Best Restaurant Bars in Chicago

These ten bars happen to be in restaurants, but they merit some hang time even if you don’t stay for the food

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100 BEST BARS
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Scenes from some of our top bars and clubs

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Bars we’re thirsting for at presstime, either yet to open or too new to review

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Best spots for $2 Guinness pints, judgment-free dancing, White Sox sightings, and more

33 CLUB
The cocktails, from spot-on classics to sophisticated new creations: terrific. The soaring two-story space, with floor-to-ceiling velvet drapes and acres of dark wood: stunning. And the bar menu: so inviting you may refuse to relinquish your high top. No wonder this jammed Old Town upstart buzzes from early evening onward. 1419 N. Wells St.; 312-664-1419, 33clubchicago.com

BIN 36
At the crowded big oval bar, servers deftly help you navigate a list of 50 wines by the glass—and seem to know what you want even if you don’t. Pair your choice with a selection of American farmstead cheeses, and you approach transcendence. 339 N. Dearborn St.; 312-755-9463, bin36.com

THE BRISTOL
The upstairs bar can fill with diners waiting for tables, but fresh interpretations of classic cocktails (like pisco sours) and inventive modern concoctions (like the Koi Pond, where flecks of orange peel “swim” in tequila, Veev acai, white grape juice, and fresh ginger) make this prime cocktailing country. 2152 N. Damen Ave.; 773-862-5555, thebristolchicago.com

THE GAGE
If you can get anywhere near the gorgeous 50-foot mahogany bar for an afterwork drink at this upscale pub, you can choose from a mind-boggling array of boutique beers, Scotches, and other whiskeys. Make it a double. 24 S. Michigan Ave.; 312-372-4243, thegagechicago.com

KEVIL’S
This homey supper club/tavern feels like it’s been there forever, what with the old Catholic school photos and warm staff. The old-fashioned, wood-toned bar area oozes Chicago character. 7228 Circle Ave., Forest Park; 708-488-8683

NACIONAL 27
If you’re sick to death of hearing about mixologists, blame Adam Seger, the brainy bartender who uses everything from pumpkin purée to fresh fennel for his drinks at this slick Latin scene. 325 W. Huron St.; 312-664-2727, n27chicago.com

NOMI RESTAURANT
There may be no better warm-weather spot to sip an expertly mixed cocktail—and ogle a swanky crowd—than the outdoor terrace floating seven stories above the city’s din. At the elegant bar inside, snag a seat with a postcard view of the Water Tower: picture perfect. 800 N. Michigan Ave.; 312-239-4030, nomirestaurant.com

THE PUBLICAN
The pork may get all the press, but the Belgian-heavy beer list is among the city’s best. Seats are in high demand in front of the 12 brass taps at the gorgeous nine-seat walnut bar, so grab a standing table under the globe lights. 837 W. Fulton Market; 312-733-9555, thepublicanrestaurant.com

SEPIA
Joshua Pearson’s prowess with a shaker drives this throwback, where the cocktail list is equal parts classics (French 75) and modern stunners (the Caracas Manhattan, a potent mix of rum, Italian vermouth, orange bitters, and Angostura bitters). 123 N. Jefferson St.; 312-441-1920, sepiachicago.com

SUNDA
The impeccably tanned crowd that populates Sunda’s sexy bar may be onto something: The sweet Asian-inflected drinks in their hands are actually pretty good. 110 W. Illinois St.; 312-644-0500, sundachicago.com

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4 years ago
Posted by danlee55

The Drawing Room at Le Passage

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