If you are craving to be that inner French girl and dream of walking through the streets of Paris, stopping for a glass of wine at a little outside cafe, then this girl’s guide is perfect for you.
I’m also a huge fan of French food. I love to try different French restaurants all over Chicago and nothing is better than a cozy French bakery or a cute little patio. There are lots of great French restaurants in the city but I chose these five because of their decor and patio and their food. They really make you feel like you could be in a different place.
I’m writing this guide as a sit and enjoy a delicious almond croissant in the new Maison Marcel French Bakery in Lakeview. This is my first time here and I know already that this will become one of my favorite new spots in my neighborhood. I love the decor, it’s very comfortable and shabby chic. The staff is extremely welcoming and there are plenty of cozy areas to sit and relax. During the week it’s a great place to come and work for a few hours and enjoy a cup of coffee and a pastry. Add Maison Marcel to your list and go asap!
Mon Ami Gabi
Ok yes, I know Mon Ami Gabi is more of a chain restaurant but the food is really good and I choose this restaurant because of the Lincoln Park location. The patio in the summer is beautiful and located in the equally beautiful Belden Stratford right across from Lincoln Park. You can almost imagine that you are staying at an old glamorous hotel in Paris (yes, the Belden Stratford used to be a hotel!)
* Happy Hour! It’s not on the patio unfortunately but you can enjoy half-priced wines and appetizers at the bar every week day from 4 pm to 7 pm.
Did you know La Creperie is the oldest creperie in the U.S.? I’ve mentioned this place before on my hidden gems in Chicago but it’s one of my favorites and I love the outdoor garden patio. It’s so quaint and peaceful and a great place to enjoy a glass of wine and a yummy crepe.
* Tuesday special! Come with your girlfriends on Tuesday evenings for half-priced bottles of wine.
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There’s nothing better than a great patio and great food and Le Colonial has both. I love their cozy patio in the heart of the gold coast so yes that means great people watching. It’s the perfect sidewalk cafè with French-Vietnamese inspired food that is so delicious and if you go you have to get one of their famous lychee martinis.
Pierrot Gourmet at The Peninsula
Pierrot Gourmet is a European cafè so not strictly French food but I choose this cafè to be my the guide because their patio is probably one of my favorites. As soon as you sit on this patio you will see why. I love the flowers and the decor and you really do feel like you are sitting on a sidewalk cafè in Europe. It’s the perfect place to sit and enjoy a glass of wine on a summer afternoon.
P.S. I also I’m adding to my A Girl’s Guide: List of Places in Chicago to Try, Le Petit Paris and the new Margeaux Brasserie inside the Waldorf Astoria. I will let you know how these restaurants are once I go.