First up, C.C.Ferns (pictured left). It’s open now.
The pedigree: Brendan Sodikoff’s Hogsalt—it’s linked to California Clipper through the back and to Doughnut Vault through the pastries on the counter.
The scene: A Korean War vet’s rec room circa 1961. Oh, you know: mid-century furniture, South Seas adventure posters, topless tiki mugs, cigars.
You’re there for: Coffee. Stocking up on cigars.
Unless you have a thing for: Spiked coffee, like the rum-enhanced Cuban Latté.
Now on to Haywood Tavern, also open now.
The pedigree: A collusion of Humboldt Park industry vets—a chef and a bar manager, plus a little help from a party photographer. Yes, that old triumvirate.
The scene: Wooden tables. Sturdy bar. The kind of blue-collar beer joint that’s beckoned neighbors with beef tartare, Parisienne gnocchi and Bordeaux for eons. “Blue-collar” may have been inaccurate.
You’re there for: Meeting friends for Aspall dry English cider and sharp-cheddar burgers. Maybe a $5 beer-and-a-shot.
Unless you have a thing for: Drinks with ridiculously extravagant names like the tequila/mezcal/Chartreuse concoction called Execution of Emperor Maximillian.
Please. Call it Max.