Cooper's Hawk Restaurant and Winery is a great place to go if you're looking for superb wine and amazing food in the Midwest. With restaurants and wineries in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin, Cooper's Hawk has become a staple for wine lovers in these three states. With their Napa style tasting rooms and luxurious restaurant and bar areas, it's no wonder Cooper's Hawk is the premier destination for anyone looking to enjoy some great wine and food in the area.
Cooper's Hawk currently has seven locations, with a few that just opened up this summer. The wineries and restaurants are located in Burr Ridge, IL; Orland Park, IL; Naperville, IL; South Barrington, IL; Wheeling, IL; Indianapolis, IN; and Brookfield, WI. There is also a location in Arlington Heights, IL that will open up this fall. All of these locations offer a beautiful tasting room and adjoining restaurant and bar where you can also enjoy the food.
The seven wineries produce over 125,000 gallons of wine every year. The grapes used to make the wines come from Washington, California, and Oregon among other states and the wine is made right in-house at the various Cooper's Hawk locations. Cooper's Hawk does not own the vineyards from which they get their grapes; rather, they buy them from areas that produce some of the best grapes in the country, allowing them to make some of the best wine in the Midwest.
Rob Warren, the winemaker, was born in Canada and has studied earth sciences, oenology, and viticulture. He has worked as Assistant Vineyard Manager at Malivoire Wine Company in Canada as well as Winemaker and Vineyard Manager at Kacaba Vineyards. In 2004, he started working as Winemaker at Tarara Winery in Virginia. Now, he is Winemaker at Cooper's Hawk, producing many award-winning wines.
In the restaurant, you will be able to enjoy the same wines you had in the tasting room along with some of the best food you will ever eat. A popular pastime is to have a wine flight with several appetizers. The wine fights are amazing, and you can even create your own if you wanted to try several of the wines. The appetizers are so tasty you may not even have room for dinner and dessert (although you should make room, because the dinner is just as delectable). The lobster corn dogs and chicken pot stickers are among my favorites.
For dinner, you can find anything your heart (and stomach) desires, from burgers to salads to seafood and pasta. Each food item is expertly paired with a wine, but you don't have to follow those suggestions. The best thing to do is get a wine you like and food that looks good to you. Remember that pairings are just suggestions. When you're finished with dinner, be sure you order a dessert, but getting one to share is probably enough, because the desserts are satisfying and huge.
When you first enter a Cooper's Hawk location, you walk right into the Napa style tasting room. Usually, you are greeted with a free sample of wine to enjoy while you look around. If you choose to do a tasting, the expert employees fill your tasting glasses with the wines from the tasting list, which changes every month. They always start you with a sparkling wine to cleanse the palate, then move from sweet whites to dry reds and finish with a fruit or dessert wine. Having dinner or appetizers after a tasting is a great idea, and can create a wonderful evening out for you and that special someone.