Dining a the bar
The weekend story in the Wall Street Journal about restaurants expanding their bars/lounges and associated food offerings rang a bell for me. This is exactly how I eat in San Francisco. I've seen a lot of great restaurants described here, but cannot get a sense for the bar.
Any recommendations for downtown Chicago area (within easy reach of the Intercontinental Hotel)? The ideal place would have a full bar and a conversational bartender who might teach us something about wine/liquor. The cocktails would be made with freshly squeezed juices and herbs. Two of us would be able to sit down at the bar at 9 p.m. on a Saturday night and order an appetizer and an entree. The food would be some kind of Contemporary American. On Sunday, I'd be looking for the same thing but I'd be more concerned that the place would be empty, rather than too crowded.
Sorry in advance, there are probably postings on this topic, but I couldn't find them.