Often described as ‘the best bar to go to when you turn 21,’ this space lives up to the tagline in many ways. Capitalizing on the interests of Millennials, Emporium offers a slew of distractions ranging from pinball to pool. For those less inclined to hang around the bar, Emporium also has numerous arcade tables. Being another edition to the Chicago ‘Barcade’ trend, this location can easily house over 50 people, more than its Wicker Park location. Whether you prefer sinking your change in tokens or Vandermill Ciders (particularly Blue Gold), Emporium will certainly rank highest in terms of novelty and entertainment. Try your hand at beating the high score on the Space Jam pinball.
Emporium Logan Square, 2363 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 360 8774
Located on the corner of Armitage and Kedzie, this bar was established in 2012 and named one of the best bars in the city by Chicago Magazine in its first year of operation. In terms of design, Scofflaw displays a rich contrast between its front and back rooms. Upon entering, you’ll be met by the usual havoc of other bar-goers attempting to order drinks. A few paces further in resides a much different scene. Described by the director of operations as the distinction between a bar and your grandmother’s house, the backroom is adorned by beautiful timely pieces of furniture, over which a glinting crystal chandelier casts a dim light. Other interests include the wonderful array of original craft cocktails, of which four distinct menus are distributed each year.
Scofflaw, 3201 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 252 9700
Longman and Eagle
Steps off the Logan Square Blue Line stop resides the only Michelin star-rated restaurant in the area. Among the entire city, only 15 have attained such a rating. Its name is a reference to neighborhood itself, as Evelyn Longman oversaw the construction of the Eagle monument that respectfully nests above Logan Square only a few paces away. Perhaps one of the first upscale restaurants in the area, Longman and Eagle was a pioneer in the movement of a now visceral bar and nightlife scene. Its back room offers an escape from the juke-boxed panic of the bar, over which hangs a pixelation of original woodwork. Among its offerings are an extensive whiskey selection as well as seasonal cocktails.
Longman & Eagle, 2657 N Kedzie Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 276 7110
The Boiler Room
Across the street from the California Blue Line stop sits the #1 Jameson distributor in not only Chicago but also the world. Also worth noting, the place is ranked #6 in the country for PBR distribution. The space looks like a haphazard arrangement of wood, metal and glass at first glance. However, this wide variety of material is explained by the repurposed design, featuring light fixtures created out of vintage cameras and retired bowling alley tabletops. Each piece of furniture has a story. A projector splashes various films on the wall behind the bar each night. The Boiler Room is renowned for its PB&J deal, featuring a 16-ounce PBR, Jameson shot, and slice of house-made pizza. Unfortunately, the bar only takes cash, but if you turn in your ATM receipt, you’ll receive a free Jameson shot.
The Boiler Room, 2210 N California Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 276 5625
The Slippery Slope
You’ll be greeted by skee ball machines at the door of The Slippery Slope. Its red glow feels like the confines of a dark room. Thousands of photo booth strips hang above the bar, adding to the darkroom motif, as well as giving it a neighborhood-friendly feel. Featuring live DJs, this is one of the more dance-oriented establishments and is a necessary stop on the long line of Milwaukee bars. Mondays feature cheap beers and free skee ball. As the cold rolls in, this is also the place to be for its movie nights.
The Slippery Slope, 2357 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 799 8504
The Heavy Feather
Like the cool top floor roommate you had in college, The Heavy Feather is located above The Slippery Slope. Met with the gaze of a stuffed cinnamon bear when you walk up, this place is a stark contrast to the floor below. Offering a much more nostalgic feel of the 70s, The Heavy Feather is a considerably quieter bar. Each aspect adds to its atmosphere, from the rolling leather office chairs to the ornate wooden bar; this bar stands out as a period piece for those looking for style, elegance, and serenity. Sip on a 70s-styled cocktail as the fireplace crackles into the night.