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Chicago's Green Mill Cocktail Lounge

Home > Chicago > Bands | Bars | Jazz | Music Venues
by Beth McGowan (subscribe)
I am a British traveller with a love for writing, photography, and fun! Hoping to share some of my experiences with the world. :)
Published January 23rd 2015
Al Capone drank here so should you
One of the best things about living in Chicago is its obvious connection with gangsters in the prohibition. On moving here I couldn't wait to learn about Al Capone's local spots and drink in some of the old speakeasies.

Although we still have a lot to find (many speakeasies are still have hidden doorways) we learned about The Green Mill and thought we'd give it a go.

We took the CTA from the Chicago loop which took about half hour to get to the location. It was Tuesday night, a band called 'The Fat Babies' were playing, the cover was $5 and that's all we really knew.



As we walked in it was like going back in time. It was dark and dingy with very soft low lighting, there were murals on the wall and the whole look and feel of the place had been kept like it once was.

We were seated in a booth in the middle of the bar which faced away from the stage. We thought this a little odd. Our waitress asked what we wanted and denied the use of a 'cocktail list.' They served traditional old fashioned cocktails but managed to make me a Margarita after a bit of convincing.



After being blown away how truly awesome this place was we decided to Google some of its history. Turns out we were sat in Al Capone's booth, the reason it faced away from the stage was because it faced toward the two entrances to the bar so he could escape if need be. It was also recommended that we try Malort, a liquor only made in Chicago. My boyfriend tried it as I couldn't bring myself to do it and he confirmed that it was quite disgusting.

By this time the band began to play. I had never seen a full band in such a small venue, they played music from the 'Charleston' era and to my surprise most of the people in the building got up to dance. Not only were they up dancing, they knew the dances, and the switched partners with strangers, it was like something out of The Great Gatsby. It was mesmerizing. I found myself thinking how it is such a shame that we, as a generation, did not dance anymore, well, not like this anyway.

Band roaring 20s chicago
Take me back to the roaring 20s

I genuinely could have stayed there all night and I intend to go back as often as possible.
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Why? For a genuine Chicago experience
When: Every night
Phone: 7738785552
Where: 4802 n. Broadway, chicago, IL, 60640
Cost: Depends on the band average at $7
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