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Most interesting bars in Chicago?

Most interesting bars in Chicago?
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  • Most interesting bars in Chicago?

    Post #1 - June 21st, 2004, 3:17 pm
    Post #1 - June 21st, 2004, 3:17 pm Post #1 - June 21st, 2004, 3:17 pm
    I have a friend visiting from Delaware for several days around the 4th of July. We have some good stuff planned already--Milwaukee and Summerfest for Speed Queen, Frozen Custard, the Old 97's, Shelby Lynne and Marcia Ball; Fitzgerald's for the Drive-By Truckers, Dave Alvin and Terence Simien, and possibly La Quebrada; and perhaps Archer Prewitt at the Bottom Lounge or Bobby Bare, Jr. at the Empty Bottle--but I need suggestions for some of the more interesting bars in Chicago. In the past when he's visited, we've hit and greatly enjoyed places like the Green Mill, the Map Room, Huttenbar, Resi's Bierstube and the Hopleaf. What bars have I missed that offer distinctive, interesting experiences--that is, great cocktails, an impressive tap selection, an intriguing "feel", crowd, scene, or physical space, or some combination thereof? My friend likes both noirish and Algrenian bars, but also appreciates chic places that serve very well done cocktails (and they have to be well done because he is a master cocktail maker). Cany any of you help me out? Thanks.
  • Post #2 - June 21st, 2004, 3:49 pm
    Post #2 - June 21st, 2004, 3:49 pm Post #2 - June 21st, 2004, 3:49 pm
    Try Cary's Lounge. A great little time warpy,neighborhood oasis admid the subcontinental wonders on Devon Av.Decent beer selection,good juke,pool table and congenial locals.

    John
    Cary's Lounge
    2251 W Devon

    http://www.caryslounge.com/index-home.html
  • Post #3 - June 21st, 2004, 10:08 pm
    Post #3 - June 21st, 2004, 10:08 pm Post #3 - June 21st, 2004, 10:08 pm
    Kenny,

    Are you going to see the Old 97s at Grant Park, or at the Abbey on the 6th? The Abbey show was on- again/off- again, now it's on, and tickets went on sale last Saturday. I had the fortune of going to college outside Dallas while the band was cutting its teeth, but have missed them for a variety of reasons (births of children, etc.) every time they've been through here. I just re-read your post, and realized you're seeing them at Summerfest. I don't know if you've seen one of their shows before, but they're fantastic live, and I highly recommend seeing them in a more intimate indoor venue like the Abbey. I'm pretty excited. Unfortunately, Jonathan Richman cancelled this weekend at the Double Door. But enough of miscellaneous musicspeak.

    Lem's and the bar next door

    I highly recommend a trip down south for some ribs at Lem's and some Old Style next door at Miss Francie's bar (and Bid Whist parlor). I've been threatening a lengthy post on a recent excursion to the two, but as it becomes less and less recent, and my memory is already fragmenting, I might as well give up. But let me say, for anyone contemplating Lem's and fearing the south side, that, just as a single data point, the bar next door is the single friendliest bar I have been to in Chicago.

    Wednesday night, I believe, is the day to go, according to patrons when we were there. The crowd was quite lively and the DJ was pumping some serious 70s soul and funk. There's no great beer list, but the Old Style is a hell of a way to wash down Lem's ribs. I bought an apple martini for some girl whose birthday it was, and it was terrible. I don't like those things to begin with, but this thing was worse. On the plus side, the bartender brought the shaker to the table emptied most of it into an oversized martini glass, and then poured the remainder into a juice glass so she could top it off. It was bad, but at least there was a lot of it.

    To flesh out the night a bit more, me and a buddy, a U of C grad student and Hyde Park resident, met at the cultural center for some Persian classical music. A fantastic show. It left us hungry. Now my buddy is as pale of flesh as I, and while he's not exactly frightened of the big bad south side, he's relatively content to inhabit the insular world of Hyde Park and travel to the north side for social outings. He's also not nearly as obsessed with food as I am. To wit, he'd never had Lem's. So we hopped the red line, walked the eight blocks to Lem's well after dark, picked up some ribs and tips and, not content simply to eat in the parking lot, and having no hood of our own, we sought out a watering hole to wash town the pig with some suds.

    Now I'm not exactly sure of the name of Miss Francie's. It could have just been Miss Frances'. Or it could have just said Francis on the sign and the Miss was appended by the various patrons with whom we spoke. But it's on 75th, just a few doors west of Lem's on the same side of the street.

    When we entered, I believe one or two jaws dropped. It was clear that few white boys hang out at Miss Francie's. Before our first beers were opened, we were warmly welcomed by a man who happened to be an off-duty, undercover, project-working, Bid Whist-gambling cop. He was astonished we'd heard of Lem's. "Heard of it?" I asked, puzzled. "I thought everyone knew Lem's is the place in Chicago for ribs."

    Spending too much time on Chowhound, and now here, certainly skews one's perspective of what's well-known and oft-frequented. He was not the only one that night incredulous we knew of Lem's. The man bought us some drinks, chatted for a while, told us how much better the neighborhood is now then it used to be, and checked with us regularly to make sure we were enjoying ourselves. He also made us promise to return with more "white boys from the north side", and strongly encouraged us to learn how to play Bid Whist, pointing at a smiling picture of Michael Jordan playing Bid Whist at Miss Francie's. I still don't know what Bid Whist is, though I believe it's in the genre of Hearts, Spades, and other "trick" games.

    I could go on, or I at least I could have sooner after the fact. We were similarly approached by no less than four other bar patrons, each one just as friendly, and wanting to talk about how surprised and pleased they were that we were white and traveling to their part of town. In fact, I was shocked by how openly everyone seemed to discuss "the race issue". It's the kind of thing that you generally tread lightly around in social situations, and elicits nasty flame wars on Chowhound.

    But what was most surprising, is how much more foreign it felt than simply being a white Chicagoan travelling to Black Chicago. It was much more like an American traveling in Europe (back when they still liked Americans)--that sort of "Hey...what are you doing here...oh, that's great!...cheers all around to the foreign folks" kind of atmosphere. Again, it was easily the friendliest reception I've had at any bar in this city.

    By the end of the night, many more Old Styles later than originally planned, the DJ was giving shout outs to the two white boys in the corner, and we were got a round of applause from the whole bar. (We were not alone in this--lots of people were getting rounds of applause from the whole bar.) It was surreal. And absolutely shocking, and a little sad, that the presence of white guys was as foreign to that bar as it would have been had we stumbled into a brauhaus in Düsseldorf. But man it was a blast, and I can't wait to go back.

    Lem's eaten on the hood of one's car seems to be the Chowhound/LTH-way. But I highly recommend checking out Miss Francie's next door. And if you're concerned about the neighborhood or the time of day or the darkness, well, you'll hear a lot of different things. Some people will surely say it's dangerous, and I would not dismiss their experiences out of hand. I've not felt it. I'm also not a Chicago native, and I didn't grow up informed by the collective memory of the dangers of the south side. This is merely another story to consider. When we finally left Miss Francie's, it was well past midnight, and we walked the eight or so blocks back to the red line, with nary a cold glance felt upon our shoulder.

    Edit: Add title/subject.
    Last edited by Aaron Deacon on June 22nd, 2004, 8:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #4 - June 21st, 2004, 10:24 pm
    Post #4 - June 21st, 2004, 10:24 pm Post #4 - June 21st, 2004, 10:24 pm
    Really great post, Aaron. On the issue of being a stranger in a strange land, I remember when I was dragged to El Gato Negro many years by a friend-- a night on which ethnic transsexuals also figured prominently before the evening was through, apropos of another post-- it wasn't long before I heard the band refer to us as "nos amigos Americanos"-- our American friends. Here we were, still in my same ZIP CODE for crying out loud, but we were the strange Americans and they were the natives. (Of course, they immediately launched into the one song they knew we'd know-- La Bamba.)

    I often think of our breakfast at Podhalanka on the Mil-walk-ee-thon, and what the old Polish waitress and the hungover workmen must have thought about being invaded first thing in the morning by 25 cheery strangers, some with kids in tow. Already that story is becoming legend there; we could probably go back in 10 years and hear an embellished-beyond-recognition version of it.
  • Post #5 - June 22nd, 2004, 2:04 am
    Post #5 - June 22nd, 2004, 2:04 am Post #5 - June 22nd, 2004, 2:04 am
    Aaron --

    Very interesting report on Miss Francie's (France's?). I guess I've seen its hanging Old Style sign many times but never really considered stopping in. I'll be sure to give it a try one of these days.

    Also not far from Lem's is the New Apartment Lounge (504 E 75th), where Von Freeman plays on Tuesdays. They also have Bid Whist nights (maybe Wednesday). Bid whist, related to bridge, is amazingly popular in the African-American community. Reportedly it was popularized by the Pullman Porters in the 1920s and a lot of the lingo and obligatory trash talking derive from them.

    If Kenny's guests have any interest in jazz, a visit to hear Von Freeman, one of the great old saxophonists of the Chicago scene, would be well worthwhile. New Apartment Lounge, at least on Tuesday nights, is certainly one of the notable Chicago bar experiences. Even on other nights it's friendly and fun but probably not a destination spot. Unfortunately there's nothing at all notable in the drinks department. Even more unfortunately Lem's (311 E 75th) is closed on Tuesday as is nearby Army & Lou's (422 E 75th). Maybe more than one trip is called for (remember Lem's is open to 4am weekends, a perfect nightcap!).

    For good bars with good drinks I'll go ahead and suggest the obvious: The Matchbox at 770 N Milwaukee. I'd characterize it as a sophisticated dive and their mixed drinks are up there with the best. Now that it's warming up one of my favorite cocktails is their pineapple gimlet (they prepare their own pineapple vodka and use fresh-squeezed lime juice) made with one-third to one-half the usual sugar and without sugar on the rim. Very tart and refreshing. I had my first of the year not long ago and it's really a phenomenal drink. I'm indebted to Erik M for this one.
  • Post #6 - June 22nd, 2004, 6:34 am
    Post #6 - June 22nd, 2004, 6:34 am Post #6 - June 22nd, 2004, 6:34 am
    For a small taste of sophistication, I would suggest stopping in at the Hotel Intercontinental on Michigan Avenue for a very well mixed martini and some piano jazz. Last time I was there, Judy Roberts was playing solo in the bar. What a treat!
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #7 - June 22nd, 2004, 7:58 am
    Post #7 - June 22nd, 2004, 7:58 am Post #7 - June 22nd, 2004, 7:58 am
    Rene G wrote:Very interesting report on Miss Francie's (France's?). I guess I've seen its hanging Old Style sign many times but never really considered stopping in. I'll be sure to give it a try one of these days.


    It's funny, as we sat there, I thought to myself, "Surely Rene G knows this place--it's strange I've never heard of it." Actually the New Apartment Lounge was the place I had in mind for a drink down there, but for the life of me, I couldn't remember it when I got down there. Thanks for the reminder. And thanks, also, for the Bid Whist correction--no wonder my Google searches for Biz-wit were coming up empty. :lol: I think I may go change that.
  • Post #8 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:06 am
    Post #8 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:06 am Post #8 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:06 am
    I second the Intercontinental - amazing martinis, tho not a place to be very late.

    Some other of my favorites:

    Quenchers
    2401 N. Western Ave

    around a hundred or more bottled beers and always a nice selection on tap... live music free everynight.


    Clark Street Ale House
    742 N. Clark St

    Another excellent beer bar - many belgians and local micros to choose from, lots on tap. A big plus is one of the better Scotch and Bourbon selections. Great old building that has housed one bar or another for a long, long time.


    Delilah's
    2771 N. Lincoln Ave.

    We had a LTH bourbon tasting here, and for good reason - easily the best bourbon selection in the city (perhaps the midwest). Small, dark but welcoming... sometimes soft-core 70's porn on the tube, sometimes old punk rock videos.

    Sonotheque
    1444 W. Chicago Ave

    Very slick joint, good cocktails, I recall the decor being referred to as "Airplane Hangar"... I love the area and its great for a change of pace.

    Rosa's Lounge
    3420 W. Armitage Ave

    Thought I'd throw this one in if you feel like hittin some blues in the city... Hard to beat the musicians that play on a nightly basis, with none of the cheese that accompanies at Kingston Mines or Legends.
  • Post #9 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:51 am
    Post #9 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:51 am Post #9 - June 22nd, 2004, 8:51 am
    I echo the mentions of Rosa's and Delilah's. There are also a few good spots around Irving Park & Ashland -- the Long Room on Irving Pk next to Popeye's is a favorite of mine, with congenial and generous mixologists, and the two more divey spots just south of there on Ashland (roughly across the street from each other) are also good spots to spend some time with friends.

    Glad to see some other folks whose musical taste I share, BTW. Although, I have to say, I saw the Old 97s long ago when I lived in Boston, and Rhett's precious hair-tossing was enough to put me off the band. (Note that this Saturday has a good lineup at the Taste: Rodney Crowell, whose Old Town gig last year was one of the best shows I've seen in a long time, at Petrillo early, then Terri Hendrix, Buddy Miller, and the Flatlanders at the small stage.)
  • Post #10 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:06 am
    Post #10 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:06 am Post #10 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:06 am
    I recently stumbled upon a pretty decent blues bar in Berwyn called the Harlem Lounge. It's a rarity in that it's an old school, non-touristy, small blues bar with decent music. Lots of drunk people dancing. Reminded me of something out of the Blues Brothers (I mean that in a good way). If you're in the area at Fitzgeralds, it might be worth checking out.

    Harlem Lounge
    3701 S Harlem
    Berwyn, IL

    My favorite place for cocktails is the Matchbox. Great Manhattans. Since it's summer, there is outdoor seating, so the crush inside the bar is less intense. I also enjoy their sister bar (and neighbor) the Silver Palm, which is a nice alternative if the Matchbox is too crowded. Matchbox is at Ogden/Chicago/Milwaukee.

    Another place unique place to check out late night is the Blue Light. It is one of the two bars under the Western Ave overpass of Belmont. Great location. This is a "townie bar" as my wife calls it. If you ever went to school at a land grant university far removed from civilization, you'll know what she means. They serve their booze out of plastic jugs, I'm pretty sure the back room has a dirt floor, and there are always a few ladies missing their front teeth. Great, trashy late night place.
  • Post #11 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:39 am
    Post #11 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:39 am Post #11 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:39 am
    Bid Whist

    Last year, either on the other board or on the listserv, there was a prolonged discussion on Whist. I found one article on Whist, which relates to the variant preferred by the black community:

    Bid Whist

    In the prolonged discussion, we learned WHIST is a very old game, originating I believe in England. A game the colonists would have recognized.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #12 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:49 am
    Post #12 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:49 am Post #12 - June 22nd, 2004, 9:49 am
    If you have never ben to the Empty Bottle for their Honky Tonk Happy Hour on Fridays (starts at 5:30 ends at 7:30 I believe), they have a pretty good band playing for tips and the typical low priced drinks and good environment. You can also eat cheap when the tamale guy drops in...

    I'd also recommend The Hideout. Not easy to get to without a car but a very cool, laid back room, and great music.
    http://www.hideoutchicago.com/

    Jamie
  • Post #13 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:18 am
    Post #13 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:18 am Post #13 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:18 am
    Another one that just came to mind is Fizz on Lincoln just north of Belmont. A nice neighborhood bar with good food, although slightly yuppish. Wednesday is Sneaky Tiki Night, with freshly made Pina Coladas served in hollowed out pineapples.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #14 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:32 am
    Post #14 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:32 am Post #14 - June 22nd, 2004, 10:32 am
    Kenny -
    If you have time to stop while you are in Milwaukee try the Palm Tavern on Kinnikinnic (or KK as the locals call it) in the Bay View area of Milwaukee. There'a an article on it at the www.onMilwaukee.com site. It was opened by a former bartender from the Hopleaf and it has a similarly awesome beer list. It doesn't look like much from the outside - in fact it's almost hard to find because the neon sign in the window is so small, but the inside is very inviting. I finally stopped in this weekend and found myself wishing there was a bar like this in Chicago.
  • Post #15 - June 22nd, 2004, 11:14 am
    Post #15 - June 22nd, 2004, 11:14 am Post #15 - June 22nd, 2004, 11:14 am
    I don't think anyone has mentoned the Duke of Perth up on Clark. I haven't been there in years but I used to enjoy going there... Good Scotch whiskey... British beers on tap... What is it like these days?

    A
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #16 - June 22nd, 2004, 4:11 pm
    Post #16 - June 22nd, 2004, 4:11 pm Post #16 - June 22nd, 2004, 4:11 pm
    I know your post was for bars in chgo and to that end I suggest Skylark -- see previous posting -- at Cermak and Halsted. I also like the Rainbow (same owners, I think) but for my taste better early than late, better weekend than weekday. Incidentally, if you are into indierock stargazing, members of 11th Dreamday, Tortoise, Wilco and other sort of famous folks have been seen drinking and even working there (one of my biggest rock thrills ever was being able to tip Rick Rizzo, the guitarist from 11th Dreamday, when I first moved to town -- Jesus, I'm a geek.)

    But the real point of this post is to implore you to rearrange your schedule to go to At Random in Milwaukee. Greatest bar in the known world. Ice Cream Drinks and lots of them in a creepy atmosphere. A little like the Milk Bar in A Clockwork Orange, a little like the rec room of a sad Dean Martin impersonator. But all with a family, neighborhood vibe. Its the kind of place that would be awash in self-conscious hipster irony if it were in Chicago, but there is none of that. Be forewarned: the drinks are large, you can't really taste the booze (but it's there), and they don't serve beer.
    I don't have the address but it is in Bayview. I think it is on Delaware but it is worth looking up.
  • Post #17 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:19 am
    Post #17 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:19 am Post #17 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:19 am
    the Long Room on Irving Pk next to Popeye's is a favorite of mine, with congenial and generous mixologists, and the two more divey spots just south of there on Ashland (roughly across the street from each other) are also good spots to spend some time with friends.


    One of these places might be the Ten Cat, truly one of the fine bars on the North Side of Chicago. Not very divey, though, more Bohemian (in the artsy sense, not the Chech sense). The dump accross the street is more a neighborhood Polish (in the Eastern European country sense, not the high-gloss sense) joint. A sign in the window notes a temporary closure due to illness.

    Further south on Ashland, at Grace, you will find a real (not faux) Irish pub, Ginger's, recently voted the #1 soccer bar in America on the USSoccer.com site.

    Avoid the new Ilsands, on the same stretch, a former Pepe's that has turned into a tropical-themed bar catering to very recent frat members with its skanky bathing-suit wearing cocktail waitresses.

    Delilah's is a great bar, as previously mentioned. Also, you might check out the Hillbilly bar (really, from the days when folks from KY and WV moved in droves to the North Side) Carol's Pub, at 4659 N. Clark.

    For an interesting ethnic experience, why not take one for the team, and visit one of the glitzier Polish (same as above) bars or clubs. How about the strange but good Player's Club on Ashland near Fullerton, or this place:

    http://www.chicagobarproject.com/Reviews/Jedynka/Jedynka.htm

    And while you're at it, explore the Parnell Bar Project, certainly one of the greatest gifts to humanity on the web.

    PS, don't overlook the Hourglass on Lawrence, as interesting and tasty a Korean bar as you will find. Not the sort of place you might stumble on (though I did). Look at the recent Asian fried chicken string for info.
  • Post #18 - June 23rd, 2004, 10:47 am
    Post #18 - June 23rd, 2004, 10:47 am Post #18 - June 23rd, 2004, 10:47 am
    Good, I'm glad someone tried Islands and I don't have to. It gave off many unpromising vibes but it's so close to me I likely would have had gone there eventually.
  • Post #19 - June 23rd, 2004, 2:17 pm
    Post #19 - June 23rd, 2004, 2:17 pm Post #19 - June 23rd, 2004, 2:17 pm
    JeffB wrote:
    the Long Room on Irving Pk next to Popeye's is a favorite of mine, with congenial and generous mixologists, and the two more divey spots just south of there on Ashland (roughly across the street from each other) are also good spots to spend some time with friends.

    One of these places might be the Ten Cat, truly one of the fine bars on the North Side of Chicago. Not very divey, though, more Bohemian (in the artsy sense, not the Chech sense). The dump accross the street is more a neighborhood Polish (in the Eastern European country sense, not the high-gloss sense) joint. A sign in the window notes a temporary closure due to illness.

    The Ten Cat it is! And I even remembered it correctly, but didn't say the name because I was convinced I was wrong. Thanks for the reminder, Jeff.

    And thanks for the update on the Polish joint (in the barroom sense, not in the illicit substance sense ;). It's been a few months since I've been able to get down that way.
  • Post #20 - June 23rd, 2004, 5:29 pm
    Post #20 - June 23rd, 2004, 5:29 pm Post #20 - June 23rd, 2004, 5:29 pm
    I find soccer interesting to watch, and I haven't been able to find a bar in Chicago that shows the Euro Cup matches for free. Everywhere--Ginger's, O'Hagan's, etc., charges 20 bucks a head due to some bizarre linkup (the bartender at O'Hagan's claims it's not the bar charging, but people the satellite company send in to insure the bar is charging a set price).
    Anyone know of a bar showing the matches for free? Or, at any rate, less than 20 bucks a head?
    (Hopefully this will lead to chat that will warrant me posting under this heading, but, if not, feel free to delete it.)
  • Post #21 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:17 pm
    Post #21 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:17 pm Post #21 - June 23rd, 2004, 9:17 pm
    Can't find any fault with the recommendations already listed, a number of old favorites there, namely Hideout and Rosa's (last time I went I was happy to see that Tony still greets customers at the door, and his Mama still reigns behind the bar). I have fond memories (decade or more ago) of going to Marie's I think it's called.... on Armitage just west of the expressway. Back then you would show up after the 2am licenses had closed since that kitsch heaven was open until 4am. Is it still happening?

    I last went to the Duke of Perth about a year or so ago, and it was still good. Great selection of single malts and decent pub food.

    Don't go to bars much anymore (my friends have aged it seems :wink: ), but if I am meeting someone for a drink I usually wind up at the Tasting Room next to Randolph Wine Cellar (1415 W Randolph). I try to go upstairs for the view, provided it isn't being used for a private party. Good wine list, friendly servers, casually elegant, and most important: you can hear your companion speak. Perhaps it's not just my friends that have aged, but me too.... sigh.... I've lost my tolerance for bars that are so noisy I have to engage in a shouting match in lieu of a civilized conversation.

    This has led my memory to a favorite bar that is no more: the Bucket of Suds on Cicero south of Belmont. Crazy dusty bottles of homemade liqueurs (that all tasted of vanilla) and a wonderfully cantankerous and loveable bartender/owner, Joe Danno I think his name was. In addition to the stickies, he made barbeque sauce as well as 'hot and sultry' mustard. Ah well... I'll raise a bourbon to his memory.
  • Post #22 - June 24th, 2004, 8:05 am
    Post #22 - June 24th, 2004, 8:05 am Post #22 - June 24th, 2004, 8:05 am
    Joe Danno,man talk about a blast from the past! I used to go there for burgers cooked "with love" by Joe's sister and to load up on Joe's homemade BOS bbq sauce.

    Joe was quite a character and always delighted in showing off his prize posession,a bottle of Chinese brandy that had a pickled lizard floating in it.

    Looks like Joe's family is carrying on his good works.

    http://www.suntimes.com/output/houlihan/cst-nws-houli163.html
  • Post #23 - June 24th, 2004, 8:21 am
    Post #23 - June 24th, 2004, 8:21 am Post #23 - June 24th, 2004, 8:21 am
    Thanks for the update. I loved that bar... *sniff*
  • Post #24 - June 24th, 2004, 9:40 am
    Post #24 - June 24th, 2004, 9:40 am Post #24 - June 24th, 2004, 9:40 am
    yea, i miss b-o-s as well. i still have a couple of joe's "newsletters" and a bos bumper sticker that read "if you don't buy american, it's bye bye america".

    what i miss most what his liquid panacea, elixir lucifer, which cured just about any ailment (or at least distracted me from my pains!)

    sharon
  • Post #25 - June 24th, 2004, 10:46 pm
    Post #25 - June 24th, 2004, 10:46 pm Post #25 - June 24th, 2004, 10:46 pm
    ParkerS wrote:I find soccer interesting to watch, and I haven't been able to find a bar in Chicago that shows the Euro Cup matches for free. Everywhere--Ginger's, O'Hagan's, etc., charges 20 bucks a head due to some bizarre linkup (the bartender at O'Hagan's claims it's not the bar charging, but people the satellite company send in to insure the bar is charging a set price).
    Anyone know of a bar showing the matches for free? Or, at any rate, less than 20 bucks a head?
    (Hopefully this will lead to chat that will warrant me posting under this heading, but, if not, feel free to delete it.)


    They're showing the games and not charging a cover at Cactus on Wells & Van Buren, and also at Jorgio Cafe at Clark & Wrightwood.

    Cactus Bar and Grill
    404 S. Wells St.
    312-922-3830

    Jorgio Cafe
    2616 N. Clark St.
    773.248.0250
    www.jorgio.com
    -Pete
  • Post #26 - June 25th, 2004, 1:31 pm
    Post #26 - June 25th, 2004, 1:31 pm Post #26 - June 25th, 2004, 1:31 pm
    LTHers,

    Thanks for your many thoughtful suggestions on and stories about definitive Chicago bar experiences. I am intrigued by several suggestions, and, remembering the invaluable Chowhound thread on dive bars from last year (see below), have a wealth of options to consider. Aaron's story about Lem's and Miss Francie's is a classic, and perhaps my friend and I will be able to duplicate the experience. Certainly we will have to make a trip to Lem's, which, I am embarrassed to admit, I have not yet tried. Other suggestions, like the Long Room, Ten Cat, Rosa's, Clark Street Ale House, Carol's, the Skylark and a few more are also interesting leads, and hopefully we will make it to several of these spots. I am almost certain we will hKFit both Delilah's and the Matchbox, as my friend is a great lover of bourbon and, as I said in my original post, well done cocktails. Meanwhile, JeffB's suggestion that I "take one for the team" and visit the renowned Polish nightclub, Jedynka, presents a fascinating, formidable challenge. I have long heard about this place and its reputation for attracting Eastern European "beautiful people", American fetishists seeking the company of Polish women, and edgy working class immigrant twenty-somethings looking for trouble. If we don't hit this place in the coming week, I will have to check it out later. I have also long wanted to visit the Hourglass. I live only a few minutes away, but have heretofore had my wings craving attended to by Great Seas. Mike G's fabulous pictures, descriptions and rankings in the transsexual thread have, however, further whetted my appetite, and so a trip to the Hourglass is also on the agenda. Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention the Milwaukee suggestions, which I also appreciate--they seem sound and I will make an effort to try them, as I plan to drink prior to the Old 97s show. The real gem of the Milwaukee posts is not a single drinking option, though, but a sentence from edk, who describes the Milwaukee bar AtRandom in the following way:

    A little like the Milk Bar in A Clockwork Orange, a little like the rec room of a sad Dean Martin impersonator.


    The phrase "a little like the rec room of a sad Dean Martin impersonator" had me laughing a long time as I tried to imagine what exactly the rec room of a sad Dean Martin impersonator might look like. Further, I wondered, aren't all Dean Martin impersonators destined to lead sad lives?At any rate, I am greatful for all of the knowledge, humor and excellent ideas expressed in this thread. Thanks again!--KFRP

    Chowhound dive bar thread:
    http://www.chowhound.com/midwest/boards ... 26550.html
  • Post #27 - September 18th, 2005, 1:02 pm
    Post #27 - September 18th, 2005, 1:02 pm Post #27 - September 18th, 2005, 1:02 pm
    Long time bump, but I'm suprised nobody mentioned the Matchbox in River West. Smallest bar in Chicago. It's shaped like a slice of pizza with the entrance as the biggest spot in the bar. The bathroom is at the tip of the slice.
  • Post #28 - September 18th, 2005, 2:30 pm
    Post #28 - September 18th, 2005, 2:30 pm Post #28 - September 18th, 2005, 2:30 pm
    Since you bumped it, I should note that the Cubby Bear in Wrigleyville has been booking some very nice live music acts of late. I have seen Sonny Landreth, the Radiators and today's version of my favorite jam band Little Feat there in the last 60 days.
  • Post #29 - September 18th, 2005, 2:34 pm
    Post #29 - September 18th, 2005, 2:34 pm Post #29 - September 18th, 2005, 2:34 pm
    Giallo mentions Matchbox near the top.
  • Post #30 - September 18th, 2005, 3:26 pm
    Post #30 - September 18th, 2005, 3:26 pm Post #30 - September 18th, 2005, 3:26 pm
    Christopher Gordon wrote:Giallo mentions Matchbox near the top.


    Yeah, let's just give this subject a rest, O.K.?
    I can rarely get a seat, anymore. ;)

    "Hendrick's Gin Gimlet. Up, please."

    E.M.

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