Fall has been awards season at the Weekly for almost a decade. In this issue you can find our 2014 picks for the best secret access to funk and blues, the best cup of cobbler, the best teenage doom punks, the best nonprofit philosophy, the best singular cultural experience you can get drunk at, and seventy other best things (we think). We’ve aimed to create something relevant to the longtime resident and the fresh transplant, to a grandmother who’s seen it all and a fresh-faced college student. Don’t consider this issue exhaustive. Rather, take it as an invitation to some urban exploration. So here it is: our love letter, tip sheet, crash course, to-do list, ode, celebration. Enjoy.

Know a South Side best not featured in this issue? Send pitches and tips to

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Bridgeport → Best Hyperglycemic Rush, Best Monkey Wrench, Best Shot at Rivaling Chinatown, Best Kept SecretBest Way to Bring Home the Bacon, Best Way to Bike Over the Dan Ryan and Emerge with All Your Limbs Intact
Bronzeville → Best Place to Get Your Bike Fixed, Get a Tour, and Make New Friends, Best Place to Go Green While Playing Chess, Best Place to Be Hungry Now, Best Place to Be Hungry Later
Hyde Park Best Lineup, Best Liquified Nutrients, Best Landlord, Best Zaleski & Horvath MarketCafe
University Village & Little Italy Best Future Museum, Best Working Breakfast, Best Board and Books
Chinatown Best Tiny Museum, Best Healing, Best Singular Cultural Experience You Can Also Get Drunk At, Best Subterranean Cheap Eats, Best Buddhas, Best Uniforms, Best Bakery
South Shore → Best (Only) Potato Chip Cookie, Best Unexpected Chinese Restaurant, Best Op-Ed Columnists, Best Bird for Your Buck, Best Place to Frame Your Masterpieces
Far Southeast Side Best Bike Through the Woods, Best Union of Old and New, Best Ghost Plant, Best Place to Get Your Goat
Auburn Gresham & Greater Grand Crossing Best Cup of Cobbler, Best Haunt, Best Afterschool Drill Ground, Best Dancing Altar Servers
Little Village Best Place to Buy Literally Anything, Best Aroma, Best Late Night Drive-Through, Best Bilingual Refuge, Best Eye Candy, Best Discount Destination
Chatham Best Secret Access to Funk and Blues, Best Keepers of Pavement Peace, Best Place to Get the Craziest Cakes, Best Meal for Stomach and Soul
Pilsen Best Vintage Selection, Best Bottomless Margarita, Best Locavore Meal, Best Arts Reach, Best Nonprofit Philosophy
Back of the Yards Best Plant, Best Frutos del Mar, Best Penny Pastry, Best Gateway Vegetarianism, Best Non-Required Reading
Woodlawn & Washington Park Best Diaspora Lit, Best Biscuit, Best Coffee Shop Associated with Theaster Gates, Best Coffee Shop Not Associated with Theaster Gates
Englewood Best Place to Fix Anything, Best Good Word
South Loop Best Place to Play Chopsticks, Best Roofdeck, Rockin’ Bus, Rock Club, Music Joint, Bar, and Grill, Best Signature Drink, Best Book Fest, Best Way Out
Beverly Best Place to Spend the Morning, Best Place to Pretend It’s the Early 1960s, Best Figure Drawing, Best Trilby, Best Surrealist Duo, Best Teenage Doom Punks

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