Best Bars For Singles In Chicago

July 17, 2014 7:00 AM

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A few decades ago, “singles’ bar” still meant Rush Street and neck chains gleaming from tanned skin and chest hair. Today, Chicago offers spaces for single mingling disguised as laid-back taverns and hotel bars as well as the venerable dance club and dive bar. Are these the “best?” Beauty, and the ideal bar for singles, is in the eye of the beholder.
(Photo Credit: Slippery Slope's Facebook)

(Photo Credit: Slippery Slope’s Facebook)

Slippery Slope
2357 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 799-8504

A singles’ dance clubby bar in 60647 zip code? Tis a slippery slope, however you can still get a Logan Square-priced Hamm’s for a couple of bucks as well as an $8 cocktail that’s pre-mixed and in a bottle so you can dance with it. DJs, booming tunes, a dimly lit bar and a dance floor make it easy to make your moves on all kinds of levels and then move onto Skee Ball or the photo booth to deepen your new relationship. If you’re alone by night’s end, you can still score with an order of the Mother-in-Law, swiped from the south side: the Mother-in-Law is a tamale smothered in vegan chile.

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(Photo Credit:

Sportsman’s Club
948 N. Western Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622
(872) 206-8054

If the Northwoods and gym shoes are more your style than the Gold Coast and stilettos, hike over to Humboldt Park’s Sportsman’s Club. The cash-only, low-key bar is dotted with comfy booths and taxidermy and please call those pouring the drinks bartenders, not “mixologists” for heaven’s sake. The cozy neighborhood tavern has a patio for warm weather mingling over classic cocktails that your granddad would have loved – that means no fancy infusions or a list of ingredients as long as your arm. You can order a bottle of Hamm’s or Polish Okocim, a nice glass of 2007 Gamay or a crazy/good Gin Grenadine cocktail.

Punch House
1227 W. 18th St.
Chicago, IL 60608
(312) 526-3851

Pilsen, aka the new Bucktown/Wicker Park, means the hipster vibe is in full force at Punch House (in the best possible way) and the drinks are delightfully forceful, too. Expect a sincere welcome from behind the bar and zero pretension at the two-level space (in the basement of historic Thalia Hall) which offers dancing, food, comfortable booths, a rec room atmosphere and carafes and bowls of punch. Show up for the rotating series of hi-brow DJ nights for a truly 21st-century singles’ experience.

Related: Best Clubs For Pop Music In Chicago

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The Berkshire Room
Acme Hotel
15 E. Ohio St.
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 894-0800

For a dark, sexy lounge and some of the most robust, seasonal cocktails in the city, the Berkshire Room in the tres casual Acme Hotel can’t be beat. Although the adult beverages may not transform your game, they can make the whole process a heck of a lot easier. Some of the house cocktails include “Cheap Sunglasses” (gin, Green Chartreuse, basil and Angostura Bitters served in an antique coupe) and the “Weston” which mixes wheated bourbon, Dark Matter Coffee Essence and pipe tobacco. Get there early on a Friday or Saturday night if you want a table, or make a reservation – it’s that popular with the post-work and weekend crowd.

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(Photo Credit:

2771 N. Lincoln Ave.
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 472-2771

Delilah’s is the quintessential friendly bar with pinball, pool, whiskey, women and men who want to have fun, meet each other and not spend a quarter of their rent in a night. The eclectic music mix can get overpowering and elbow room thin, but everyone seems to love Delilah’s authentic “divey” atmosphere and horror movies flickering on the TV sets.

Related: Best Bars With Board Games In Chicago

Jacky Runice has been a columnist with the Daily Herald Chicago since grunge music and flannel was the new black. Her fingers and gray matter have been busy as travel editor of Reunions Magazine; penning a column that was syndicated around the nation via Tribune Media Services. Her work can be found at

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