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Here's Our Counter To Complex Mag's "25 Douchiest Bars In Chicago" List

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Apr 4, 2012 3:00PM

Simon's Tavern: A Chicagoist-approved, douche-free bar. (Photo credit: Elliot Mandel)

Complex magazine's "25 Douchiest Bars in Chicago" list that went viral yesterday is a textbook case of trolling, mostly for the addition of Smart Bar on the list, which had the comments blazing. What I found most curious about the list was that it seemed to center on specific neighborhoods, in addition to bars, trafficking in cliche to write what ultimately was a cliched article. Complex's list could have easily have been titled "The 25 Douchiest Bars in Lakeview/Wrigleyville, River North and Wicker Park."

One reader of the piece responded, "it would be more apt to make a list of 25 NON douchey bars in Chicago." This got us thinking here at Chicagoist that such a list is right in our wheelhouse. Besides, having nice things to say about something does better wonders for our disposition than ragging on something, like a list of douchey bars.

We set up a few parameters in the interest of fairness.

- The bars that made our list should have a "come one, come all" policy.
- Quality of drinks was another factor.
- We wanted our list to reflect Chicago's "city of neighborhoods" motto, so that we could expand past trendy neighborhoods.
- The bars on this list made the cut because more than one person on staff agreed on them. (As a one time Edgewater resident, I was pleasantly surprised to find multiple recommendations for the Fireside.)
- Finally, we decided to eschew cool points because, let's be honest, only douches keep track of that.

Our list contains 26 bars, giving you one to grow on.

By no means is this a definitive list, and I'm sure readers will let us know where we're wrong and what should have been added. Feel free to opine.

Here's our list.

  • Fireside Restaurant and Lounge (5739 N. Ravenswood)
  • Maria's Community Bar (960 W. 31st St.)
  • Green Eye (2403 W. Homer)
  • Beat Kitchen (2100 W. Belmont)
  • The Hungry Brain (2319 W. Belmont)
  • The Corner (2224 N. Leavitt)
  • Hideout (1354 W. Wabansia)
  • Big Chicks (5024 N. Sheridan Rd.)
  • The Whirlaway (3224 W. Fullerton)
  • Bucktown Pub (1658 W. Cortland)
  • Gold Star (1755 W. Division)
  • Long Room (1612 W. Irving Park Rd.)
  • Twin Anchors (1655 N. Sedgwick)
  • Skylark (2149 S. Halsted)
  • Brehon's Pub (731 N. Wells St.)
  • Red Line Tap (7006 N. Glenwood)
  • The Lighthouse (1236 W. Chase)
  • L&L Tavern (3207 N. Clark St.)
  • Horseshoe (4115 N. Lincoln)
  • Duke's (2616 N.Clark St.)
  • Three Aces (1321 W. Taylor St.)
  • Woodlawn Tap (1172 E. 55th St.)
  • Simon's (5210 N. Clark St.)
  • Ten Cat (3931 N. Ashland Ave.)
  • Happy Village (1059 N. Wolcott)
  • MCM Pub and Eatery (3906 N. Cicero Ave.)