If you're lucky enough to work from home or need to tackle a few tasks away from the office, we have good news: There are plenty of spots that open well before 5pm where you can score free Wi-Fi and grab a drink. Work can (sort of) be fun when you have a beer, glass of wine or a cocktail in your hand, right?
RECOMMENDED: Best bars in Chicago
Places to get a beer while you're working
The taproom has free Wi-Fi, so settle in for the afternoon over a tasting flight. They also have regular tappings of limited releases, so try something new while you're at it. Looking for an old favorite? Of course we always love Daisy Cutter, but look for tap room and growler-only selections like Space IPA.
Sure, the draw of Estereo may be the cocktails, but don't overlook the beer list. With four tap handles, expect to see local beers from Whiner, Off Color and the like. Plus, Estereo's warm and cheery colors are perfect for getting work done at the large triangular bar. It opens at 11, just in time to grab a beer and get a bit of work done.
Ed Marszewski—editor-publisher of Lumpen, festival host, gallerist and general Chicago indie-art-world guy-around-town—and his brother, Mike, remodeled and renamed Kaplan’s Liquors, the Bridgeport bar that was owned and operated since 1986 by their mother, Maria. The chandeliers built out of bottles and the 300-plus microbrews are notable, but the real standout feature is the welcoming scene: People like each other here, perfect for grabbing a daytime drink and making friends. Plus, now you can order food from Kimski.
A long lineup of craft beer plus sausages and starters like cheese curds make Links the perfect place to settle down and get some work done. There's a few TVs around the bar, in case you're looking for a bit of a distraction; otherwise just grab a spot at a table, fire up the free Wi-Fi and you'll be just fine.
Think coffee shop plus beer–a really really good selection of beer. The always helpful staff can point you in the right direction for a drink while you plug in and work for the afternoon. Hungry? Grab something from a nearby eatery and bring it in, or have the bar order from Gino's East Pizza across the street for you.
This sprawling restaurant/bar features a shocking number of beers on tap and just the kind of food you want to have while sampling beers. The menu includes classics like fried cheese curds, mac and cheese and a terrific kimchi-topped burger—perfect for Loop workers to drop in and grab a cold one before heading back to the office. Come summer, grab a spot on the big outdoor patio for prime people-watching and city views.
It can be hard to snag seats at the pub on game days (the Globe is a hotspot for watching soccer and rugby matches from across the pond), so sneak in on an off-day and hunker down to work. They have a solid selection of craft beer and events like trivia at night; you could stay all day if you wanted.