Tag: COVID-19

Some of the Beer Places We Lost (And Gained) in 2020

Some of the Beer Places We Lost (And Gained) in 2020
Maybe we would need a summary of the places that have closed down in 2020 after all. We have seen a lot of change brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic: some beer places had to close to public service entirely, or reopen at greatly diminished capacity. Some have been able to make the “pivot” to... Read more »

Chicago Restricted Craft Beer Weekend, October 23-25

Chicago Restricted Craft Beer Weekend, October 23-25
Update: Now the other shoe had dropped. Just a few days after the "collar counties" were put under new COVID restrictions, Mayor Lightfoot has reinstated restrictions on Chicago businesses. No indoor dining service at taverns and taprooms without a food service license, and a 10 pm curfew on all nonessential businesses. I am hoping to keep up with changes to bar schedules as I find them. Story at Chicago Tribune. I'm posting a little early for two reasons. First, the increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases has required the lockdown to be re-instituted in Will, DuPage, Kane and Kankakee. That means outdoor seating only, carryout howlers and crowlers where available, and earlier closing time. Full details at this link (WGN). I will keep updating with cancellations or changes. As always, call ahead, and wear your mask! But we already have a casualty, though it's in Chicago. Hamburger Mary, the LGBQT+ bar chain, is closing it's Andersonville outpost. The last day of operation will be November 1, but the originally planned schedule of events will go on until then. The Facebook announcement noted that they had planned to seek a new location as their lease expired, but for now they will wait until the business environment improves. This their Andersonville Brewing operation had already been replaced with a tap room for Urban Brew Labs. The spinoff Oak Park Brewing Co. remains independently operated...

Chicago Craft Beer Weekend, July 24-26

Chicago Craft Beer Weekend, July 24-26
Noting that one of the hot new brewers, Liquid Love, will be transition from contract brewing to its own space. They will be taking over Prairie Krafts Brewing in Buffalo Grove, which will be briefly closed during the transition. Dates will be announced later. Meanwhile, Guthrie's Tavern on Southport is calling it quits. The beer bar has not been able to hold up during the COVID-19 shutdown, and will be saying goodbye after 34 years. Their last day of operation was Thursday, July 23. We have been retreating on the COVID-19 situation: bars and taverns without a food license in Chicago are scheduled to close their indoor spaces as of Friday. We'll try to keep fresh information coming here...
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Week in Chicago Craft Beer, July 20-23

Week in Chicago Craft Beer, July 20-23
Check the Monday list, and we see that some of the places that had to close down when it appeared employees had been exposed to COVID-19, have finished sanitizing and will be reopening. It's Saturday night as I prepare this article, and the AC in the Beeronaut Lair has conked out. We're all kind of miserable, but I did get the kids out for their first taste of Rainbow Cones today. I have got all the events I could find listed here, but I'm going to post this and try to sleep, either in bed or in the basement...

Chicago Area Craft Beer Weekend, June 5-7

Chicago Area Craft Beer Weekend, June 5-7
With more establishments moving toward limited reopening in Phase 3 of the COVID-19 virus shut down, I'm taking the optimistic step of removing my articles detailing self-quarantine business hours from the "sticky" status on my blogroll. Part of this is due to the fact that decisions on re-opening are being made at the last minute. These events could change again at the last minute due to curfews or management concern from the current civic unrest in the area. I will try to keep up by updating status here. As places are reopening, I have been listing live music shows and food truck events, which was not my custom during the times when the calendar was much more crowded. But I want to give our beer joints a shout out for any event that might bring us out for some socially distant socializing...

Chicago Suburban Craft Beer Re-Opening Weekend, May 29-31

Chicago Suburban Craft Beer Re-Opening Weekend, May 29-31
Update: It's Thursday evening and I am still adding listings for re-opening establishments. Up to 30, and still that's not all of them. I have found a clarification: So far, only suburban locations will be able to enter Phase 3 this weekend. Places in Chicago are working on opening for next Friday. I have also had to truncate much of the information on safety restrictions that each place has listed, to spare your scrolling thumbs. I cannot guarantee each one will have the same set of rules, so check ahead. I have tried to differentiate who is taking only reservations, and who is "first come, first served."
Hey, there! It's late Wednesday night and I'd hoped by now that I'd a nice big list of all the Illinois-side-of-the-line brewers and bars doing the socially-distant reopening this weekend. But then I had 3 extra hours of work from home tonight. Gotta watch my priorities: writing about beer while drinking beer, or making extra money which can be used to buy more beer… Hmm… So I have a start on the establishments that have announced their weekend plans. I'll keep adding to this list, though I'm sure I'll miss some. Many places may not be opening because they have not got space for outdoor seating, or they're still working with their home towns and guidelines. So if you plans on going out to these places, please do check their websites for all the restrictions they might require, especially if they can only seat people who reserve in advance. And please follow the rules about wearing your mask. You might be able to take it of while eating or drinking. Don't be a dick and ruin it for the rest of the state...
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Chicago Post-Memorial Beer Week, May 26-28

Chicago Post-Memorial Beer Week, May  26-28
I'm putting this out (minus the Monday for Memorial Day) and hoping to start compiling reopening plans for Chicago area bars and beer brewers starting Friday, May 29th. These will all be restricted to outdoor seating spaces, so not everyone will be able to open...

Chicago's Memorial Day Beer Weekend, May 22-25

Chicago's Memorial Day Beer Weekend, May 22-25
Update: In the midst of these strange times and of places closing down, I've just added news of two new brewers opening this weekend! Art History Brewing in Geneva is open for carryout beer orders, and Urban Forest Craft Brewing opens Saturday in Rockford! Check the details below!
First, the good news (maybe): The state of Illinois and Gov. Pritzker announced Wednesday that bars and restaurants may open for limited outdoor seating starting Friday, May 29. I will try to keep up with posted plans, and get out an early events schedule as a learn about them (Chicago Tribune article). And, some not-so-good news (maybe): Rather than open along with other establishments in Indiana, Three Floyds brewpub in Munster had furloughed its employees, and not set a date for a possible return. The move has been speculated as based on financial issues, or the Floyds' slow progress on a new facility, founder Nick Floyd told Josh Noel, “I can’t put people in danger. No one should die over a beer. I would die for beer and probably will, but I’m not going to make people endanger themselves.” The fact that the brewpub only has space for 70 patrons may have contributed to the decision. Three Floyds commercial brewing and distilling operations will continue (Chicago Tribune). Also of note: This is the last weekend for Brixie's, the Brookfield beer bar opened in 1934. The bar was purchased by Imperial Oak of Willow Springs, which will be turning it into a second brewery and taproom. Chris DiBraccio had been managing Brixie's since 2002, taking over from his father-in-law Russel Brixie. DiBraccio is also one of the owners of Imperial Oak. More details below. I've left a space for Monday events for the Memorial Day holiday. Usually holidays are pretty light, beer-wise, but something may be announced at the last-minute...

Chicago Craft Beer Remote Week, May 18-21

Chicago Craft Beer Remote Week, May 18-21
Our experiment in isolation may start to show some cracks, as restaurants in Indian start opening this week. Will new rules for keep separated from fellow patrons prove useful, or will we be closed down again by weeks end...
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Chicago Remote Craft Beer Weekend, May 15-17

Chicago Remote Craft Beer Weekend, May 15-17
It appears some beer establishments in Indiana may be opening up further this weekend. I'll try to have some updates on the list of open bars and brewers on my right rail, what they call that column over there——>...
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    Mark McDermott

    Writer, trivia maven, fan of many things. I thought to learn all there is to know about beer as a way to stay interested in learning. It is my pleasure to bring Chicago's craft beer scene to you.

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