Travel & Outdoor
Chicago magazine

Chicago magazine November 2017

Since 1970, readers have turned to Chicago magazine for expertise on Chicago’s dining, shopping, and entertainment scenes, as well as for award-winning reporting on the key people and issues in the city. Get your digital subscription to Chicago magazine today.

United States
Chicagoland Publishing Company
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12 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
on chicagomag.com

Shiny high-rises are going up on every corner, and enticing real estate proposals are trickling in, but the owner of this wood-bedecked tavern under the L at Lake and Wells says he’s not biting. “Every other year, somebody else gives us a juicy offer to get out,” Mike Shaker says. “We’re the only corner left down here that’s not developed, but I’m not ready to retire.” At nearly 50 years old, Monk’s comes with its fair share of lore—including that it hosted the city’s first Jewish religious ceremony and that a group of regulars stuffed one of the books lining the shelves with $1 bills. But it’s also changed with the times. When Shaker took over the bar in 1978, it served just a single line of Schlitz; now it offers…

1 min.
a cut above

The last time we ranked the city’s steakhouses was in 2013. So much has changed since then, but one thing that hasn’t: the labor that goes into our covers, the goal always to arrive at something original and eye-catching. Once our dining editors decided on Bavette’s as the No. 1 selection, deputy design director Emily Johnson began planning two cover concepts. (The one we didn’t use is pictured above.) But things never go as planned, and a steakhouse that has earned the top position doesn’t get there by having anything less than the most exacting standards. Emily spent the weekend before the shoot buying props: plates, glassware, butcher blocks. None were allowed; the restaurant insisted that everything photographed had to be actual Bavette’s tableware. An electric blue backdrop for the photo caused the…

1 min.
inside peek

CONTRIBUTORS Former Tribune writer Mark Caro (above right) profiled Jim DeRogatis, who has continually reported on the sex-crime allegations against R. Kelly (page 90). “In an era of quick-hit media, you’ve got to admire the doggedness it takes to pursue a story for 17 years,” says Caro. “He gets scoops because he built sources over time.” Illustrator Diego Patiño (left) captured that tenacity in his rendering of the music critic. “I wanted to make it look like an old, gritty poster you’d see at a train station or rock club—very street oriented,” says Patiño. “In the story, R. Kelly is almost a ghost. My intention was to portray him lurking in the back, haunting DeRogatis.” BEHIND THE SHOOT Photographer Taylor Castle squared up against Northwestern basketball coach and onetime Duke point guard Chris…

1 min.
talk to us

ON ROD BLAGOJEVICH’S LIFE BEHIND BARS Thank you for this elegantly written, textured psychological profile of Blago [“Inmate No. 40892-424,” October]. His problem is the same one from the beginning: a failure to admit his wrongdoings. MadKatFever on Chicagomag.com What a waste of space. Blago is where he belongs. He is a convicted felon. What next, a sympathetic piece on Jeff Fort? Peter Bella on Facebook Setting aside judgment on his crimes, I am impressed with Blagojevich’s ability to hold on to hope. I cannot help but think that we are wasting resources and lives paying to house this man behind bars. Brad Antcliff on Chicagomag.com Rod is still delusional. He can’t admit he was using his office for personal benefit. It’s not a crime to be a terrible governor—or an idiot— but he was both. I…

5 min.
last madigan standing

Business, politics, real estate, and city life: What you need to know this month This summer, House speaker Michael Madigan dealt Governor Bruce Rauner one of the greatest political humiliations in Illinois history. The Wizard of West Lawn persuaded 10 Republicans to join the Democrats in overriding the governor’s veto of his budget—a budget that included a 32 percent tax increase and none of the labor reforms Rauner had demanded since the moment he was sworn in. The result of this two-and-a-half-year standoff should have been no surprise. Rauner, who has devoted his life to accumulating money, was a political amateur getting pantsed by one of the greatest political tacticians who has ever operated under a capitol dome—a man who has devoted his life to accumulating power. It was like the scene…

1 min.
the bulls’ new hope

With Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade, and Rajon Rondo gone, the empty vessel that is the 2017–18 Bulls roster provides the perfect environment for one new player to flourish: former Minnesota Timberwolf Zach LaVine. Sure, ESPN projects his team will finish dead last in its conference. Which leaves fans little to root for but chaos and aesthetic glory—but that’s exactly what LaVine, a player who is capable of everything (except defense … yet), provides. At 22, he is already an all-time great dunker and can score from anywhere on the court while oscillating between point and shooting guard. With a blank slate of teammates, LaVine will be able to flex his athleticism, playmaking, and 3-point range (he has shot a respectable 39 percent from beyond the arch over the past two seasons).…