The Lakefront

Smoked Brisket and Aviations on the Lake

It's All Happening at the Barely Recognizable New Theater on the Lake

By Sarah Freeman ·
None 9 Photos The Lakefront

You know the Theater on the Lake.

It's that grand-looking building that you pass on Lake Shore Drive and wonder if anything ever happens in there.

Wonder no more and step inside the newly renovated historic theater that now houses a snazzy restaurant called the Lakefront. It's now open and here's the slideshow.

Set beneath green steel arches, you'll find a central bar designed for pre-show Aviations. It's surrounded by wooden tables if you'd rather forget the show and let the slow-cooked brisket take center stage instead. Meanwhile, exposed brick and floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the Lake and Lincoln Park act as a pretty seductive backdrop.

Responsible for that brisket is a man you might know. Chef Cleetus Friedman of Fountainhead fame runs the show at this contemporary American tavern. He's doing things like serving whiskey bacon steaks in a cherry maple reduction and escargot in cider butter. They should keep you occupied until theater season starts up again this summer.

In the meantime, maybe just one more round of cocktails while taking in the view. Try the Libowski, a vodka cocktail spiked with espresso liquor and topped with bourbon cream, or a glass of the chef's own Imperial Dunkelweizen brewed in collaboration with Stone Brewing.

Looks like you might not be going anywhere after all.

Sarah Freeman

Sarah Freeman is often accused of hiding secrets in her hair. She can make any cocktail, as long as that cocktail is a rye Old Fashioned, and has never met a saison she didn’t like.


The Lakefront
2401 N Lake Shore Dr
(at W Fullerton Ave)
Chicago, IL, 60614


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