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Sunset Pavilion, Lake Zurich

Featured Article

It's Five O'Clock Somewhere

A Guide on Where To Slake a Mean Thirst

Article by Michael Beightol

Photography by Michael Beightol, Stephen Neilson & Provided

Originally published in SW Lake Lifestyle

It’s summertime and the living’s easy which means more time to head over to a favorite watering hole or try someplace new. There’s a wealth of options nearby, and some iconic venues for the more adventurous.

  1. Overlooking Lake Zurich is Sunset Pavilion, built by the village and staffed by Scoreboard Bar & Grill, a go-to venue for leisurely sipping, small bites and great sunset views of a sparkling lake.
  2. Summerfest in Milwaukee is the granddaddy of large-scale North American music festivals. For 55 years Summerfest has sprawled along Lake Michigan, walking distance from downtown with 12 stages of non-stop musical entertainment.
  3. Lindy’s Landing on Bangs Lake has consistently provided good eats, a great drinks menu, weekend live entertainment and views of the water. There’s probably something to like for just about everybody at this venerable Wauconda institution.
  4. Long known as the biggest Happy Hour in the Midwest, Wrigley Field’s bleachers have more food and drink options with great views of all the action on the field (and in the stands).
  5. In Cary on Highway 14 at the corner of Three Oaks Road is Spirit Water, the brainchild of Tim Kovac, the man behind “Not Your Father’s Root Beer.” His latest venture is dedicated to brewing AND distilling.
  6. Around here we like our lake views. Wauconda’s reimagined Side Lot has a beer garden that catches Bangs Lake breezes along with a full menu that appeals to “foodies” (as profiled in our June issue).
  7. Long Grove’s Buffalo Creek Brewing has established itself as a must-visit venue for the beer cognoscenti. Most of the beer is brewed in the German style, and the taproom suits that theme perfectly. From the hand-hammered copper bar to the wood paneled walls, there’s plenty of long community tables inside. Out the back door it’s like stepping into a Bavarian pine forest with deck and lawn seating, fire pits and frequent entertainment. You can even bring your dog, inside or out. Hungry? There are snacks at the bar, or you can order from your favorite food delivery app. For a real treat take a short stroll across the parking lot to the Chatterbox, a Long Grove institution.
  8. Phase 3 Brewing is hard to find, but many believe it’s worth the hunt. Tucked away in the Lake Zurich Industrial Park at 932 Donata Court, the taproom entrance is the very last doorway along a long row of offices. Stepping inside there’s a somewhat underwhelming but serviceable bar. The real action is through the door into the working brewery. Ask the bartender about the tasting menu to construct your own experience with ales, lagers or hard seltzers.
  • Lindy's Landing, Wauconda
  • Summerfest, Milwaukee
  • Buffalo Creek, Long Grove
  • spirit WATER, Cary
  • Wrigley Field Bleachers, Chicago
  • Phase Three Brewing, Lake Zurich
  • The Side Lot, Wauconda
  • Sunset Pavilion, Lake Zurich