avec chicago
Image: Avec
SUNDAY - THURSDAY: 3:30 P.M. - 1 A.M. | FRIDAY - SATURDAY: 3:30 P.M. - 2 A.M.
312.377.2002 | WEBSITE

Paul Kahan’s first casual spot, Avec, has been an industry favorite since it opened in 2003. Here Midwestern interpretations of Mediterranean classics are beautifully presented in a sparse, rail-road style dining room with communal seating. Come for a full meal of small plates, or just pop in for a snack and glass of wine before heading out to the many other destinations in the West Loop. The tight collection of around 150 wines—most of which fall well under $100—stays focused on Portugal, Spain, France and Italy. If you’re on the hunt for value, head straight for the oft-neglected wines of Portugal, the Basque Country or the Canary Islands.

Known For
  • Spanish wine
  • Portuguese wine
  • tapas
What to drink
Ask. The informed staff can steer you in the right direction, but a bottle of Txakoli or rosé—even in the colder months—is always a solid bet with the food.
West Loop
The wine list is beyond fantastic, but for the truly curious wine drinker, there are some wonderful discoveries to be had all over the beverage program, particularly in beer and cider.