My dad told me this weekend would suck for living on the Plaza. I quickly informed him that this was the BEST weekend to live on the Plaza and one of my favorite weekends of the year.
There are many things I love about the Plaza but, the Plaza Art Fair is by far my favorite thing that ever happens in this neck of the woods. But, when you're there it's tough to know where to go for the best eats and drinks and prices. That's where I come in.
First let's take a look at last years winners:
1st Place Food – Brio Tuscan Grille
2nd Place Food – Capital Grille
3rd Place Food – Kona Grill
1st Place Booth – Chuy's
2nd Place Booth – Bo Ling's
3rd Place Booth – O'Dowd's
Best in Show – Gram & Dun
Just because these booths won last year does not mean they will win this year. So, let's give them all a chance. Also, what does one have to do to win the best booth and best in show? I can obviously understand how you win the food category. But, come on! Where's the prizing for the drinks?
** I am running out to grab the rest of the booth info and will update this shortly! Enjoy your Plaza Art Fair shennanigans and say hi if you see me!**
The Capital Grille
Fiorella's Jack Stack Barbecue
Fogo de Chao
This is another cash only booth. They do have great beer prices which may be worth the $3 atm fee. You can get bottled or draft beer for $5. This is everything from Bud Light to Tank 7. Sangria is $6 and their Caipirinha cocktail is $8. It's a little pricy but it sounds delicious!
Gram & Dun
Now, this is one of my favorite places on the Plaza so, i'm a little hesitant to enjoy it in booth form. A big part of the appeal is the atmosphere of Gram & Dun. Obviously, that doesn't translate to the booth but, the prices do. You can get a Bud Light or Coors Light for $4. A Boulevard Wheat for $5 and a Tank 7 for $6. Not bad prices for beer. Wine is $7 and their two special cocktails are $9. You can get the amazing asian chicken wings for $8 here. They are most definitely worth it.
At the Kona booth you can get some sushi, or other assorted light snacks ranging from $4 - $12. their beers are $5 with Angry Orchard cans coming in at $4. You can get a margarita for $5 and wine for $6. Not bad prices but nothing spectacular.
If you have been wanting to try Republica this may be a great time. They have a few of their tapas available. But, a bit pricer than a few of the other booths at $8-$11. Miller Lite is $4 and you can get a Boulevard Wheat for $5. Bud Light is $6 so, that's the weirdest beer price breakdown i've seen all day.
The Oak Grilled Cheeseburger here was smelling real good last night and might just be worth the $8. Don't come here for a beer though. Beers start at $6 for Bud or Miller Light with Boulevard beers at $7. Wine is also $7 but you can get a barel aged old fashioned here for $9. You might hit a peak level of cool if you strut your stuff around the art fair with an old fashioned browsing some amazing art work.
Tomfooleries Restaurant and Bar
Central St. Restaurants
Classic Cup Cafe
You can get a 24 oz. beer here for $4! You can get a non-draught beer for $3. That's one of the best beer deals at the Plaza Art Fair. You can get a coffee for $2 or $3 here as well. Great pit stop for refueling when you need a break from drinking. Now, one of the best refillable glasses is here. You can get a moscow mule for $15... KEEP THE COPPER MUG and refill for $5. This is not a drill. Do not walk. Run quickly. They have a few other drinks (sangria, mimosas, wine, bloody mary) all available for $5. Note: the sangria royale is $6 for some reason. Worth it? I will find out.
Coopers Hawk Winery
Fred P. Ott's
Ward Parkway Restaurants
Brio Tuscan Grille
The fruit and cheese plate here is calling my name. It's $7 but maybe it's worth it? I had the margherita panini and it left a little to be desired for costing $8. But, if you're in the mood for some past you can get that here for $8. Now, for the drinks! 24 oz draft beer is $5. Another great beer deal. Wine is $6 and a double cocktail is $9 (a single is $7). They don't have any specialty cocktails but, the $9 double is a good deal if you have your favorite cocktail and don't want to adventure. The sign says $1 off refills of beer, wine, and cocktails when you show your brio badge. What's a brio badge though? Is it worth getting $1 off? Not sure but more power to you if you have one!
This is a CASH ONLY booth. It does have a TV attached so I guess if you can see it with the sun glare that's cool. You can get Tank7 for $5 here. That's the same amount you would pay for a Bud Light at this booth so that's an obvious choice. They have a few beers for $6 (including Stella, Boulevard Wheat and Stiegler Radler). Mimosas here are also $6. This price seems a little steep for a mimosa but maybe it's in a bigger cup? I shall investigate. And if you want to throw down $7 you can get a glass of wine or a moscow mule. Pizza by the slice is $5 so this may be the best pit stop for soaking up a little bit of the alcohol you will undoubtedly be downing.
The Melting Pot
McCormick & Schmick's
Your experience at McCormick's is undoubtedly going to be a more expensive venture. But, you can still get beers anywhere from $5-$7. The best deal here is by far the refillable cup. You pay $16 and refills are only $10. It's a pretty good cup too. You are limited to what you can have it filled with. I highly recommend the raspberry mule over the blood orange margarita.
O'Dowds Little Dublin
Cocktails here are $8 and beer ranges from $5-$6. They do have cheeseburger sliders for $5 and a steak soup for $3 which is pretty damn good. This is definitely more of a food booth but if you are in the mood for a cocktail and already in line then you can fill that need as well. Definitely a better beer booth though.
Chicken tacos for $7! One of my favorite Zocalo dishes. I will definitely be hitting them up today. Budlight here is $4. There are a few beers for $5 and stella artois AND stella cidre are $6. If you want a cidre the Stella cidre is one of my favorites. I know for a fact there is a fish bowl here. But, I have no idea how much it costs. I will find out and update later. You can also buy a refillable boot for $14 (refills are $12). The boots are pretty big but they are kind of obnoxious. Mimosas are $5 and their other cocktails go up to $7. Overall, not a bad booth.