NoMI Lounge | Cocktail bar report card
The view is better than the drinks at this iconic bar.
History Shortly after opening in 2001, NoMI scored national ink as a standout chef-driven restaurant. These days there’s more buzz around its views of the Mag Mile.
Decor Perfect lighting casts a low-wattage amber glow that makes everyone and everything look beautiful.
Crowd Deep-pocketed businessmen sip 25-year Scotch, while the occasional date or splurging tourist oohs and ahhs over the Water Tower window view.
Minutes to get a seat on a weekend night Zero
Minutes to order/receive first drink 2/3
Creativity An A for effort, with drinks boasting intriguing ingredients such as Corsair red absinthe and cinnamon bitters
Quality Cocktails prepared by two bartenders are ridiculously boozy, while a third somehow manages to turn a concoction of Aperol, vodka, egg white, chamomile and lime into a dead ringer for Hawaiian Punch.
Value At $14 a pop, spend your money elsewhere…
Food …like on NoMI’s oysters and sushi.
Final evaluation Good looks and a great view have helped keep this lounge busy as it stretches into its second decade, but with average drinks (and a few puzzling potions seemingly aimed at the Cosmo set), it’s tough to deem it a cocktail destination for locals.
Still iconic? NO