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Everything is better with a bottle of wine, or so the owners of the BYOB art-party studio Bottle & Bottega thought when they opened their original Lakeview location two years ago. Turns out they were right: The concept has already franchised to the ?burbs and beyond, with more locations to come.

The concept was born one night over paintbrushes and Pinot, when founder Stephanie King-Myers convinced a self-declared non-artistic friend to start painting. Now the business offers a daily lineup of ?art experiences? to adult participants and also takes bookings for corporate events and private parties. Imbibing is encouraged, and classes range from mosaics and glass painting to canvas, live models and more. (Most are three hours and cost $35 to $40 per person.)

Opened just yesterday, the latest outpost gives Bottle & Bottega a new downtown audience. Situated on an up-and-coming South Loop block that?s near enough to the hotel district to also attract the visitor crowd, the location allows plentiful opportunities for partnerships with nearby restaurants. (A nearby grocery in the Sky55 building extends a discount on beer and wine to Bottle & Bottega guests.)

We?re already planning a date night featuring the face-to-face portrait class on August 31, confident we?ll portray our partner on canvas more accurately with a glass in our hands.

Bottle & Bottega, 1241 S. Michigan Ave.; 773-269-6570 or

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