Neighborhood Bar Guide | Chicago Reader
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Our Guide to

Where to Drink

in …

  • A portal to childhood; a hallowed ground for musicians, artists, and writers; and the only tolerable place to have a beer on the stretch of Division between Damen and Western
  • Sourcing a bar that's practically preserved in amber—and maybe, just maybe, the neighborhood's best manhattan
  • Karaoke, birthday specials, and the old-school original Small Bar
  • From hipster dive bars to a citywide destination for craft cocktails
  • Craft beers and cutting-edge jazz, a bar for hillbillies and locals alike, and a civilized 4 AM bar (5 AM on Saturdays)
  • Coziness, grit, authenticity, and a warning that “shit beer will kill you.” Wait, is this Lincoln Park?
  • The south of the border of the south side
  • Drinking in the clouds, expensive Japanese whiskey, and the saddest of piano bars.
  • A tourist mecca under Michigan Avenue, a classic dive manned by a no-nonsense dame, and a boozy tribute to the Great Lakes region
  • The land of 4 AM bars—sports bar, lounge, or decades-old jazz clubs: take your pick
  • The south side’s hipper side
  • An alpine lodge-inspired brauhaus and an art installation with booze
  • Belgian beers galore, craft microbrews, and gløgg
  • Summer-camp-styled karaoke, an Elvis bust, and barrel-aged whiskey on the bar
  • Croatian grog, the alleged birthplace of Second City, and the U. of C.’s semiprivate in-house pub
  • Happy respites from the neighborhood’s crowds, from sub-par cocktails, and from dance clubs that do it wrong
  • Search for a bar.

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