By Kristin Boza
December — the most wonderful time of the year, right? Parties, cocktails, small bites, cozy dinners, and time well spent with family and friends. This dreamy, joyful month is not at all stressful, unless of course you’re the one actually planning and presenting the parties that will make magical memories.
Lucky for us, we live in a neighborhood filled with unique creators, marvelous shops, and dazzling catering options to help us through every step of the party planning process.
Don’t delay! Contact these local businesses now to ensure they can accommodate your needs this holiday season!
Crowd Pleasing Small Bites and Desserts
Stay on-trend with beautiful and delicious charcuterie boards to make your holiday table a yummy gathering spot! Mika Hauschild of Mia Formaggio offers premium charcuterie meats, artisan cheeses, seasonal fruit, olives, nuts, spread, honey, and garnishes. Call 951-515-2634 or DM on Instagram @MiaFormaggio.
Desserts are one of the sweetest parts of a holiday gathering. Sweet Freaks, 9927 S. Wood St., creates hand-made chocolates and other festive candies sure to satisfy a crowd at a gathering or as a delicious stocking stuffer. Call 773-610-6320 on Thurs. and Fri., 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., or Sat., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. to order.
KimmyKakes, 10225 S. Western, customizes beautiful and tasty cakes and creamy cheesecakes perfect for a sit-down dessert or buffet. They also offer hearty salads and sandwiches that can complement a holiday luncheon. Call 773-629-8711 to place an order.
Turn the tables on holiday parties and plan a brunch! Beverly Bakery, 10528 S. Western, is here to help stock your table with muffins, cookies, doughnuts, and a wide variety of take-and-bake dishes, plus exceptional coffees. Call 773-233-5580 to place an order.
Cocktails & Brews
Set your table with sparkling essential entertaining items from Beverly Dry Goods, recently moved to 1810 W. 103rd St. If you’re planning to play mixologist at your event, check out their perfectly curated variety of cocktail mixers and bar supplies. Call 773-701-6029 for more info.
If you want to leave the mixology to the experts, hire Steering Cocktails to craft uniquely themed cocktails. Steering Cocktails also offers small batches of cocktails to-go, so you can take and serve yourself. Visit SteeringCocktails.com to learn more.
Beer is always on the menu, so make it a hearty one. Open Outcry Brewing Co., 10934 S. Western, offers crowlers of their famous brews to keep those pint glasses full. Call 773-629-6055 to find out what’s on tap.
Horse Thief Hollow, 10426 S. Western offers 4-packs of four of their customer-favorite brews. Stop in during open hours or call 773-779-BREW.
Make Your Own Playlist
Forget Spotify and lean on the cozy sound of a crackling vinyl to get your party going. Beverly Phono Mart, 1808 W. 103rd St., offers new and “I-Used-To-Love” records in a variety of genres, including Christmas. Visit BeverlyPhonoMart.com for more information.
Beverly Records, 11612 S. Western, has been Chicago’s favorite place for vinyl since 1967! This store has the music you’re looking for, including rare records. Got a decades-old Christmas tune rattling around in your head? Call Beverly Records at 773-779-0066 and they’re sure to track it down.
Food: The Heart of Every Holiday Party
Food is the star at holiday events, and there are some excellent eats along our local streets.
Swanson’s, 2414 W. 103rd St., offers its famous cheese ball, a must-have for any party. But they also have a variety of catering options. Call 773-239-1197 to find out more.
Whether you’re planning a luncheon menu of delectable sandwiches and salads, a generous family-style meal of Italian specialties, or a buffet of holiday favorites, Calabria, 1905 W. 103rd St., fits the bill. If you’re hosting a small dinner party, check out Calabria’s specialties from Gemma Foods. Call 773-396-5800 to order.
Throwing a party is a great excuse to load your table with the authentic Italian specialties from Franconello’s, 10222 S. Western. On the menu is everything from appetizers to salads and entrees to dessert. Call 773-881-4100 to order.
If your crowd is coming hungry, order hearty portion meals from Fox’s Beverly Pub, 9956 S. Western. Their catering menu offers popular pasta party pans, delicious main dish options, and a taste-tempting variety of side dishes. Order by calling 773-239-3212.
Entertaining at home is easy with the help of Barraco’s, 2105 W. 95th St. They offer four choices of family packages, as well as pasta by the pan and meats by the pound with all the sandwich fixings. Add on salads and appetizer trays to round out your holiday meal. Call 773-881-4040 to order now.
Expecting unexpected guests? Head to County Fair, 10800 S. Western, and grab a tray of delectable fried chicken, trays of fresh veggies, cheese, and fruit, and yummy dips and side dishes — you can even add some flowers to decorate your table. Call 773-238-5576 to find out more.
The Party is in the Details
Don’t forget to add in all the special touches! Haven 1890, 2501 W. 103rd St., is filled to the brim with home décor, gifts, premium party goods, and artisan products. This shop is a must-stop to complete your tablescape. Call 708-793-7420 or email email@example.com.
Take the pressure off of setting up for and, more importantly, cleaning up after your celebration. Contact Janice Griffin at Party Pros, 708-227-5979, for this essential party hack.
Don’t Arrive Empty Handed
If you’re a party guest, don’t forget to give your hostess a little something to show your appreciation. For unique hostess gifts, head to Turkey, 9913 S. Walden Pkwy., for thoughtfully curated and ethically created gifts, accessories, and children’s items. Call 773-941-4751 for holiday hours.
If you want to get your hostess something made right here by local artisans, check out Made Artisan Collaborative, 1802 W. 103rd St. You’ll find beautifully crafted items ranging from accessories and apparel to bath items and original art. Call 773-701-6878 for more info.
In addition to their outstanding custom framing services, The Heritage Gallery, 1907 W. 103rd St., features a variety of gifts and décor, from eclectic to elegant. Call 773-233-0084 to find out more.
Get Your Sparkle On
The hostess’ outfit is just as important as the rest of the party details! Thankfully we have several cute shops where you can find a great holiday outfit.
Emilia Gray, 2501 W. 103rd St., offers current, classic, and casual women’s clothing and the essential pieces you’ll want to wear time and time again.
Belle Up Boutique, 1915 W. 103rd St., showcases chic women’s clothing, maternity and nursing wear, and shoes, accessories and more. They also offer online shopping at BelleUp.com.
For trendy, stylish, and affordable clothing, jewelry, hats, and more, visit Jazzy Ladies Jewels Boutique, 2261 W. 111th St. Call 773-440-2268 for more information.
Glam Time is Now
After choosing the perfect outfit, enjoy a spa day, mani/pedi, or a haircut and color. Make your appointment today at Tranquility, 9908 S. Walden Pkwy., TranquilitySalonCompany.com; Everything’s Relative, 10548 S. Western, EverythingsRelativeSalon.com; or Color Me Beauty Bar, 1810 ½ W. 99th St., ColorMeBeautyBar.com.
For the guys, check out Swanny’s Barbershop, 10450 S. Western, for a stylish haircut and beard shapeup. Make an appointment online at SwannysBarbershop.com.
Create a Gorgeous Tablescape
Dazzle your guests with fabulous florals and décor designed and created just for you at The Bloom Bar, 9909 S. Walden Pkwy. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Grab the most beautiful poinsettias you’ve ever seen at Steuber’s, 2654 W. 111th St. They can create exquisite arrangements and bouquets for your party or to give as gifts. Call 773-238-2013 to place an order.
Make the Day After Feel Better
Post-party recovery breakfasts are essential to keep the holiday spirit going. Check out Horse Thief Hollow, 10426 S. Western, for an excellent brunch. Start off with freshly made beignets and mimosas and finish with a choice of simple to elegant entrees. Call 773-779-2739 for a reservation.
There’s nothing like a great burger to start the day after an indulgent party. Nicky’s of Beverly, 10500 S. Western, also offers many outstanding sandwiches, salads, entrees, and side dishes.
For a breakfast classic, head to The Original Pancake House, 10427 S. Western, for their specialty Dutch Baby pancake, or any of the dozens of omelettes, egg dishes, pancakes, waffles, skillets, and any other thing you can imagine for breakfast!
If your stomach is too sensitive for a hearty breakfast, check out LAB Nutrition, 2025 W. 95th St., to press restart and enjoy healthy smoothies, energy teas, good-for-you snacks, and nutritious boosters.