Easter weekend brought a Windy City friend back to the burgh. We wanted to meet up and chat and decided upon the Wine Loft, located in Southside Works.
There are plenty of parking garages near the Works, which is nice – getting there is not quite as stressful as getting yourself parked somewhere on Carson Street on a Saturday night. The garages charge $1 an hour at night and on the weekends.
The Wine Loft is located in the same building as the theater, but on the riverside of the complex. The decor is lovely. Warm golden light, interesting light fixtures, many cozy chairs and sofas. The place was fairly crowded at 10PM on Saturday – however, my friend and I were still able to grab two seats near the door.
The Wine Loft has a ‘small plates’ menu and a decent wine list. I do think the markup on the wine is a bit high. I had a glass of the Firesteed Pinot Noir (Oregon) – $15. I actually rarely consider markup (this is a bad habit) but had heard rumors of this place being pricey so decided to look into it. The wine list did not list vintages. The Pinot did not taste aged – a quick internet search has a 2006 Firesteed going for under $20. Hmm. The wine was pleasant though and I happily nursed the glass.
I am not sure most of the crowd was really there to discover an amazing wine – they were more likely there for the atmosphere and/or to impress a lady friend. The crowd was a little more mature than you might find at Jack’s. Glasses ranged from $9-$15. They also have a full bar. The place started to clear around 12AM – I think groups started to drift down Carson toward more dancing and noise. My friend and I were able to carry on a conversation the whole night though – nice to be in the action but still able to talk.
The Wine Loft coupled with the new Hofbrauhaus is helping to extend the life of the Southside Works past the dinner and movie crowd. I like it.