When my husband and I are lucky enough to get a night out on our own, we usually defer to going out to dinner and going home to watch a movie (it’s just too expensive to risk one of us falling asleep at the theater!). But last weekend, we ate out at Madame ZuZu’s in Highland Park and then stayed for the HilariTea Comedy Show–and it was perfect!
Let me quickly tell you about Madame ZuZu’s before I tell you about HilariTea. Madame ZuZu has all sorts of loose leaf teas along with a vegan and gluten free menu. I had the avocado and tomato sandwich and loved it! I also had a vegan raspberry bar for dessert, and the hubby had a vegan, gluten free brownie. Both were delicious!
We arrived around 6:30 p.m. and we almost had the whole place to ourselves. We chose our table and were able to relax as we ate. I would definitely recommend going early and then staying for the show because it got really busy quickly as showtime neared. By the time the show started, some people were standing at the tea bar or all around the shop. Believe me, get there early!
We chose a table in the middle, faceing the front of the store so we could see the comics. All around, the walls were decorated with unique artwork and there was vinyl to flip through and other things to buy, too. Our table was big, and had eight seats around it so a few random people joined our table and we talked to them a bit. The vibe was cozy and friendly.
Each table had a vintage game in the middle to keep us busy until the show started. We had fun looking through the View-Master that was at our table, and clicking through pictures from around the world. If I had to sum up the ambience of this place in one word, it would be charming. I’m really glad we got there early to eat and hang out and talk before the show began.
And then it was show time! HilariTea Comedy Show is a monthly show that features a host and seven comics. They each do eight-minute sets, so we got to see a range of comics. I loved that the sets were short because it moved fast and we were able to hear lots of funny jokes. Our host was Krista Atkinson, and the other comics we saw were: Cody Melcher, Marla Depew, Dan Peff, Helen Schweitz, Matt Chiaramonte, Denise Medina, and Elizabeth Gomez.
I loved switching it up a bit and experiencing some live entertainment in a cozy venue. We weren’t too far from home, and it was free (we just paid for my sandwich, tea, and treats). The comics were fun, and many of them perform at other venues in the Chicagoland area, so it’s a perfect opportunity to find some comedians you might want to see again. I loved that they were all local comics at this show who used some Chicago culture in their bits.
With such a range of comedians, there was something for everyone–from a stay-at-home-mom to an Anchorman fan. Knowing there is going to be a different lineup every time, I would definitely go again and again. They also seem to keep the material in the PG-13 range, which I thought was nice and good to know. But even so, the comedy acts were still engaging and witty and entertaining.
It was great being there with my husband but going with other couples or meeting a group of girlfriends would be perfect, too. The location is great–you can meet friends coming up from the city or the suburbs, and it’s not too far for either. We left with good food in our bellies and smiles on our faces! Overall, it was a great night out and I’m excited to go again!
Disclosure: The writer was invited to attend the show for the purpose of this review but not compensation was received and all thoughts are their own.