Drinking at the grocery store in Chicago is part of our culture, and Mariano’s has a great deal to do with this routine in my life. Mariano’s, which first opened its doors in 2010, has grown immensely in the last 9 years. It essentially put Chicago’s main grocery store (Dominik’s) out of business just 3 years after opening. They did this by creating a community feel in their stores. Mariano’s is not just a place to grab groceries — it is place to listen to music, grab a quality lunch and meet new and old friends. In almost every Mariano’s there is a wine bar and several stores have live music weekly.
The Mariano’s in Lincoln Park is just 2 blocks away from my office so I am there several times a week. I enjoy being able to grab a freshly cooked meal for lunch or meet friends quickly after work and sit at the bar. The bar has fair prices, but my favorite way to spend time at the bar is to buy a bottle of wine from the wine section of the grocery store, show they bartender my receipt and enjoy my selection while it is held cooling behind the bar.
I had to laugh that as I was preparing for the polar vortex in January 2019 and stopped by Mariano’s Lincoln Park to grab bread, the wine bar was standing room only and the temperature was already at -25.
Check out live music Fridays from 4-8 pm.