I generally don't consider West Lakeview the spot for well-heeled nightlife, but a trip to Bungalow Loungebar proved there is hope for cocktail-loving North Siders. It's a bastion of hip in a largely jeans and T-shirt area, serving its signature $10 martinis to a packed house on weekends.
Me and mine arrived just after 9 p.m. on a Saturday night, gleefully snatching one of the last available seats (and by the fireplace, no less). The retro-styled "loungebar" is truly fit for drinking and lounging, though the wise and weary should call ahead to reserve a booth to ensure a place to sit. DJs enhance its clubby-chill atmosphere, and singles seemed to have no trouble mingling. Or drinking, for that matter. The menu consists of a fair survey of wines and beers, with martinis taking the spotlight.
Options range from the classic (manhattans and fresh lime gimlets) to the tasty, as in the Bungalow Blonde, a mix of Ketel One Citroen, Caravella Lemoncello and sweet and sour with a sugar rim. Each month features drink specials, knocking a dollar off the price of select martinis.
Centerstage Reviewer: Kate Schwartz