Its a weekend us lushes crave, a weekend where us being ourselves is not frowned upon but in fact smiled upon, THATS RIGHT FRIENDS I’M TALKING ABOUT THE WEEKEND BEFORE ST PATRICK’S DAY IN CHICAGO! The weekend before St Paddy’s day is a cherished tradition in these parts. And this year I was invited to take part in how the North Side of Chicago celebrates this Blessed Day.
THE NORTH SIDE
Now I’ll be honest, things like the “North Side” aren’t exactly my kind of thing. Namely because I’m not as the kids say “Rich” but I bit the bullet, or the pillow as they say on this side of town, and I decided to see how they did things here.
We (“WE” being Milke, Ozz, and myself) took the Orange Line to the Red Line into the City, I have always loved coming into the City this way, it really lets you get a great view of the City. However we were getting there a little late, so I got to see some wonderful casualties of the day. We met up with some of our friends who were already knee deep in the festivities of the day and we joined them on the bar crawl. Now thats honestly the biggest difference between the two Sides, bar crawls. On the South Side it was always just bedlam in the streets, backpacks filled with beer and just general chaos, (which is probably a real good reason they canceled it) on the North Side they just go down the strip of bars on Clark St. Now of course a lot of this was spilling out on the streets, so it had its on kind of bedlam. Our first stop was a little place called “The Salt and Pepper Diner”
This place actually wasn’t half bad, typical diner, but they served beer, when the day started I really didn’t think I would be cracking open my first beer in a diner, I also had no idea it would be something called McCortley’s Irish Pale Ale.
Pretty solid beer, got things going, drunk people ate. I was getting super impatient with everyone seeing as we had gotten there late and now I’m watching people eat, not my idea of a great time. We ended up leaving that diner to meet up with other people…thing was…. they were at a damn pizza place. So now I’m stuck watching a new set of people eat. The first hour of this “bar crawl” was anything but that, I was basically watching drunk people eat. So the people I had traveled into the city with decided to go into the bar they were sitting in front of a place called “Red Ivy”
We were literally in this place for 15 minutes, I was completely unprepared for something The North Side is completely overpriced. I walked up to order a beer and was met with a swift kick to the stomach, it was 5 bucks for a Bud Light. 5 bucks. I knew it would be more expensive on this side of town, but 5 dollars for a shitty domestic is a slap in the face to everything I know. I immediately regretted coming to this upscale part of town. On top of that you basically couldn’t move it was filled to the brim with party goers. So we counted our losses and ditched that nightmare of a bar.
We got out just in time for the Jackasses we were with to finish their pizza and say what bar was next on the list, a place called “Moe’s Cantina” it seems like a decent place from the outside, but we were met with a line. This made the people we met complain there was a line, the same assholes who sat on a curb and ate pizza, were mad we were going to wait in line. So basically I wrote them off and convinced Milke to join me in another bar “Goose Island”
This bar was the perfect bar to go into after that hellhole “Red Ivy”, it wasn’t completely packed and I was able to saddle up to the bar with ease. They actually had normal beer deals here which was awesome and refreshing, but I wasn’t actually there for regular beer, I was there for a little something called “Green Line.”
Green Line is a beer that they only serve on draft in Chicago, so basically I had to take advantage of one of the few times I’ll be around here and pick some up. It was pretty fantastic, a total change of pace to the other beers I was drinking at the time of course, and not something to just chug down.
We decided after having this beer to FINALLY make our way to the bar we ditched the other turds at. We got in a line and waited it out, and during this time I observed the sights and sounds. It was a sight to behold seeing Asian people wearing their green stunner shades, it was Far East Movement mixed with Lucky Charms! I blame Miller Brewing Company for shit like that, with their “Chi-rish” campaign, what a crock. It was great to see the drunks that just lay in the street as they are about to be hauled off by the cops. While in line I stepped in puke, pretty awesome. We were eventually able to get inside the damned place as the bouncers hauled off another drunk.
Now this place was essentially an upscale sports bar with dance music BLASTING. It was also packed, like most of the other bars, and of course offered the same great deals some of the previous bars did. I bought a 10 dollar vodka red-bull just so I could die a little more on the inside. We actually stayed here for a long time, wayyyyyy tooooo long in fact. While everyone else tried their hand with the very very attractive ladies of the Northside (a point I will always concede, people are just better looking on this side of town, another reason I don’t come here. It makes me fell all insecure and stuff) I decided to just kind of observe this place. For a bunch of people who are celebrating being Irish (or Chi-rish ugh) a “Cantina” sure seems like a weird place to gather. I guess thats just not the point when it comes down to it.
SIDE NOTE: While there they were showing the recent bulls game and watching halftime with the 20th anniversary of the Bulls winning it all was really awesome. Also it made me feel all kinds of old. That footage looks so grainy, like LA looked so dark on the inside like only half the place was lit up. HD is awesome!
After everyone had failed miserably, we made you way to another bar, this one had a cool tough sounding name. Like we needed leather jackets to get in, or show our license to kill. That bar’s name. Rebel.
I think they were being ironic with that name, because…. it looked like all the other bars for the most part. And it lacked just as much fun as the others. Honestly nothing from this bar stands out from my experience there….However I didn’t know the next bar we went to would end up being the best one of the night.
Redmonds was the last bar we went into, and I really liked it, one because it didn’t try to pretend it was something it wasn’t (and it was a shithole for the most part). We were greeted there with green beer, it was cheaper than the other bars (which might be clouding my judgement, that or the alcohol consumption by this point) and it just seemed like everyone was having more fun here. The waitresses were super nice, in fact shockingly nice as I’m guessing they dealt with drunk jackasses from the afternoon until now, so honestly kudos to them.
They also had a little thing going on where when you buy shots you get a fingerless glove. Now I need to procure a pair of these, because I’m a sucker for stupid gimmicks.
So this may have been my favorite bar because they bribed me, or because I wasn’t sandwiched into people, that might be it too, but I’m going with bribe it makes me seem more shallow (let that be a memo to you all, you want me to say nice shit, give me free stuff, simple as that. NO INTEGRITY).
We decided to call it quits after this bar because we didn’t want to miss our train. Of course we missed our train though so I didn’t get back to my beloved South Side until about 4 am, IT RULED!
I know from what I’ve said here it would sound like I had no fun at all quite the contrary it was a really cool experience seeing how the other half lives. Its something I could see myself doing again someday. But no matter how great the women looked, and how much cleaner this side of the city is, my heart will always stay on the South Side. Its just a preference, but I do thank the North Side for having me.