DOWNTOWN & HALSTED is an art bar in Forbestown which recreates the revolutionary art and food scene of the famed Halsted street in Chicago known for its public art, galleries, restaurants, and bars that make up this favorite neighborhood hangout.
From Buffalo tenders to crispy pata, its menu offers international comfort food conceptualized by Chef Marco Legasto of Prime 101 and Abuelas. It incorporates made-from-scratch ingredients from freshly made pasta, bread, jams and dishes with no MSG or pre-mixes. While Singaporean based bartender Jason Gray fixed up designer cocktails using fresh pressed juice and premium spirits as their base.
Did I mention they sell the cheapest alcohol by the bottle in the area?
Here’s what to expect in Downtown & Halsted…
Downtown & Halsted is located in Forbestown beside Locavore and Watsons.
Besides its urban, arty interiors and graffiti filled walls, the bar also functions as a gallery …
… showcasing artworks, paintings, photographs and sketches from up and coming artists that are for sale.
Mushroom Soup (P250)
If you’re heading over for lunchtime, start your meal with their fresh mushroom soup. I like the blend of earthy flavors.
Buffalo Tender (P290)
A classic favorite is the tangy Buffalo tenders served with a blue cheese dip. Crispy, crunchy and juicy the chicken tenders are slathered in a rich Buffalo sauce.
Baby Calamari with Salted Egg Aioli (P190)
I liked the baby squid coated in salted egg batter; it goes very well with their salted egg garlic aioli.
Truffle Fries (P260)
The truffle fries were also good but a bit pricey.
Japanese Gyoza (P180)
Filled with pork and cabbage the dumpling was very juicy, moist with a crisp-chewy wrapper.
Crispy Pork Knuckles (P580)
Order the pork knuckles a perfect pulutan with its extra crunchy skin and tender meat. Best paired with gin and tonic because of the citrusy notes.
Short Ribs (P750)
Very tender fall-off-the-bone meat. The short ribs were a little too sweet to be eaten as is; it’s best paired with rice or mash potatoes to balance it out.
The spice and caramel flavors would go nicely with a bottle of whiskey.
Halsted Sour (P450). monkey shoulder, bitters, egg white, kafir
Their fruity concoctions are my favorite.
Order their signature and best-seller the Halsted Sour. Also known as a whiskey sour it has the classic balance of sweet and tart flavors enhanced with fresh-fruit.
Brunswick Collins (P350). reyka vodka, dry wine, coriander, strawberries
Pretty in pink this summer drink brings together fresh muddled strawberries and coriander with Reyka vodka and dry wine. A light, sweet, and fruity cocktail.
Coffee Lemonade (P145)
Coffee lovers would love this non-alcoholic beverage. It’s a bit sweet, but I love the coffee and tangy aroma of the fresh lemon together making it a delicate and luscious drink.
They also carry different rare types of single malts, wine, gins, and tequilas that have the best price in the Forbestown Area if you buy by the bottle.
Overall, If your looking for a late night hang out with a laid back neighborhood vibe, good food, handcrafted cocktails, check out Downtown & Halsted in BGC.
The Downtown & Halsted concept was put together by the bar owner and restaurateur Perry Quimbo of Bugsy’s, Red Rabbit and Dillinger’s.
Live an Awesome Life,
ABI of Team Our Awesome Planet
Disclosure: Our dinner was courtesy of Downton & Halsted. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights.
P.S. Happy Hour is from 11 am to 8 pm. They offer buy 1 take 1 on selected wine, cocktails, beers, and P100 Johnny Walker shots.