6 Chicago Bars to Class Up Your St. Patty’s Day (Yes, It’s Possible)
It’s your lucky day
Don’t let the bagpipes scare you. St. Patty’s Day is coming, but you can avoid drunken bros sporting leprechaun hats. Here’s what to do: steer clear of Division Street and head to any one of these Irish venues instead.
Two reasons to love this spot: The bar program is all about Ireland, and college kids don’t even know how to find this swanky spot. (For your eyes only, it’s on the 18th floor of a Northwestern outpatient pavilion.) Try the MacSwiney, inspired by the 250,000-piece stained glass window of Irish patriot Terence MacSwiney in the Old St. Patrick's Church. Don't worry, though--it's served in just one glass: yours.
259 E. Erie St., 18th fl.; 312-337-0101 or greenriverchi.com
Lady Gregory’s Irish Bar & Restaurant
This is the perfect spot for a ladies’ brunch or even a date. In the back, a cozy library has a roaring fireplace and piles of books. Grab a table and order something extra Irish. May we suggest the shepherd’s pie?
5260 N. Clark St.; 773-271-5050 or ladygregorys.com
O’Shaughnessy’s Public House
The college crowd prefers Wrigleyville over Ravenswood. So if you want to avoid the chaos, try the homey and relaxed O’Shaughnessy’s. It looks like it was plucked out of Dublin’s Temple Bar neighborhood. And its menu (think fish and chips, Guinness and potato-leek soup) gives off the same authentic vibe.
4557 N. Ravenswood Ave.; 773-944-9896 or oshaughnessyschicago.com
Dublin’s Bar & Grill
Yes, this pub and restaurant is in the Gold Coast. But it’s not what you think--it’s a few blocks removed from Division Street, and the crowd here is pretty tame. Plus, the food is surprisingly delicious. There are Irish staples like fish and chips and corned beef and cabbage, but there are also tasty outliers. Trust us when we say the Mediterranean chicken is yum.
1050 N. State St.; 312-266-6340
D4 Irish Pub & Café
With brass chandeliers, leather banquettes and two fireplaces, D4 is a more handsome version of your typical Chicago Irish pub. And it doesn’t exactly serve your typical potato skins, either. Here, you’ll have to choose between curry chips, short-rib nachos or steamed mussels. Or, ya know what? Order them all. It’s a holiday, after all.
345 E. Ohio St.; 312-624-8385 or d4pub.com
Peach and Green
And if drinking’s not your thing, start your day here. With sister cafés all over Dublin, this Irish export serves breakfast and lunch. Translation: There’s no Jameson in site, so your chances of being hit on a by a guy wearing clover beads are slim. Start your St. Patrick’s Day off with something green--Matcha lattes, kale smoothies and green eggs and ham are all on the menu.
33 S. Wabash Ave.; 312-263-5849 or peachandgreen.com