By Stephanie Lu Jokich

Ok, we are not a city on the sea, lauded for our fresh seafood and salty air, but there are several spots in Chicago that live up to the essence of what it’s like to be in Spain. This country works a mysterious magic on you and if you haven’t been there yet, I suggest you avoid your daily trip to Starbucks, buy a nice travel-mug, and start squirreling away that hard earned cash. Add some photos to that travel mug. Maybe photos of Spain? Once those Benjamins are in the piggy bank, there is a world of paella and glittering beaches that await you. Until then, take someone to Spain tonight. You’ve got 24 hours. Make it count.

Barcito (credit:

Sunday-Monday: 4pm-12am
Tuesday-Thursday: 4pm-1am
Friday-Saturday: 4pm-2am

Situated on the coast of Erie & LaSalle, is a little homage to the best cuisine in the world. Chef Ryan Poli has spread his wings. Barcito featuring pintxos, joined next to big brother Tavernita, offers a culinary gamut of what it’s like to be in San Sebastian. Don’t let the scene distract you from what’s on the plate. Focus. Escalivada almond romesco, and goat cheese. Yes. Serrano Ham Bocadillo manchego cheese, pan con tomate. Check. Spiced Almonds. Ole!


Flamenco. A passionate and seductive art form – a culture smoldering in Andalucía for nearly five hundred years. Imagine color, romance, and passion. Don’t just fantasize about mastering the art of Flamenco. Classes at all levels run regularly.

Chicago Flamenco Festival 2012 (credit:

Chicago Flamenco Festival 2012

Performance: “A palo seco / Rebeca Tomás: rasgos flamencos”
Dates: 3/7/2012 – 3/8/2012

Rebeca Tomás is one of New York City’s up and coming Flamenco artists. She’s performed with Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca and Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana and she is now directing and choreographing her own original works. Her productions of A Palo Seco and Rasgos Flamencos have been doused with praise. Flamenco Week at Instituto Cervantes doesn’t disappoint.

Tickets at $20 general admission. $15 students/members of Instituto Cervantes, Arte y Vida Chicago, and the Flamenco Arts Center; Seniors. Limited seating. This performance is part of the International Women’s Day Celebration.


City Scooters
Hours: Tue-Sat, 10 am – 6 pm
Pricing: $115 per day, $400 per week, $55 for 3 Hours, $100 for 3-8 Hours

When in Rome, I mean Spain; I mean Europe in general… a scooter is a necessity. If you haven’t been on a moped, you haven’t lived. Zipping around on one of these little suckers isn’t as expensive or frightening as it may seem. City Scooters is by far the most service-oriented shop in the city, offering the best quality for your buck. They offer low cost insurance and will be having a sale on select scooters for all of March. Ask for Karl. He will show you the way. Grandma, I hope you’re not reading this. I’ll wear a helmet I swear.

Stephanie Lu Jokich is a lover of all things travel, food, and drink. She encourages you to invite her to dinner with her project Good Food.