Au Cheval Bar & Diner
Photography by Kari Skaflen
Words by Simon Difford on 01-Apr-2015
800 W Randolph Street, (N Halsted Street), Chicago, Illinois, IL 60607, United States
Tel: +1 312 929 4580
Website: View bar's website
Hours: Mon-Sat 11am-1am, Sun 10am-midnight (kitchen closes daily 3pm-5pm and at midnight)
Door: Go early
Style: Restaurant bar
Recommended for: Beer, Food
Price guide: Middling
Food: Full menu
Best described as an upscale diner with an open kitchen come bar. There's a clutch of seats at the end of the bar counter near the entrance dedicated to drinkers but Au Cheval is primarily a restaurant rather than a bar. However, it's a restaurant - well diner - serving good cocktails and an impressive 35 beers on draught. We particularly recommend the local Sweet Leif, a Belgian style pale ale brewed with sencha green tea.
Eight cocktails are on offer: Horse's Neck, Hemingway Daiquiri, Vieux Bonal, Bloody Mary, Old Fashioned, Deux Pommes (bourbon, applejack and cider) Flapper (gin, pepper and amaretto) and Junipero Punch (Junipero Gin, pineapple and amaretto) - the last three being Au Cheval signature drinks. The dozen wines listed cover a broad spectrum with origins as diverse as New York State, Ohio, France, Italy, Lebanon, Greece and South Africa.
The highly regarded food menu ranges from "chopped chicken liver, salted butter & toast" to "roasted marrow bones, beef cheek marmalade and toast" with the obligatory range of burgers and comfort foods such as English breakfast.
This is a great brunch spot but you'll need to be early to secure one of the cherished and unbookable tables.