A few days back my husband & I visited The Violet Hour with a couple of friends. It was recommended by a friend of ours who knew about our love for good cocktails. The place is situated in the nice and artsy neighborhood of Wicker Park. Whenever I think of our visit to this place one word that comes to my mind is ‘MYSTERIOUS’, pleasantly mysterious, with capital letters! If you want a unique experience and are not in the mood for just another night on the town, this is the place you must go to! The surprises start at the door, which itself is hard to find. You will find many wall graffiti in Wicker Park. One of these walls at 1520 N Damen Ave (next to the blue line train station) has a door which is effectively invisible to the eye at first; this is the entrance door of the Violet Hour. Once we stepped in, my first impression of the place was that it was some sort of secret society meeting venue. The speakeasy feel of place was enhanced by dark, elegant interiors with long satin curtains, tall chairs and soft opera music playing at high volume. The tables are arranged so as to maintain privacy for each seated group. Our waitress seemed suited to the place with her black attire and gothic tattoos and make-up. The cocktail menu offered many options categorized by the liquor type. The potency of drinks increases as you go from the top to the bottom of the menu, as is the case with many cocktail bars. Among the four of us we ordered Empire Strikes First (Gin based), Valor Reborn (Whiskey based), The Boss (Whiskey based) and Pink Petticoat (Vodka based). The drinks were outstanding and quite potent. We also ordered one light appetizer to much on. The opera music wore on after a while and we were so engulfed in our chats that we didn’t realize when they changed the music to jazz blues. Overall, it was a pleasant experience and did not cost too much. 4 great cocktails and appetizer costed us $66 excluding the gratuity. Definitely recommend this place to a couple or a group of couples looking for a unique experience.
Here is a glimpse of the ‘house rules’ for The Violet Hour (The ambience was much darker than what appears in the pic):