Chicago Brew Fests: Where the Beer Flows Like Wine

Chicago Brew Fests: Where the Beer Flows Like Wine
Summertime in Chicago. Tis the season in which, for some reason, the guilt you would usually feel after tipping a few beers too many nights in a row is conspicuous only in its absence. A valid excuse is never difficult to find. The weather’s gorgeous — I’ll have a beer. The Cubs are playing tonight... Read more »

Unearthing Tasty Taprooms in the North Woods

Unearthing Tasty Taprooms in the North Woods
Nearly a month has passed since I last chronicled a brewery visit, but I promise it’s not due to laziness; in reality, it’s been that long since I last ponied up at a previously unvisited Chicagoland taproom. A gap of that length is definitely unusual, but it doesn’t mean my palate has moved on from... Read more »

It’s Always Beer O’Clock at Noon Whistle Brewing

It’s Always Beer O’Clock at Noon Whistle Brewing
After spending an enjoyable Father’s Day afternoon at Noon Whistle Brewing in west suburban Lombard, my curiosity — pertaining to the name of the establishment, specifically — led me to the old Google machine. To my surprise and delight, there is a fun little anecdote behind Noon Whistle’s name. As the story goes, the co-owner... Read more »
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From the West Coast to the West Loop: Ballast Point Brewing

From the West Coast to the West Loop: Ballast Point Brewing
About three weeks ago, a new taproom quietly opened in the West Loop, joining neighborhood staple Haymarket and Rick Bayless’ relatively new brewery-taquería combo Cruz Blanca as one of three brewpubs in the uber-gentrified stretch of the Near West Side. Ballast Point Tasting Room and Kitchen is no small addition to the area (or to... Read more »

A Brewery, with a Beer Garden…Finally!

A Brewery, with a Beer Garden…Finally!
I don’t typically write about our more well-known, high-profile breweries — the Half Acres and Revolutions and Goose Islands, if you will — but in the case of Half Acre’s new location, I’d like to make an exception, for a couple reasons: It’s still brand new at less than a year old. It’s awesome. For... Read more »

Metropolitan Offers Scenic Views, Smooth Brews

Metropolitan Offers Scenic Views, Smooth Brews
Metropolitan Brewing offers a rustic, picturesque setting for quenching your thirst on a hot summer day — that is, if you’re able to successfully navigate the construction site that separates the street entrance from the taproom itself. While the hidden, sunlit Avondale space has only been around since late 2016, Metropolitan has been producing consistent, authentic... Read more »
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On Tour Draws a Crowd to Chicago’s Brewing District

On Tour Draws a Crowd to Chicago’s Brewing District
As part of our pre-game for the John Prine concert at the legendary Chicago Theatre last Friday, I decided to introduce my parents to one of my favorite local establishments: On Tour Brewing. After we embarked upon our second flight of beers, it occurred to me that I’d yet to focus a blog post on... Read more »

Spring Brews: Exploring Asheville and Chattanooga

Spring Brews: Exploring Asheville and Chattanooga
There’s no denying it: the water that fuels narrow roadside streams and cascades down wooded ravines in the scenic forests surrounding Asheville serves as an idyllic, picturesque backdrop as you drive into town. But some would argue that it plays an additional, even more significant role: serving as the primary ingredient in some damn fine... Read more »

Pollyanna: An Oasis in the Suburban Wilderness

Pollyanna: An Oasis in the Suburban Wilderness
As a lazy Sunday morning gradually morphed into a lazy Sunday afternoon, cabin fever started to kick in. Enter Pollyanna Brewery and Taproom in Roselle, Illinois — our impromptu solution for fighting off the impending Sunday Scaries. To be clear: this is Pollyanna’s second location. The original, established in 2013 in Lemont, is where the... Read more »
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Greetings from Marz, Bridgeport’s Blossoming Taproom

Greetings from Marz, Bridgeport’s Blossoming Taproom
A day that began at the Garfield Park Conservatory (delightful) and continued at Lagunitas (a reliable old standby) ended at Marz Community Brewing’s recently opened taproom, inconspicuously located in a South Side industrial park just west of Guaranteed Rate Field (or Comiskey Park or The Cell or whatever the hell the Sox call their baseball... Read more »