other attendees of the event we were headed to. My favorite author, Chuck Palahniuk, was in town for a speaking event to promote his new book. Tickets were $40 and included signed copies of that book and the Fight Club 2 comic. It was a pretty incredible event – he read some short stories, led some fun competitions, and answered fans’ burning questions. We hung out at the hotel bar afterwards to watch the Blackhawks win. We were lucky to catch Chuck Palahniuk as he was heading out and got a picture! He answered my burning question about the ending of Survivor, but I won’t spoil it here… 🙂

5/31 – Ay Ay Picante Groupon

After getting home late Saturday night, I had to sleep in. I had a pretty lazy day, although I did publish another article reviewing the Fitbit Aria. I had another Groupon burning a hole in my pocket (so to say), which was only about a mile from my boyfriend’s house. Plus it’s BYOB! We went to Ay Ay Picante which serves Peruvian food. I’ve got to get acquainted with the menu because we’re going to Peru this September 🙂 The Groupon was for $30 worth of food and it was about $20 more than that after two entrees and an appetizer. I’d recommend it!

Don’t just read about good deals – get them yourself! Find of-the-moment updates by liking Chicago Cheap Ass on Facebook.

11276029_10153345471897760_433863240_n
CheapWeek,

#CheapWeek – Remington’s, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

5/18 – #BikeLakeview and Zipcar

Today was a good day for freebies. After checking in to Kuma’s Corner using the hashtag “#BikeLakeview,” I won a $25 giftcard to any participating Lakeview Chamber of Commerce store. It pays to know what’s going on in the social world. If you’re on Twitter, you should check out the Chicago lists I made, keeping track of these promotions (or just follow me. I retweet great offers on a regular basis).

In other news, Zipcar will be giving away free passes to a popular Chicago music festival soon. I do work for them as a brand ambassador on the weekends, so I already scored two one-day passes for me and my boyfriend. 🙂

5/19 – Just Salad and Bull & Bear

I came to the office today with a bunch of packages waiting for me. I’ve been using the office as my shipping address because I’m about to move. Two of the packages were some pasta sauces I’ll be reviewing soon (complete with recipes!), as well as a half-priced Graze snack box. The final box was a perk claimed from Klout. If you haven’t heard of Klout before, it’s a platform that aggregates the sum of your influence on all the social channels you’re active on. Every once in awhile, you’re eligible to receive cool “perks” offered by different companies. In the past, I’ve gotten dog treats, fast food gift cards, and more based on the topics I’m an “expert” in. This time it was a free Clinique moisturizing lotion – worth $30!

#CheapWeek - Remington's, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

For lunch, I went to Just Salad, in order to finish my research for the upcoming post about best Salads in the Loop. I got an awesome Buffalo Chicken salad and reusable salad bowl… I’ll explain why you should also get this bowl in the upcoming post 🙂

After work, I hung out with a couple of my old Groupon coworkers. Our original plan was to go to Rockit Bar & Grill, but as part of their re-branding, they neglected to create a daily menu of specials. LAME. So instead we hit up an old favorite, Bull & Bear, where we got half-priced appetizers (bacon cheese fries) and half-priced bottles of wine. We ended the night at Highline, where it was surprisingly easy to get a spacious booth in front of a TV to watch the Blackhawks game.

5/20 – Remington’s and Chicago Craft Beer Week

Today was easily the best day of the week.

It started with getting a free book in the mail after participating in an AMA webinar the previous week. I love business books, so this was a really nice surprise.

#CheapWeek - Remington's, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

Then I headed over to Remington’s with a friend for the best lunch I’ve ever had (especially on a work day). We sampled cocktails, appetizers, soup and two different sandwiches in the name of an upcoming Choose Chicago blog post. I’ll save the details for the upcoming review, but know that it was amazing and you need to try it out for yourself.

#CheapWeek - Remington's, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

As my boyfriend is a homebrewer, we couldn’t get through this week without planning on going to a Chicago Craft Beer Week event. I gave him a list to choose from, and he decided on a Medieval Craft Beer dinner at Cobra Lounge. All Rise Brewing operates out of Cobra Lounge, so for $35, we had unlimited beer and a dinner of spit-roasted pig, turkey, roasted veggies, salad, cheese, fruit, and cake. They even gave us to-go boxes at the end so we could enjoy it again the next day! What a deal. I’m told they’re thinking of doing this more often, so you should follow them on their social channels if that’s something of interest to you!

5/21

Everyone needs a day devoid of craziness – this was mine 🙂

5/22 – Pitch Perfect

Today I finally saw Pitch Perfect. The only thing I want to mention here that hasn’t already been said elsewhere on this blog is that if you can get out of the city to see a movie – do it. The further you are away from the city center, the cheaper tickets will be. Instead of paying $12 per person to see Pitch Perfect, it was $12 for two tickets in Forest Park. Probably stating the obvious, but definitely worth mentioning.

5/23 – BLACKHAWKS JERSEY

#CheapWeek - Remington's, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

It was one of my boyfriend’s cousin’s birthday today and again I found myself out in Forest Park. Yes, I know this is CHICAGO Cheap Ass, but Forest Park is accessible via CTA Blue Line. Anyways, we went to O’Sullivan’s Public House and drank while watching the Blackhawks game. They were giving away raffle tickets for an authentic Crawford jersey after the game, and I WON IT. I don’t often win things, so that was pretty awesome.

5/24 – Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival

#CheapWeek - Remington's, Blackhawks, and Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

Source: TransitTees.com

I ended off the week by inviting my sister to spend the day with me. She and my parents live in the burbs, so I love showing them around downtown when they have the chance to come up. We started the day with shopping, then dinner. We checked out Buena Vista in Lakeview, which is BYOB. BYOB restaurants are the greatest thing, and there are so many in Chicago. I’ll write a post about my picks, soon. After dinner, we checked out the Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival. They had cover bands, snacks, and some good shopping. It was a suggested donation of $5, which is pretty typical of neighborhood festivals. We picked up some delicious donuts and some awesome tank tops from Transit Tees. I spent a good chunk of change today, but a lot of it went towards treating my sister who’s birthday is coming up… money well spent!

Don’t just read about good deals – get them yourself! Find of-the-moment updates by liking Chicago Cheap Ass on Facebook.

chicago cheap ass (2)
Food,

Henry’s Swing Club Gave Me Free Food When I Wrote a Haiku about Balls

My love obsession with DMK’s Restaurants started almost a year ago.

Henry's Swing Club

Best friends “sorta” marathon together.

Right before the Chicago Marathon, DMK started their own “sorta” marathon to capitalize on the buzz and to advertise the opening of their new location – Henry’s Swing Club. The “sorta” marathon started at DMK’s original location, DMK Burger Bar in Lakeview. The idea was that you would run (or walk- your prerogative) to Henry’s Swing Club – about 4 miles in total. It was $10 to register, they gave us some awesome hamburger/Chicago flag tshirts, and all you can drink beer when you got to the final location. Oh, and the bibs had hilarious nicknames instead of numbers. A handful of my friends participated and we had a great time at the finish line.

Henry's Swing Club

Chicago Flag/Burger mashup Tshirt

Fast forward to April. I’ve kept up with DMK because I love their creativity and promotions. I noticed they were having a contest with unique prizes for each location in honor of National Haiku Day. Have you ever noticed how there’s something new to celebrate everyday of the year? It’s a little exhausting. But haikus are easy to write, and I had a great idea. For it to make sense, I just need to explain one thing. At the bottom of the menu of craft cocktails and sliders is an interesting entry. “-$2 testicles.” Yes, Henry’s Swing Club will dock $2 from your bill if you eat their balls. They rotate testicles from different animals as a daily special, so you never know what you’re going to get!

Henry's Swing Club

Food Menu at Henry’s Swing Club… notice the balls at the bottom.

Without further ado, the winning haiku:

lil DMK burgs
River North just got better.
Get paid to eat balls

Truly inspired, I know.

There were actually three chosen to go into the final round. I rallied my friends to get votes, but honestly mine was just the best in general. 😉

Now for the fun part. My winnings –

5 sliders
7 cocktails
5 giant pretzels

Just like a haiku!

I decided to take my boyfriend for a date night since he bugged his friends and family just as much as I bugged mine for votes to win.

Henry's Swing Club

Sliders and a giant pretzel at Henry’s Swing Club

The staff at Henry’s Swing Club hooked it up and treated us well. We tried a cocktail from almost every section of the cocktail menu. And tried a lot of interesting sliders. We still have some big pretzels to redeem the next time we come back! Not to mention my boyfriend still has to complete the ball-eating challenge. 🙂

Henry’s Swing Club is a wonderful fresh face in River North. You can chow down and get drunk on classy cocktails without breaking the bank. Definitely has the Chicago Cheap Ass seal of approval!