The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Here Are Some Last-Minute New Year's Eve Celebration Options In Chicago

By Lisa White in Arts & Entertainment on Dec 30, 2013 5:15PM

Photo via Facebook.

New Year’s Eve tends to get lost in the holiday shuffle for us, emerging out of a fog of leftovers and scraps of gift wrap floating under a drooping Christmas tree. If you are like us, you probably have no plans yet for the final countdown. Personally we have no desire to cram into a mediocre bar for well drinks and cheap midnight champagne toasts so we opt for either two types of events; sit down dinners or concerts.

We’ve picked three favorites for each that are not sold out as of post time. Make up your mind and snag them now if you want to welcome the new year with a nice night out.

Food & Drink

NYE in Pilsen at Dusek’s

Dusek’s even admits they waited until the last minute to plan their own party so we already share a procrastinator kinship. Chef Jared Wentworth collaborated with New Belgium Brewery to create a five-course dinner with pairings. Expect some seafood (seared scallops with butternut squash rissoto, chestnut and Asian pear relish for one course), pork of course (braised pork cheek, sunchoke velouté, chaterelle, brussels and truffle vinaigrette) and some game as well (pulled rabbit ragout, potato gnocchi, roast roots, fonduta, mustard enriched sugo). The menu for the evening really showcases some of Wentworth’s favorite proteins to work with, an area in which he always shines. Head over to their website to check out the rest of the courses. Ticket prices are $75 per person and include dinner, a champagne toast and an “all night” dance party in Punch House. For everything included it is one of the best deals we’ve seen for New Year’s Eve. Dinner is seated at both 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. and you can call 312-526-3851 for reservations.

New Year’s Eve at Three Dots and a Dash

The VIP group packages are already sold out but some general admission tickets are still up for grabs if you want a tiki-themed way to ring in 2014. They’ll be hosting a tropical luau (leis provided) to ring in the new year. Each general admission ticket included passed island fare (their Thai Fried Chicken is a favorite) and a custom Three Dots tiki mug to take home as a souvenir of your night. Cocktails are not included in the price. Admission is $45 (plus $11.45 service charge) which isn’t bad for a tiki mug, bites all night and the guarantee that you won’t have any watered down well cocktails. Doors open at 9 p.m. and you can grab a ticket here.

Yusho Bonenkai 2014!

Bonenkai are a traditional year end Japanese drinking party to end the year through group celebration. Yusho is hosting their own version on New Year’s Eve with a 6 and 9 p.m. seating for $99 per person (additional $50 for beverage pairing). Fest on bites such as king prawn tempura with a surimi beignet, karage sauce and yuzu serrano aioli; twice fried chicken with garlic beer sauce and kohlrabi pickles; braised brisket ssam with oyster shrimp paste, sesame leaves, grilled garlic, coconut slaw and kabocha; coffee soft serve with vanilla pop rocks, nori wafers and fernet caramel. If you are still hungry they’ll have Izakaya add-ons (lobster teppanyaki with uni butter and pickled serrano chili, hamhock with chestnut and fried oyster) and Robata add-ons as well (skewered pork jowl with unagi sauce and bean sprout, quacky mountain oysters aka delicious duck testicles sous vide with panko and sweet chilli aioli). Call 773-904-8558 to make reservations.

New Year’s Eve Concerts

New Year’s Eve at Emporium with Archie Powell & The Exports

Local favorites Archie Powell & The Exports will be hosting a low key evening of beers and arcade games to ring in the new year. We are totally fine with the idea of counting down to midnight while playing pinball or Tapper. For $10 bucks (a steal!) you get three bands (Archie Powell & The Exports, The Noise FM, and Hemmingbirds), access to all your favorite arcade and pinball games, good beer and a Jeppson’s Malort toast at midnight (we wouldn’t have it any other way). Doors open at 5 and bands start at 9 p.m. if you want to have a long night of celebrating. Grab your tickets here.

Death at Reggie’s

Rock in the new year with the Detroit godfathers of punk and the subject from one of our favorite documentary films this past year. The general admission tickets are already sold out, but Reggie’s is offering multiple options for the evening, including a VIP package with early entry, food buffet and drinks, a poster and the chance to hang out with the band before the show. The options left range from $50-$80, still a great deal for New Year’s Eve. Plus we’ve been pretty smitten with the history of the band since watching the documentary so the chance to meet them sounds mighty fine to us. Head over here to grab tickets.

Dessa at Lincoln Hall

We loved Dessa’s early afternoon set at Riot Fest earlier this year but she really shines in a dark club atmosphere. In a more intimate setting she stretches out her legs, offering up twists on her original arrangements and bringing up friends to guest on reworked versions of her tracks. She is a skilled frontwoman who is always engaging and charming with her fans and audience. Add in a powerful wordsmith to boot and you have the makings of a memorable New Year’s Eve evening. Opening the evening is Astronautalis, rounding out a night of Minneapolis hip-hop sound. Both artists create introspective fine tuned lyrics paired up perfectly with an array musical arrangements so expect the evening to run the gamut in style. Grab tickets here.