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Five Tasty Ways to Toast 2018

Ariel Cheung | December 18, 2017 | Feature Features

Ring in 2018 with some of the best eats Chicago has to offer with this list of New Year's Eve festivities. Is there a more satisfying way to start off the new year?
Avec's four-course New Year's Eve dinner features braised lamb shank with sumac, pomegranate and fennel.

Keep it Hot Like Havana: As we hunker down for winter in Chicago, enjoy the tropical trappings of the island-inspired Havana Night at Billy Sunday in Logan Square. The Cuban classics will be available in small bites, giving you plenty of room to sample ropa vieja, empanadas and Cubano sandwiches. And what’s a party without some themed cocktails? Try the Hemingway daiquiri or Cuba Libre. 5pm-2am, no tickets required, 3143 W. Logan Blvd.

Ducking the Crowd: Over in Hyde Park, Chef James Martin will offer a four-course tasting menu at the highly rated A10. Dine on fresh oysters, filet mignon and duck ham served with duck confit and quail eggs, among other options. Wine pairings are offered with each course for a little extra, or diners can sip on specialty cocktails and Champagne. Dishes are also available a la carte. 5pm-midnight, $65 per person, 1462 E. 53rd St.

Ella Enchanted: The luxurious setting at Lakeview’s Ella Elli seems tailor-made for a New Year’s Eve bash, complete with a velvet couch aside the fireplace and private, mirrored alcoves. The restaurant will offer a four-course tasting menu to send off 2017 in style. Starting with Skull Island prawns, the dinner follows with egg yolk gnocchi sprinkled with shaved black truffles and a bone-in filet. Too sleepy to make it to midnight? Check out the brunch with mimosa bottle service on both New Year’s Eve and Day. 5-11pm, tasting menu $85 per person, $40 wine pairing, 1349 W. Cornelia Ave.

Spill Your Secrets (Just Not Your Drink): There’s nothing more delicious than a secret, which makes the Ada Street Secret Society party in West Town a tempting treat. The open bar will offer craft spirits to go with Chef Michael Kornick’s menu of passed hors d’oeuvres ranging from an oyster po’ boy crostini to a butternut squash and apple soup shooter. Meatball sliders with minted Greek yogurt sauce, and lamb ribs slathered in a habanero crema sauce round out the elemental-themed menu. 9pm-1am, tickets $100, 1664 N. Ada St.

On the Lamb: Avec recently doubled its space with a second-floor addition, so enjoy the extra elbow room while devouring a lusciously lamb-heavy menu from Chef Perry Hendrix. Start off with lamb tartare drizzled with tahini yogurt and served with smoky urfa chili before choosing between fennel braised lamb shank with sumac and pomegranate, or octopus tagine. Other options include mussels escabeche and gnocchi with roasted hen-of-the-wood mushrooms. There will be two seating options for the four-course dinner and a Champagne toast to a delicious new year. 6pm and 9pm, tickets $99, 615 W. Randolph St.


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