Dark, cramped watering holes, be damned: the new BreakRoom Brewery brewpub (2925 W. Montrose Ave., Albany Park, 773-564-9534) goes big and bright in fine style, making it a laidback and lovely addition to the city's craft beer scene.

The centerpiece is that sprawling, beautiful bar, which comes with a bit of a backstory. It's made by neighboring Heineman Bar Company, the source of some of the city's most impressive hardwood drinking spaces (think Revolution's brewpub in Logan Square–and, for that matter, its fist-shaped tap handles) and whose workroom is visible through a window from the bar. And the beers they're sliding across it are plenty impressive, too–for now, just six house brews, but eventually all twelve taps will be BreakRoom offerings from the red-lit facility also stationed behind some glass.

Here's what else we saw when we stopped in this weekend.