Thursday, December 13, 2007

Connoisseur grand opening, holiday bashes and so much more . . .

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The scene at Connoisseur during one of its tasting parties

I have no idea why it’s so busy this weekend, but it’s enough to keep everyone happy:

Connoisseur Wine Co. The grand-opening weekend is finally here for this tiny, yet stylish River West wine lounge with a mobile martini bar (bartender shakes up signature chocolate and green tea cocktails tableside), shareable Creole-inspired plates and some of the best underground deejays in town. Confirmed spin stars include ?, Lee Farmer, DJ I.N.C., Joe Glover, Madrid and World. Guests who RSVP receive gift bags, complimentary champagne, wine and tastings from the menu. Dec. 14-16. 1041 W. Grand Ave., 312-738-3055.

Joe’s. The 5th annual Kandy Kane Ball happens on Dec. 15 as this sports bar is transformed into a winter wonderland for a holiday atmosphere. Guests are requested to bring unwrapped toys (none with batteries) and kids’ hats, jackets and gloves, with all donations going to Chicago’s children’s charities. Party starts at 9pm, and for $20 you get an open bar and appetizers. 940 W. Weed St., 312-337-3486.

Krem. The fabulous Lincoln Park lounge celebrates its first-year anniversary with a party benefiting Toys For Tots. Guests are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy for admission. Also, to celebrate the anniversary—and new renovations to the VIP and main rooms—they’re pouring complimentary Champagne and passing appetizers 9-10:30pm. Dec. 14. Also, come back on Dec. 15 for the Holiday Sweater event during their hot Sunday-night industry party. 1750 N. Clark St., 312-932-1750.

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Plan B. Also, dig into those old boxes (you know you’ve got ‘em!) for the ugliest sweater for The Sweater that Stole Christmas Bar Crawl. Strut with no style when it kicks off at this new Wicker Park lounge (1635 N. Milwaukee Ave.) at 2pm, then hits Cans (1640 N. Damen Ave.), Northside Bar and Grill (1635 N. Damen Ave.) and Pint (1547 N. Milwaukee Ave.). Guests will then return to Plan B for a private You Made It reception until 8pm where local deejays will spin the usual beats. Drink specials include Leinenkugel drafts for $2 and Imperia vodka drinks for $4 at Plan B; $2 beer and vodka mixed drinks for $4 at Cans; Kalamazoo Bell’s amber ale beer for $4 and Southern Comfort and lime shots for $5 at Northside; and Point Pale Ale beer for $2.50 and Shiner beer pints for $4 at Pint. $20 donation; all proceeds benefit Inner Voice, Inc., a Wicker Park-based non-profit organization that assists Chicago’s homeless community. Dec. 15.

Rednofive. Two fashion events happen this weekend: Friday’s Holiday Fashion Fantasy includes shopping, a runway show, comp admission and appetizers by Chaise Lounge. 8pm-midnight. And Saturday—back by popular demand—they’re hosting the Glam Live and Mario Ink Body Painted Fire and Ice Fashion Show at midnight. It’s the perfect chance to order Redno’s Champagne Bouquet—designed by Rednofive and Moet—that’s a trio of champagne splits from Moët and Chandon, Impérial Rosé, Nectar Impérial and White Star. The bouquet comes with special champagne flutes shaped like the petals of a flower and have been a very popular item with female guests for $75. 440 N. Halsted St., 312-421-1239.

Salud. And Lip Service Productions hosts a jolly Downtown Divas X-Mas Soiree. The Thanksgiving party they had over at Jillys will be pale in comparison. From 8-9pm, you’ll get complimentary holiday cocktails. Party happens Dec. 13 (tonight!). Free. 1471 N. Milwaukee Ave., 773-235-5577.