With its burgeoning restaurant scene and its vibrant startup culture, Chicago is one of the best places in the country to start a business.
We spoke to friends and colleagues and polled readers to bring you the coolest and most innovative new businesses in the Windy City.
The winners, listed in alphabetical order, have all opened since (or just before) Fall 2011 and include a donut shop run by an alum of one of Chicago's best restaurants, a personal shopping service, an Argentinian empanada shop and a startup that's changing how the service industry hires.
What it is: European-inspired diner food.
Why it’s cool: Au Cheval's not your typical diner, with dishes like a fried homemade bologna sandwich, duck heart hash and a pork porterhouse. They also have an excellent burger.
This diner has more than 30 international beers on tap.
What it is: The one-year-old company buys and sells recycled interiors, furnishings, and art. Their specialty, however, is pillows—hand-painted and custom-made.
Why it’s cool: The founders of bethie b. are Meg Goldberg and Beth Barron, a mother and daughter “pillow-creating design team” with an eye for the unique, creative and custom made.
What it is: A personal shopping service founded in November 2011 that strives to give women more free time.
Why it’s cool: The CakeStylists work with clients’ different budgets, work dress codes, and preferred designers. You can also buy CakeStyle as a gift for friends and family.
See the rest of the story at Business Insider