Chalk Boutique (Closed)
2611 Prairie Ave., Evanston
One might expect to find a shop of this stature in the center of town, but this Evanston gem values discreet comfort above flash…though you’d never guess that judging by the edit alone: Balenciaga, The Row, and Carven are just a sampling of big-name labels dotting the pristine, all-white showroom. What’s more, owners Carrie Kane and Sharon Watrous, are big believers in nurturing emerging talent, so expect some under-the-radar finds, too.
Dollop Coffee Co.
749 Chicago Ave., Evanston
While Dollop has expanded across Chicago over the past 10 years, it’s still very much the neighborhood coffee house at heart—there’s nothing slick or overwhelmingly modern about any of the cafes. At the original Uptown spot, the seating options include lived-in couches and upholstered chairs, which if you’re in it for the long haul, makes a difference. The food offering, while modest, will do the trick in a pinch. The Streeterville location is spacious and well suited for study groups or casual meeting. Want fresh-baked pie to go with your coffee? Evanston serves Hoosier Mama pie all day. Perfectly brewed Metropolis coffee is consistent throughout so check out the Downtown and Gold Coast outposts, too.