Moonshine (CLOSED)

1824 W Division St, Chicago, IL, 60622, United States
(773) 862-8686
Latitude: 41.90323, Longitude: -87.67355


Wifi Available
Cask Beer
Indoor Smoking
Available Parking
Beer Pricing: $$
Public Transit
Proper Glassware
Outdoor Seating
Family Friendly
Selection: 2.55 | Atmosphere: 3.45 | Service: 3.40 | Food: 4.00
out of 100
Overall Beer Mapping Score
Based on 5 reviews.
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dpaxson2 (74)
Monday 28th of June 2010 09:18:09 PM
My last visit was 6 months ago and within the last two years Moonshine has started to carry their own "home brews". I tried two different kinds in December and don't have any ambition to go back. I applaud them for trying to diversify their beer selection, which is not extensive, but the quality wasn't there.

The food is decent and if you can get a table they have a nice outdoor seating area. But in terms of the beer being the draw, it really isn't.
Selection: 2 | Atmosphere: 3.5 | Service: 3 | Food: 3.75

joelambic (46)
Thursday 30th of July 2009 02:54:59 AM
My first visit. I got there before 5:00 and the weather was very nice so most patrons were seated outside. I initially thought they had no in-house beers so started with a Mad Hatter. I then saw the sign for 773 Light Summer Ale so tried one of them. It's a pretty decent light beer if a little on the malty "sweet" side for my palate. That being said, I "sampled" several of them before leaving.

I would like to see more than one in-house beer on at any given time but can understand production limitations. The food dishes being served looked and smelled wonderful so another visit is on my list of things to do if only to sample the food offerings.

I'm not sure if wifi is available. I did notice several access points but all were locked down and did not have an obvious name relative to the establishment. I did not ask the staff about an access point so can't confirm whether one of the ones I detected were associated with the pub.
Selection: 2 | Atmosphere: 3 | Service: 3 | Food: N/A

bobcat78 (210)
Monday 22nd of June 2009 11:20:26 PM
I should have read the reviews before I went here. Place has a nice patio and appeared to be in a fun neighborhood. That is about all that can be said from a positive perspective. Had 4 microbrews listed inside, which they replied they were out of all of them and would not have any for a few weeks. If you give off the idea you are a brewpub, this should not ever happen. Also offered Bells Oberon and was out of that. Had a Fat Tire and called it a night.
Selection: 1 | Atmosphere: 3.5 | Service: 3.25 | Food: N/A

emerge077 (360)
Monday 8th of December 2008 09:32:16 PM
2010 update:
Gave Moonshine one more chance, and stopped in on a pub crawl recently. First thing I noticed were all the new names on the beer list, and a good variety of styles. There were 6 house taps: IPA (great), Smoked Porter (good), Dark Mild (good), Pale (mediocre), Irish Dry Stout (decent), Scotch Ale (ok). So the selection and quality have improved. During the day the crowd was relaxed, and they had all the windows open which was nice. They have a new chef i've heard good things about too. Worth a try if you're in the area, but still not a destination in my opinion.

2008-12-08: overall 53.3
This year Moonshine finally hired someone to brew beer on-site, to fit in with their pseudo-bootlegger theme. For years it has been a trendy see-and-be-seen concept bar/restaurant, with arguably the most irritating patio patrons in the neighborhood, wooo-ing and cackling while blocking the sidewalk in the warmer months. Club DJs play at night, catering to the martini trixies and button down & khakis crowd. I've avoided it like the plague for years now, passing it by on the way to more craft-friendly options nearby like Jerry's, Small Bar, Piece, Rodan, Handlebar, etc.

So in the spirit of being objective, I went over after work to try the beers and something off the menu. It was early in the evening, there were a couple suits with mason jar mixed-drinks at one end the bar, and some swearing cops on the other side, shouting "conversation" at each other across cavernous room. The place was large with high ceilings, and definitely gets pretty noisy. Lots of flatscreens playing sportscenter. The bartender was talking to the server and running a football pool, so it initially took a little while to get service. Once he noticed me, service was smooth after that. I tried all five beers they had, and there was a $3 house pint special on Mondays, (typically $5). Nolan the bartender was able to describe all the beers, and deferred to the manager for the abv on a couple. He said the brewing ingredients are sourced locally from other brewers in some cases. Sadly the only beer worth mentioning was the Sin City Stout, which was decent at best. The other pale ale variations all seemed similarly undercarbonated and pedestrian. The only other notable tap I saw was Matilda, the rest were pretty typical pseudo craft like Fat Tire, and common imports like Stella. They served tastes of the tap beers in little baby food jars. Bottled beers weren't on display or listed on the menu, though their website has a list that is 2/3 common macros and imports.

The Austin burger ($11) turned out to be the highlight, with bacon, cheddar, fried onions, and green chiles. It was on a brioche style bun and was very hearty and tasty. The specialty burgers were a new addition to the menu (last month or so), there were maybe 9 of them, all named after cities. The food seemed to have a southwestern slant, likely because the owners apparently live in New Mexico. Overall, this place had some decent food, I would come here for lunch possibly, but would skip it for dinner or drinking in general.

Selection: 3.75 | Atmosphere: 3.25 | Service: 4 | Food: 4.0
Monday 16th of June 2008 11:31:51 AM

This person needs 3 or more reviews on the site for their scores to start counting.

Any respectable beer enthusiast would be wise to steer clear of the slag this place is serving as 'some hoembrew' as one bartender explained to me. Think of a new homebrewer selling their first batch behind the bar. There were three syles on tap when I visited. All were uninspiring and flat. If you're looking for world class brewed beer, go the extra 3-4 blocks up to Piece. If you're looking for some bar to make a half-assed attempt to cash in on the craft brewery resurgence Moonshine is for you.
Selection: 0.25 | Atmosphere: 0.25 | Service: 1 | Food: N/A

pudgym29 (55)
Saturday 29th of March 2008 05:17:51 PM
Moonshine is a bar and grill which underwent an upgrade. It now has ten beers on draft. Four are good, three are 'bridge' beers, and three are dreadful. It is mostly a entertainment venue (particularly for DJs).
The venue has two parts. The dining room area, with one bar which is where its beers are served; and a slightly-elevated bar off to the east which has two flat panel, high-definition television sets above.
I have increased the 'Atmosphere' score by ¼-point because of the _clientele_ that was here when I visited.
I do not sit outside for the most part. I sit at the main bar at the north end of the venue. This is also where you should sit if you do not want to see the TVs along the east edge (with a separate bar) here.

Transit options: The venue is closest to the Division Blue Line “L” station (2½ blocks east). See my review of Piece for details of the Blue Line's rehabilitation. The #9 Ashland bus runs all the time on that portion of Ashland. Owl service northbound [after 12:30 am] runs to the North | Clybourn Red Line “L” station. The #70 Division bus runs until 12:40 am eastbound - 1:20 am westbound.
Selection: 4 | Atmosphere: 4 | Service: 3.75 | Food: 3.5

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