3 Best Schaumburg Spots for Craft Beer

There’s nothing better after a long day than an ice cold, craft beer. If you’re in Schaumburg, Illinois, you’re in luck—there are several places to choose from when deciding where to drink up. Check out these three best spots in Schaumburg for craft beer.


RAM Restaurant and Brewery

The team member-owned RAM Restaurant and Brewery has more than 30 locations, one of which is in Schaumburg. The brewery features their own handcrafted beer at this family-oriented restaurant and provides patrons with gracious hospitality and service. A number of seasonal beers are on tap including Barefoot Wit, which is a light and hazy Belgian-style brew spiced with orange peel and coriander, and Double Dipa, which is a New England-inspired Double IPA and includes Mosaic, Amarillo, El Dorado, and Mosaic Lupulin Powder. Be sure to check out the rotating selection of flagship craft brews that are served with nitrogen.

Aside from great craft beer, RAM serves up delicious dishes such as pretzel sticks and beer cheese fondue, truffle parmesan RAM chips, and bacon-wrapped prime meatloaf. Stop by for happy hour Monday through Friday from 3 to 6 p.m. for specials on flagship beers, wine, well drinks, and food. RAM is open Sunday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.


Granite City Food & Brewery

Using Fermentus Interruptus, a patented process, Granite City Food & Brewery brews some of the best hand-crafted beer around. They have signature brews on tap, such as The Duke (Pale Ale), Batch 1000 (Double IPA), and Broad Ave. (Oatmeal Stout). Seasonal brews are also available throughout the year at this casual American restaurant. All beer is made in small batches, and their brewers craft more than 500,000 gallons of beer every year across their locations.

In addition to their tasty libations, Granite City Food & Brewery also prepares made-from-scratch dishes that are sure to please your palate, including artisan flatbreads, bison burgers, seafood, steaks, and more. After enjoying a delicious dinner and brew, be sure to save room for their seasonal sorbet or vanilla bean crème brûlée. The restaurant and brewery is open daily for lunch and dinner, and also serves brunch on Sundays.

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4 Tips to Maintain Your BMW’s Showroom Shine


There’s nothing quite like the look of the showroom shine on your BMW when you drive it off the lot. After taking it for a few spins though, that shine can fade. Dirt, bird droppings, snow, salt, and other debris build up quickly and wear down the paint. Luckily, there are some simple steps you can take to maintain your BMW’s sparkle.


Wash It Regularly

The first step to keeping a showroom shine on your BMW is to wash it regularly. Start by hosing down your entire vehicle with water. Next, fill a bucket with clean water and car wash soap, and use a soft cloth or sponge to scrub your car in sections. Rinse the soap off before moving on to the next section, and use a stiff brush to scrub your tires and wheel wells.

Once the car is clean, dry it with a microfiber cloth or chamois to stop water spots from appearing. When drying the rims, be sure you don’t touch the tire or else the microfiber will spread dirt.


Clean the Tires

Clean tires go a long way in giving your BMW have that showroom shine. After washing, get the wet, shiny look by applying tire spray or foam. Allow the spray or foam to sit for a few minutes, and then apply a second layer if necessary. Rubbing it in isn’t always necessary, so check the packaging for further instruction. Some sprays or foams are also best applied prior to washing your car, with a second application afterwards, so always read the directions first.

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The Top 5 Food Tours to Experience a Taste of Chicago


If you would like to know more about the culinary heritage and emerging trends of Chicago’s restaurants, booking a food tour is a good way to do so. Several themed tours are available for locals and tourists, introducing you to the secrets of creating delicious recipes. Find out more about the best ways to get a taste of Chicago below.


Chicago Favorites Food Tour

If you want to know what makes the locals excited about food in Chicago, this tour is a good choice. Starting at just $49 per person, you can visit the best pizza restaurants, taste the original local hot dogs, and pick up traditional brownies. You will also see how local beer is brewed, and learn about the history of the great city.

Starting at Bobby’s Bike Hike, this tour is offered either as a part of a biking package or as a walking event. The tour takes approximately three hours to complete and is suitable for all abilities. Apart from food, you will also visit some of the landmark buildings of Chicago such as Palmer House and the Millennium Park.


Chicago Beer Experience Tours

A great tour if you would like to find out more about Chicago’s history and colorful nightlife. You have three different routes to choose from: one covering Lincoln Park and Lakeview, another taking you through Wicker Park and Bucktown, and a third through the Loop and South Loop in the downtown area. You can experience the different beer styles of Chicago, as well as the tradition of the “beer and bacon” establishments in the 19th century, and visit the latest microbreweries in the area.

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Which BMW 2 Series Model & Trim Is Your Perfect Fit?

Customers are falling in love with the new features of the BMW 2 series. Find out below more about the best trims and specifications of the M230i and M240i that will make driving a BMW an unforgettable experience every time.


Sporty and Elegant at the Same Time

Both the 230i and M240i Coupe and Sedan are built for performance, with a great compact size, advanced body styling, and enough horsepower to enjoy every maneuver you make. The top horsepower of the M240i Coupe is 355, and it accelerates 0 to 60 in just 4.4 seconds, or 4.2 seconds if you choose the Xdrive upgrade: one of the best performances in the category. If you would like a car that looks great and responds to your driving style real time, the BMW 2 series is the right choice. If you choose the sedan, you will get great performance and horsepower, too.


Adjust the Drive to Your Needs

You can build your model to suit your needs and driving style. The best performance is delivered through the Xdrive models, giving you better steering precision, shorter reaction times, and faster acceleration. You can choose from several upgrades on the BMW 2 Series Sedan, such as the sun roof to feel connected to the world while hitting the highway. Both 230i and the M240i are offered in a coupe and convertible body style.

The Xdrive sedan and convertible can further be enhanced through different packages: the MSport package, including a sport steering wheel and leather seats, the 2-speaker Harman Kardon surround sound system for great entertainment on board, and an advanced driver assistance package that utilizes ultrasonic sensors. If you love pushing the performance of your car, the BMW apps will track and compare your lap time with other users. You can also pick your gear box and transmission system.


Quality and Guarantee

Both convertible and sedan models come with a 4 year or 50,000 miles guarantee on the powertrain and main body, while you get a 12-year corrosion guarantee, one of the longest offered on vehicles today. This means that your coupé or convertible sporty car will look as good as new for longer. You will get ABS And Driveline Traction Control as standard for both models, BMW assist SOS call for those unexpected events, and side impact beams.


Navigation and Technology the BMW Way

You will love the 8.8-inch display on the 230i and M240i, which automatically updates the maps, so there are no surprises when you are driving on unknown roads. Take advantage of the optional wireless phone charger or turn your BMW into a WiFi hotspot to impress your friends. Even the basic 230i model comes with the ConnectedDrive navigation system and the iDrive 5.0 system. You will be connected, entertained, and thrilled when driving any of the Series 2 BMWs.

With the M240i getting a 98 out of 100 customer rating and on the best buy list of Car and Driver, you cannot go wrong choosing one of the BMW 2 series as your next car.


Image via Flickr by THE SMADE JOURNAL

What Are BMW’s iPerformance Models?


Hybrids and electric vehicles are finally starting to nudge their way toward center stage. For much of the time they’ve been on the road, these cars have been surrounded by all manner of negative stereotypes. “They don’t have enough power.” “They don’t respond quickly enough.” “I need a car with some rumble in the engine.”

Despite the stereotypes, these vehicles have been improving and many drivers are jumping on the efficiency bandwagon. BMW is redefining the plug-in hybrid and utterly destroying these stereotypes with their iPerformance lineup. Here’s what you need to know about this selection of cars that manage to be both powerful and eco-friendly.


What Makes the iPerformance Models Special?


No, BMW didn’t suddenly team up with Apple and start making iCars. What makes the iPerformance vehicles special is how BMW took what worked with the BMW i8 hybrid drivetrain and applied it to an entire line of high-quality vehicles. Every iPerformance model uses BMW eDrive electric drive technology. An electric motor, lithium-ion battery, and intelligent energy management all team up to take these models from short to medium to long distances while completely running on electricity. When necessary, the two-liter, TwinPower Turbo gasoline engine kicks in.

Thanks to this combination of electric and gasoline-powered technology, drivers can get the power and performance they expect from BMW while still saving money at the pump.


iPerformance Drive Modes

For an even more enhanced driving experience, the iPerformance models can run on different driving modes for different driving styles. Kicking on the AUTO eDRIVE model will determine the most efficient combination of the iPerformance model’s electric motor and combustion engine by analyzing driving speed and battery charge. For more power, switch to eDRIVE mode, which allows for higher acceleration powered only by electricity. Need to save your battery charge for later? Switch to SAVE BATTERY mode and your combustion engine will charge the battery as you drive.


The iPerformance Models

Longtime BMW fans will be happy to see that the iPerformance models aren’t the stubby cars you may expect to be hybrids, they’re the same models you already love with a plug-in hybrid upgrade. If you’re looking for a sporty ride, you can’t beat the BMW 330e sport sedan. With excellent power, handling, and agility, you’ll quickly forget you’re driving a hybrid. Maybe you need something innovative. The BMW 530e blends great performance with innovative technology so you can stay connected to your vehicle.

The BMW 740e x Drive has it all. It’s a class-leading luxury sedan with all the tech, comfort, and convenience you could ever need. BMW doesn’t like to call the BMW X5 xDrive 40e an SUV. No, it’s a Sport Activity Vehicle with all the power, space, and off-road capability you need to adventure in luxury. All these vehicles include the hybrid tech that makes the iPerformance lineup so great.

Once you go iPerformance, you’ll never go back. Don’t believe us? Come down to Patrick BMW and check out the iPerformance models for yourself!

5 Popular Places To Go for Happy Hour In Chicago

If you are looking for a fun friendly place to get a great deal on food and drinks, you will find plenty of happy hour offers in Chicago. From special menus to BOGOF offers, you can choose from the offers of some of the best Chicago restaurants. Below you will find some featured offers that have been picked by local food experts.



Happy Hour Mondays at Flagship

Every Monday after 6 p.m., the popular Flagship bar hosts happy hour. You will not only get great drinks at a low price, but also something to bite on the side. Order light salads and wraps to go with your $5 glasses of wine. The Lake View Flagship also has weekend brunches, and you can watch Chicago Bulls games on the big screen while you are enjoying your happy hour meal and drinks.


Miller Lite Beer Garden

This lakeside bar is right on the Navy Pier, and you will not only get great offers on drinks and food between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m., but also enjoy live music on summer evenings. One of the favorite locations of locals during the summer, this venue hosts the Live by the Lake events, featuring local Jazz and Old School performers. All events are free at the Miller Lite Beer Garden, and there is no better place to go to enjoy a great atmosphere, great live music, and cocktails.


The Lodge Tavern

Mondays through Fridays between 4 and 7 p.m. you can enjoy different drink specials and get a $3 draft beer. This restaurant opened in 1957, and is a great hub of night life in Old Town Chicago. The traditional decor and great offers all week attract the crowds the Lodge Tavern, You will find the beer and cocktail of the month on offer every day, and try new flavors, such as the Avion Blanco tequila and party with friends until 4 a.m. every day.


Highline Bar and Lounge

Attracting young professionals, this bar is perfect for spending a few hours with friends. You will find daily specials, such as half price draft beer and cocktails. You can get a draft beer and Jameson shot for only $7 after 7 p.m. The bar has a huge selection of drinks: plenty of craft and import beer, as well as cocktails. You can take advantage of the Moscow Mule Tableside Service while visiting the bar.


Tallboy Taco Specials at Happy Hour

If you would like to have a special light meal before you share a few drinks with friends, the Tallboy Taco has eight special flavors for you to try. This River North Mexican diner is popular among young locals, who love turning up for a late brunch on the weekends and enjoy the selection of draft beer and tequila specialties. You can pick up a different happy hour offer every day.

Enjoying a great atmosphere, music, and special meals in Chicago is a great way to relax. Many quality restaurants and bars run special offers every day, so you will always find great deals, no matter what your favorite flavor is.

6 Can’t-Miss Upcoming Summer Events in Chicago, IL

There are many events happening in Chicago every month of the year, but the late summer month of August is even more packed. If you’re not sure where to start, here are six events taking place in August 2017. Each is worth planning ahead for, so make time for whichever ones catch your interest.


From August 3-6, one of the biggest musical events in the United States is coming to Chicago’s Grant Park. Featuring smash-hit stars like Chance the Rapper, the Killers, Blink 182, Run the Jewels, and dozens more, this is one event a music lover can’t afford to miss. If you want more music, consider the Millennium Park Summer Music Series as well, taking place on Monday and Thursday evenings from August 3-17.

Wrigleyville Summerfest

The 14th annual Wrigleyville Summerfest is free to attend, but donations go to supporting the Wrigleyville community, home of the Chicago Cubs. On August 6 and 7, visitors can enjoy live music, games, and beer on tap, all within some of the most historic and beautiful neighborhoods in Chicago. A percentage of all donations goes toward organizations like Lakeview Pantry and the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless.

Chicago Hot Dog Fest

This is the biggest event in the world honoring the hot dog, and 2017 is its fifth year running. Visit at the crossing of Lincoln Park and W. LaSalle Drive near the Chicago History Museum from August 11-13. Over 30,000 people are expected to attend this party, with over 35,000 hot dogs served over the three days in every way imaginable. There will be historians, gourmands, and even best-selling authors who all share a strong love for the classic American hot dog.

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3 Reasons You Should Test Drive the 2018 BMW M5

More and more spy shots and little snippets have come out to show that the 2018 model of the BMW M5 is on the way. What’s more, this model brings a major splash to make up for its absence in 2017. Here are three key reasons you should keep track of the upcoming M5 and test drive it once it’s on our lot.

Rear-Wheel Drive Potential

Senior BMW officials recently confirmed that the 2018 M5 is all-wheel-drive, as all past M5 models have been, and that it uses a fully adaptable system. Specifically, this means that the M5 is able to deliver 100 percent of the transmission power into the rear wheels, allowing the M5 to switch from a pure speed-focused rear-wheel-drive setting into the subtle mix of frontal grip needed for turns, curves, or just everyday city driving.

This all-wheel-drive system wouldn’t mean much if it wasn’t paired with an engine with enough power. Fortunately, the 2018 BMW M5 will have a twin-turbo V8 engine standard, which generates 600 horsepower at the least. If past models with this engine are anything to go by, the M5 will put out some killer stats, such as a 0-62 mph time under four seconds.

Eye-Catching New Design

Spy shots are notoriously hard to judge because each model is kept in a figure-hiding camouflage, but details do occasionally bubble up from the right shot. The new M5 is definitely getting a facelift, and it seems to be the start of a new generation and not just a redesign.

In the rear, the taillights are brighter, perhaps from new OLED bulbs seen in the current BMW M4. The two symmetrical grille slots are slightly farther apart, and the headlights are a bit softer and more organic, helping the model look broader from the front. The same characteristically downturned front fascia is still visible.

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A Brunch State of Mind: Where to Get The Best Brunch in Chicago

What’s for brunch? That’s perhaps one of the most important questions to ask during the weekend. And in the Windy City, there are plenty of brunch options. Lately, we’ve been hitting the town in search of the latest and greatest best brunch places. Below we’re highlighting some of our best findings, and commenting on the vibe, eats, and the beverages. So get ready to order another round of mimosas as you dine in style at some of the best Chicago restaurants.

#1: Batter & Berries

This Lincoln Park café allows patrons to indulge in their sweet tooth. Featuring a variety of decadent dishes including caramel French toast topped with candied walnuts, caramel sauce, and maple butter – there isn’t anything on this menu that won’t surprise you. In fact, it might even be a bit hard to choose an item to try, which is why they offer a French toast flight in which you can sample them all. On top of that, this restaurant is BYOB for mimosas. So grab a couple bottles of bubbly and get ready to have a sweet-filled Sunday.

#2: Lula Café

If you’re in the mood to try some unique brunch dishes, then Lula Café is the place to go. One of their most popular dishes is cornbread French toast which includes a side of in-season berries, coconut-scented streusel, and sweet corn anglaise. Or you can try another unique dish of fried eggplant chunks, sweet corn kernels, basil, tangy peaches, hard-boiled egg, ricotta salata, and pine nut vinaigrette. As far as drinks go, Lula Café offers their own twist to the classic Bloody Mary. With a huge dining room complete with a bar and outdoor patio, the atmosphere here is a fun, funky vibe.

#3: Tallboy Taco

Looking to get a little festive with some Mexican brunch food this summer? Try Tallboy Taco. It’s here where you can hang out on the patio while devouring steak and egg tacos, huevos rancheros, and old-fashioned churro donuts – all of which are beyond delicious in our opinion. Plus, Tallboy Taco also offers margaritas and build-your-own mimosas, which taste even better in the morning. Located in River North, this taco place is definitely one that you should add to your brunch list.

#4: Gather

This Lincoln Square restaurant offers a laid-back atmosphere. Lounging on the backyard terrace will lead to a menu filled with classic American-brunch dishes including shrimp and grits, flapjacks, chicken and waffles, and much more. Even if you find that the breeze is a little bit cooler than expected, we encourage you to warm up with one of their delicious cocktails.

Choosing any of the above Chicago brunch places will more than satisfy your eggs Benedict or French toast craving. Featuring both classic to new and inventive dishes, each Chicago restaurant has its own unique brunch style. So get ready to paint the town and enjoy all of the above brunch places. Do you have a go-to brunch place that we missed? Tell us in the comments below.


5 Cool Accessories That Will Make Your BMW Unique

Have you just purchased a BMW and want to make a few little adjustments, or add something not mentioned in the optional packages? BMW has an expansive accessories store that lets you customize and alter your model in almost every way, from performance to exterior and comfort. Here are a few examples of the ways you can accessorize a modern BMW vehicle.

LED Door Light Projector

This snazzy light attaches to the bottom inside of your vehicle’s doors. As long as they’re open, it shines a light that looks like various designs of your choice, including the BMW logo. The bright circle of light comes in several sizes and easily illuminates the ground if you drop your keys or other items, and it can warn you if you parked next to a puddle.

GoPro Camera Holder

BMW’s M-Series consists of small cars, sedans, and SUVs that are all right at home on the track. That’s why the automaker offers a special camera holder that mounts in either the front or back of any current M-Series vehicle and trim level. The GoPro mounts securely to record your driving from the best angle possible and offers full 360-degree rotation controlled by the driver. Be sure to only use this mount on the track, as it extends out and is not safe or legal in everyday public driving.

Outdoor Car Cover

While this practical addition doesn’t add any style to your BMW, it does help preserve it. Many BMW models come with a three-ply fabric cover fitted just for that vehicle. These washable covers easily catch under the vehicle and have special pockets for mirrors and other extremities. They let air flow through while blocking out rain, dirt, dust, tree sap, pollen, and all sorts of things that are best kept off your paint job.

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