The Haute Seeker

Black Owned Everything and Outdoor Chicago Activities with Britney Robbins

In this week’s Seek Like a Local, Britney Robbins breaks down her favorite Chicago dining destinations, artists, and black-founded and led community organizations (including her own) that you can support all year long.

Explore Chicago Like Britney Robbins

Britney is a serial social entrepreneur who loves innovation, forward-thinking and is constantly identifying problems that can be solved through business creation. When she’s not attending (and can’t wait to get back to them) live concerts and music festivals, she’s either leading her non-profit The Gray Matter Experience or working as Relationship Manager for CAST US, an initiative of Cleveland Avenue.

Britney Robbins Black Owned Businesses Chicago Featured in Seek Like A Local
Britney Robbins // Image provided by Britney Robbins

What Chicago community Organizations do you support?

First and foremost, I lead the incredible work happening at The Gray Matter Experience where we’re working to equip Black students with entrepreneurial education and resources. Other orgs I would highly recommend supporting: Good Kids Maad City, The Greenwood Project, Ladies of Virtue, Equity & Transformation (E.A.T), and Chicago Freedom School. 

What are your favorite things to do in Chicago?

One of the things that COVID really made me realize is how beautiful the outdoor spaces in Chicago are. Visiting the many parks and lakefront locations around the city has become one of my favorite things to do. Driving to the suburbs to sit around a lake, walk a trail, walking through Douglass Park, or picnicking at Promontory Point – all must do warm-weather activities!

31st Street Beach Black Owned Businesses Chicago in Seek Like a Local
31st Street Beach Harbor // Image by Taylor Justin

As a local, where do you like to shop in Chicago?

My personal favorite is the South Loop. I love the ease of getting around, the cheap/free parking, and the variety of stores offered. From H&M to Nordstrom Rack, TJ Maxx, Target. I typically end up spending way too much time and money anytime I go there.

WE know Chicago has an amazing dining scene, tell us some of your favorite spots in the city.

County Barbecue in Seek Like a Local
Bourbon, Pabst, and Brisket Sandwich from County Barbecue // Image via Facebook

This is such a hard question because there are so many places I love! In true Libra form, I’ll give you my favorites: Burgers – Au Cheval, Sushi – Sea Dog Sushi, Thai – Bodhi Thai, BBQ – County BBQ, Soul – Chicago Chicken & Waffles, Mediterranean – Kabobchi in Tri Taylor, Tacos – Del Toro and Taqueria El  Mezquite.

Who are your Favorite Artists Chicago based—or otherwise?

Music: Adam Ness, Erthe St. James, Saba, BJ the Chicago Kid 

Art: Brian Golden, Heir Porter, Julian Gilliam, Brandon Breaux, 

Photographers: Nolis, Dennis Elliott, Chuck Olu Alabi, Emily-Melissa’

Seek Like A Local, and discover things to do, places to dine, and more of what the city of Chicago has to offer this week. Check out previous guides from influential Chicago locals here.

Explore like a local—Subscribe to The Haute List Today!

In this week’s Seek Like a Local, Tanya Taylor shares travel tips for locals and tourists visiting Chicago, where you can find the best pizza in Chicago (down to the exact location), and where to shop if you are frugal and fashionable in Chicago.