Best bars in Irving Park
Looking for a place to get some work done during the day and grab a cocktail at night? Nighthawk Chicago serves coffee throughout the day, with booths where you can sit and check things off your to-do list. Plus, you won't have to find anywhere else to go when the sun goes down; Nighthawk offers a list of cocktails (we like the Nighthawk Manhattan with coffee-infused Carpano Antica and Cynar) to unwind with.
Head brewer Trevor Rose-Hamblin and chef Matthias Merges present a list of six beers, along with a few collaborations and an upscale but approachable menu that includes dishes like a massive burger on focaccia and crispy fries. Opening with six classically styled beers is ambitious, but we’re perfectly happy with the Scentinel IPA and the Precinct milk stout. The bar is large, with two rooms—one darker, with a wraparound bar and tables surrounding it and another garage-style room with rows of tables. TVs surround each space, making it a great place to watch games (though you won't mistake this brewery for a sports bar).
Known to its customers as the place to keep the party going, the Unforgettable Lounge is a bar that's open more often than not (4am every morning, unless it's Saturday, when you'll be able to hang out until 5am), with sports always on the TVs, a scratch-off Lotto ticket dispenser, a pool table, darts and happy hour specials. Grab a $1 domestic from noon–3pm, or try an all-day special (you'll almost always find a $3 beer here) and stay through the night for regular events, from bingo to Halloween costume contests.
With its gigantic metal chandeliers, leaded-glass cabinetry and old-time lever-operated cash register, this bar has a turn-of-the-century feel (the one before last) that may just make you feel like you've been transported. Prices aren't quite pre-Prohibition, but you will find generously poured mixed drinks during happy hour for $3 along with $2 domestics and friendly people.
The windowless front door isn’t exactly a welcome mat, but once inside Christina’s compact, cozy digs (and after an insanely cheap Guinness), you’ll feel right at home. The football pennants hanging over the bar and baseball on several TVs scream sports bar, but the Talking Heads and ’60s-era Stones on the jukebox combined with the bartender’s Iggy and the Stooges shirt say otherwise.
Karaoke and food? Yes please. Loyola's Asian Cuisine and Lounge serves large dishes of Filipino food with a side of karaoke and cheap drinks. Grab a table and a few dishes, pick a few songs and settle in for the night.
An LED screen announcing specials to a dark stretch of Irving Park Road ensures you can’t miss this sports bar, named for the liquor store that previously inhabited this corner. Leader has a handle on the qualities of a neighborhood bar and grill: plenty of beer options, chirpy service and a family-friendly menu for the weeknights, all bathing in the glow of laser-bright TVs.