Lost Lake | Avondale | Bar, Craft Cocktails, Tiki Bar, Must-Visit Bar | Bar

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Chicago has become something of a modern tiki mecca, thanks to Paul McGee, the cocktail visionary who previously helmed River North's Three Dots and a Dash, where I learned that midwest winters are best handled with strong (never cloying) rum drinks and vintage tropical decor that whisks you away to the South Pacific. My new Bali Ha’i, however, is Lost Lake, a Land and Sea Dept. tiki joint in Avondale directed by McGee and his wife, Shelby Allison. With Martinique-patterned wallpaper, pufferfish lamps, and a knowledgeable staff, it's a dreamy escape from urban drabness. Beyond the rum and fresh fruit juices common in his drinks, McGee incorporates unexpected ingredients like scotch, gin, sherry, and agave spirits. Not just a great tiki spot, Lost Lake is a new caliber of neighborhood bar. —Laura Pearson


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