By Lauren Wulf
Christmas may only come once a year, but the bars featured below like to stay in the spirit all year long. With twinkling Christmas lights hung every day there’s a cozy boost in store for you whenever you’re in the mood for a little holiday magic.
1925 W. Cortland
With Christmas lights year-round, flip cup tables and a warm, rustic feel, you’ll feel right in the spirit of things at Lottie’s Pub. Located on the corner of Cortland and Winchester, Lottie’s Pub offers a wide selection of beer and liquor as well as a menu stacked with bar favorites including sandwiches, salads and burgers. This local pub and landmark provides the perfect setting for a cold winter holiday.
Joe’s On Broadway
3563 North Broadway
Chicago, IL 60657
For a no-fuss, cheap place to drink and soak up Christmas lights, look no further than Joe’s Bar in Lakeview. This local watering hole features Christmas lights all year long, antique photos, antlers, mounted fish and best of all, cheap drinks. Of course, that list fits all the requirements of a neighborhood dive bar. The warm, no-frills atmosphere also provides a much-needed respite from the other nearby, crowded bars of Wrigleyville/Lakeview.
806 N. Rush St
Pippin’s Tavern is in the heart of the Gold Coast, just off the Mag Mile. No matter what season it is, you’ll know you’re at Pippin’s by the Christmas lights strung from its iconic sign. Great drink prices, location and welcoming atmosphere keep locals, tourists, shoppers, Loyola students and alum (like yours truly) coming back to this cozy tavern.
20 West Division Street
Chicago, IL 60610
With Christmas lights strung from the historic walls, 365 days a year, Butch McGuire’s is an icon on the Division Street bar scene. During Holiday season, the bar gets even more jolly with a major Christmas amp up. According to the history of Butch McGuire’s, what started out as a few balloons and homemade ornaments has now turned into a stunning array of lights, garland, quirky mobiles, and two impressive double-decker trains that run throughout the main bar and antique room.
Cork & Kerry
10614 South Western Avenue
This historic Chicago White Sox bar may not have Christmas lights year-round, but the lights and decor they put up during the holidays are more than enough to make up for the rest of the year! Thousands of string lights and Christmas decorations adorn every surface.
A little piece of history:
“The Cork might have been ‘ala’ Butch McGuire’s during the Christmas season being that our family worked for Butch for many years. My father started in 1962, a year after Butch opened his saloon and I began my young career at the age of 13 working for Butch, which lasted eight years. The Cork was mentioned as one of the best places to visit during the Christmas season by USA Today… Butch taught us well.” – Chad Weiler, original owner of Cork & Kerry (December 22, 2010)
Lauren Wulf, CBS Chicago