Comprehensive Guide to Bars and Nightclubs in Illinois

Comprehensive Guide to Bars and Nightclubs in Illinois

Are you always on the lookout for your next favorite bar? Great bars and nightclubs are more than just good booze. They have a unique atmosphere, décor, music, and amenities. They’re something to write home about, or Tweet about.

Great bars and nightclubs are more than just good booze. They have a unique atmosphere, décor,…
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What are some of the hallmarks of an awesome bar or nightclub that you’ll want to visit again and again?  Huge list of local brew or craft cocktails with neat names. How about an airy deck or patio? Or maybe pool tables and shuffleboard, lots of T.V.s, juke boxes, disco balls, one-of-a-kind menu items, retro furnishings, and the coolest music. The selection of the best nightclubs and bars in Illinois below has something for everyone.


Check out this list of buzz-worth bars and nightclubs in Illinois:


  • Hangar 9, Carbondale: This place looks like an airplane hangar with the best local bands, two levels, and garage doors to invite in the summer breeze.


  • The Foundry, Aurora: Here’s the spot if you want a cool place to watch the game. Check out the 22 huge projection screens, OTB, tobacco shop, volley ball, pool tables, and shuffleboard.


  • The Aviary, Chicago: Of course, a joint this swanky has a “cocktail kitchen.” Sip imaginative drinks that are feasts for the senses while you enjoy the show behind the bar.


  • Rock Island Public House, Blue Island: Come for the rotating 16-tap list and stay for the old school juke box and picnic tables on the patio.


  • Disco, Chicago: If you need awesome backdrops for your Instagram posts, this retro paradise is the ticket. Check out the massive mirror balls, huge under-lit dance floor, champagne, and late-night disco, funk, and soul.


  • Richard’s on Main, Peoria: There’s cheap PBR and a helpful breathalyzer on the wall, but it’s the Clydesdale Challenge that must be seen to be believed: Texas Toast, burger, ham, turkey, and chicken smothered in cheesy cheese fries.


  • Half Acre Beer Company, Chicago: Play board games and sip the inventive brew of an ambitious brewer.


  • Logan Arcade, Chicago: One of the best arcade bars calls a converted hardware store home and offers diverse array of craft beers.


  • Liquid Blues, Woodstock: Looking for an offbeat hang out with beaded curtains and lava lamps? This is the place for you.


  • Studio Paris, Chicago: Here’s an exclusive nightclub with local celebrities, swanky décor, bottle service reservations, and intimate sets from hot touring DJs and musicians.


  • Firkin, Libertyville: A haven for beer geeks with a 30-tap list, Firkin also offers enticing bites like lobster tacos and duck nachos.


  • Beauty Bar, Chicago: How about something cool and kitschy? Manicures and martinis, disco balls and sparkly walls, beauty salon furniture and themed happy hours.


  • Meier’s Tavern, Glenview: Solidify your hipster cred and make this former speakeasy with the cool vintage neon sign your new hang-out joint. A proper dive with cheap burgers and booze.


  • Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Chicago: Want to check out the former stomping grounds of Chicago’s most notorious mobsters? This North Side lounge has been called the best throwback jazz scene.


  • Palmer Place, LaGrange: Impress out-of-town guests and take them to this beer heaven with 39 taps, 300 bottles, and a triple-level patio.


  • East Room, Chicago: This hot night club attracts local tastemakers and awesome national acts.


  • Smart Bar, Chicago: If you’re serious about dancing, this is the place to go. Home to internationally known acts and cutting-edge DJs, Smart Bar echoes Chicago’s dance music history with a European sound system and the best house music.


  • The Violet Hour, Chicago: Ground zero for the Chicago mixology craze will impress visitors and natives alike. It’s so cool, there’s no sign outside, just a big mural.



No matter your tastes or interests, Illinois has a super cool bar or nightclub for you. And it’s not just Chicago. Get out of the city and explore small towns and venues.


Do you love beers, wines, and cocktails so much that you’re considering becoming a bartender? Employees of all on-premise establishments in 40 counties must take the BASSET alcohol seller/server training. The best way to get this essential training is with Learn2Serve, Illinois’ #1 BASSET certification provider. Enroll in convenient interactive, online training trusted by over 500,000 sellers and servers.





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