When you reach a certain age, the lure of the nightclub is no more. That’s not to say, of course, that you’ve suddenly gone boring, but your tastes have certainly changed.
Your typical outings consist of indulging at the hottest new restaurants and cozy neighborhood spots or getting into the groove at your favorite live music venue. But every now and then, you need to spice it up with something a little extra.
- Every Thursday evening, for example, members of the Chicago chapter of A Small World gather for cocktails and conversation at a different venue around town. Choices for the roving cocktail party vary from the red-hot and new (Bavette’s, Untitled) to the tried and true (Pops For Champagne, Japonais). The crowd: Smart, sophisticated and diverse; mostly single. The cost: The best part is that there’s no cost to join ASW.
- Chicago Cabaret Project features offbeat performances in The Attic at Hamburger Mary's on a regular basis. And while it’s an interactive experience, the Underground Soirée Series (pictured above) is the collective’s jammin’ event that’s gained a cult following since launching in 2011. The traveling event occurs at a different historic Chicago mansion with a live cabaret show, cocktail party and appetizers. Details on the location are kept under wraps until the day of the event. The next party happens at 8pm Feb. 9 in the Gold Coast. The crowd: Diverse, theater-goers, couples and singles. The cost: Purchase the $75 tickets right here.
- For three years, MK has hosted the super successful Wine on Wednesdays, where guests experience tastings from a specific wine region. Each wine is paired with a bite, and the selections change every week. The event is held in the restaurant’s bar area and lounge 6-9pm Wednesdays, and it gets pretty lively. The crowd: Wine enthusiasts and those looking for a good happy hour venue. The cost: $25.
- There’s more of a laid-back vibe at Ada Street during two of its most popular events, “movie night” and the backgammon tournament. At 8pm Mondays, the stylish restaurant and cocktail lounge shows classic films, ranging from action thrillers to romantic flicks. If you think you’ve got the skills, sign up for Ada Street’s monthly backgammon tournament, which you’ll need to do in advance. The crowd: Foodies, couples and groups of singles. The cost: Movie night is free and so is the popcorn; it’s $25 for those participating in backgammon, and that includes one alcoholic beverage.
- Here’s a neat concept to check out if you have the connections. The Sunday Dinner Club (pictured above) takes place several times a month in different people’s homes. Because the events happen in private homes, potential guests must have some sort of hookup in order to RSVP (confirmed guests, hosts, Sunday Dinner Club founders). The menus are three to five courses, and the food is locally sourced and made from scratch by the team set to open Honey Butter Fried Chicken. The crowd: Varies by event, but if you get in, you’ll know at least one person! The cost: $45-$85; BYOB.