Wicker Park is a hidden gem for most tourists and Chicago locals. This neighborhood was originally called the home of the hipsters, but over the years has become gentrified. It has evolved into a trendy area filled with upscale boutiques, thrift stores, art galleries, record stores, and restaurants. We hope this guide will help you the next time you feel like exploring the city, or deciding on where to take a friend who’s visiting. Here are the places in Wicker Park you can’t miss.
WHERE TO SHOP
Located at 1509 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
If you’re looking for some Soho vibes in Chicago, this is the perfect boutique. Eskell houses clothing and accessories from up and coming New York designers. It can get a bit pricey, but the pieces you find are so unique it’s hard trying to justify why you shouldn’t splurge.
Located at 1519 North Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
This is where label lovers come to rejoice. You can find high quality and on trend used designer pieces for much less than the retail price. What makes the thrifting experience special at Crossroads is the clothes are reflective of the style in Wicker Park and urban trends found on the streets of Chicago.
Located at 1478 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60642
Similar to Crossroads, Buffalo Exchange offers new and high quality recycled fashion. You can bring in those pieces in your closet you’ve only worn once, trade them in or get money for them right on the spot. The price ranges at Crossroads tend to depend on the quality and label of the clothing. Still, whether you’re a thrift store junkie or not, you’re bound to find something you love.
Located at 1323 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
It’s all about the 70s now, but you can never go wrong with some “Friends” inspired 90s style. Kokorokoko is not your average thrift store because they specialize in only buying and selling 90s clothing. If you’re looking to spice up your wardrobe with some vintage threads or channel your inner Rachel Green, Kokorokoko should be first on your list.
WHAT TO EAT
Located at 1560 N. Damen Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
Donuts are your best friend, at least Stan’s Donuts are. Whether you want a donut, cup of coffee or gelato, Stan’s never disappoints. With a variety of flavors like pistachio biscotti, Nutella banana and double chocolate, you can satisfy both the classic and adventurous taste lover in you.
Located at 1470 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
For those breakfast and brunch enthusiasts, this place has your name written all over it. Ever since The Bongo Room opened 21 years ago, it has been serving the community with dishes like the Chocolate Tower French Toast, Cranberry and Orange Pancakes, Banana Pancakes, and their classic breakfast burrito. Hopefully, your mouth is watering at the thought of those just as much as ours are.
Located at 1747 N Damen Ave. Chicago, IL 60647
For those late night sweet tooth cravings, Mindy’s Hot Chocolate is the answer to all your prayers. They have everything from cookies, pies and cakes to ice cream, sorbet and milkshakes. If you’re not looking to get your daily sugar fix, Mindy’s offers lunch options starting from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. as well as brunch on the weekends.
Located at 1927 W North Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
If the question is pizza, then the answer is always yes (at least in our book). We all love some classic Chicago deep dish, but sometimes we just want to get a little more adventurous. Piece offers speciality thin crust pizza and their own brewed beer. After a full day of shopping, Piece is the perfect way to end your Wicker Park trip.
WHAT TO DO
Night Life/ Live Music
Located at 1572 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
Double Door has been providing the neighborhood with music for almost 22 years, and it has become a staple in the community. Acts like Kanye West, The Killers, The Rolling Stones, John Legend, and Chance the Rapper have all played shows here. Double Door is the place to start, if you’re looking to immerse yourself in the culture and night life of Wicker Park.
Located at 2011 W North Ave. Chicago, IL 60647
Subterranean is another can’t miss spot for live music fans. You can get a taste of a multitude of music genres from reggae to EDM to alternative to pop. Who knows you might even walk out at the end of the night with a new favorite artist.
Located at 1379 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
Reckless Records, the classic Chicago record shop. This is where you’ll find most of Chicago’s record enthusiasts. There are three locations in the city, but the recent remodeling of the Wicker Park location makes it the biggest location. With what seems like a never ending sea of records, it never disappoints on providing an amazing selection of both new and old. They make spending hours flipping through vinyls really easy.
Located at 1272 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
If you’re the type of person who gets overwhelmed with having too many options, Shuga is a great alternative to Reckless. It is much smaller than Reckless, but still offers the quality record lovers look for. They make the record shopping experience memorable with their hand painted murals done by local artists, and careful selection of new and vintage records.
Located at 1564 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
Myopic Bookstore holds a special place in the Wicker Park neighborhood and Chicago. It is one of the oldest bookstores the city has, with more books than one could ever dream of. You can choose to explore one or all three floors of the bookstore, where you’re guaranteed to find a book for all your interests.
Located at 1389 N Milwaukee Ave. Chicago, IL 60622
You don’t have to be an art aficionado to enjoy the art at the Jackson Junge Gallery. Throughout the year, the gallery has guest exhibits featuring Chicago artists as well as others. There is also a collection of art for purchase, so who knows you might just walk out with a new painting for your home.
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