1538 North Clybourn Avenue
Earls Kitchen + Bar just opened in Lincoln Park. They are located in the ultra modern NewCity Shopping, Entertainment, and Eating Complex on Clybourn and Halsted. In addition to Earls, NewCity tenants include: the largest Mariano’s in the city, a Dick’s Sporting Goods, Kings Bowl, a 14-screen movie theater, retail shopping, and other restaurants. NewCity has a large parking structure just a few steps from everything.
Earls Kitchen + Bar can best be described as Premium Casual. There are several features of this restaurant that make it unique.
Allow me first talk about the physical space. At roughly 8,500 square feet, the restaurant + bar is larger than most and the tall ceilings makes it feel even larger. The restaurant has modern clean design lines with minimalistic decorations. They have several pieces of commissioned art on their walls that work very well in the space. Their lighting level changes throughout the day and into the evening. The lighting in the evening is subdued but not dark.
Simply stated, Earls just feels good when you walk through the doors…the music in the evenings gives it an urban club-like atmosphere.
Earl’s broad appeal is that they offer so many different experiences to their guests. They have several distinct areas that are all seamlessly connected creating one large open area: The main bar, the lounge area, the restaurant, and the patio with a separate bar area. The patio is a terrific place to hang out with friends. They have overhead heaters as well as a couple of fireplaces that take the bite out of those cooler evenings.
One of the best design features is their garage-door style windows that open from floor to ceiling when weather permits. This will certainly give Earls an indoor/outdoor open air feel.
Although they are not technically a ‘Sports Bar’, Earls has a large bar area with televisions hanging around the entire perimeter of the bar. This is a great place to watch a game.
What sets Earls apart is their menu variety, their quality, and their service. The menu ranges from burgers to sushi and everything in between. The menu has the staples as well as items from around the globe. They make everything in-house. The food arrived at our table perfectly prepared, hot, and delicious. If you ever want to see ‘speed’ in action, just stand by the kitchen and watch the staff prepare meals in controlled chaos.
They have several unique cocktails that you must try. I wish I could recommend just one but the several I tasted were all outstanding… all their drinks were generous and creative.
Earls is a professionally run restaurant + bar with highly trained and skilled cooks, servers, and bartenders. The Earls experience is predicated on service. As such, their plan is to have as many as 60 employees available on any given night to ensure they exceed expectations.
In terms of pricing, Earls falls slightly above the traditional casual restaurants and below the premium steakhouses. I felt the pricing was fair value for the variety, quality, service, and experience they provide.
Earls will easily become your new favorite spot. It is an all-in-one destination that’s hard to beat.
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