Wednesday 5th of December 2012 04:24:13 PM link
Bottom Lounge is a cool place to see a concert. The concert portion is in the back, but the front part of the building is a bar. I've been there for both shows and just to get dinner. The beer selection is impressive, with a large variety and some beers I've never seen before. One downside, many times they are out of the unique beers. I'll usually immediately order a beer I've never seen and about 60% of the time they are out (of the truly small beers, more mainstream ones are usually in stock).
The food was OK. Kind of wish it was better, but it's passable for sure. The decor on the inside is cool, with a Blackhawks vs Canada pinball machine that I've only seen in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. There is a roof top to the place that is open in the summer, but I haven't been up there yet.
For a concert venue, you won't get better beer options in the city. The selection is great, just temper excitement until you know the beer you want is in stock.
Selection: 4.25 |
Atmosphere: 4.25 |
Service: 4 |
Monday 10th of November 2008 10:21:32 AM link
Stopped in here after FoBAB '08 for some grub...it was surprisingly close to the Plumbers Union Hall. It was early in the evening, no bands yet, so it was not especially jumpin'. There are several double doors at the entrance, up a couple stairs, and the bar to the back right. The floors and walls were all black, with a Duvel neon above the bar casting a sinister red glow. We sat in a nice corner booth by the front windows, and nary a soul passed by while we were there. The area can get deserted at times, but it picks up later at night.
The drafts were pretty standard, their bottle list had more gems. Ended up splitting a 750 of Bam Biere ($15) to go with a blackened salmon sandwich ($9). The food was tasty, and not greasy. Their beer menu is listed online with prices, which is nice: http://www.bottomlounge.com/beermenu.php
This location is definitely a step up from the old incarnation of Bottom Lounge in Lakeview. It has dark rock n' roll sort of vibe, but is also open and airy, so it doesn't get too claustrophobic. Apparently they have a roof patio with a skyline view, so i'll be sure to return to see that when it warms up. Our server was really friendly and prompt with our drinks. Again, it was early evening, so there wasn't a crowd.
Selection: 4 |
Atmosphere: 4 |
Service: 4.25 |
Sunday 7th of September 2008 10:10:47 PM link
A venue which proclaimed that it would reopen _reopened_.
I never went to a show at the former Bottom Lounge. It was on the side street a Β½-block east of Sheffield at Belmont. The CTA foreclosed on the property because it needed the land to remodel the busy Belmont Red | Brown | Purple Lines "L" station. I probably was unaware of the acts being booked, and I have always tried to avoid 'trendy' venues where the emphasis is as much on the audience as the performing acts. I am going to be quite obvious in most music bars, and probably not in a positive sense.
But when I learned that Mike Miller of Delilah's was one of the tri-partners for the new Bottom Lounge (that font in its newspaper ad looked _very familiar_); I deduced I had better visit it.
I was here initially on a Wednesday night. I was only on the main floor. At this point in time, I was also alarmingly low on funds.
Mike is definitely selecting many of the beers and spirits being offered at the bar on the main floor. But I had to sleaze out completely this time. I was confined to the el-cheapo $2.00 16-ounce cans of Miller High Life and Pabst Blue Ribbon.
The venue is very large.
I am fairly certain this is going to be a great venue. For some reason, although I do not believe in ATMs, I am distressed that the ATM here gives its user no information whatsoever about to which ATM networks it belongs, or how much its fee is. There are some drawbacks. You are alongside the Pink & Green Line "L". Trains operate frequently throughout the day and when they pass, music and conversation are going to be drowned out.
The venue subscribes to Comcast cable TV, and it has the digital tier. There are two flat-screen TVs above the bar. Those are turned off in the 10 pm hour [typically, after the evening's b**eball game ends]; but there are two other smaller TVs elsewhere on the first floor, and those stayed on. (Ask the bar staff to select one of the 'Something Weird' videos from Comcast's free video-on-demand service.) The juke box earned an extra half-star for having a Goblins CD thereupon.
I was here the second time on a Friday night. This time, I had more money.
I did not mention the massive chalkboard on the west wall near the bar on the first floor. This has all its beers, classified by draft or bottle [| can] and grouped by price. Pricing is average. You will get a _better_ beer bargain depending on the night of the week. This night I stuck with drafts. My favorite here was the Great Lakes [Cleveland, OH.] Edmund Fitzgerald Porter. I've been to Great Lakes in Cleveland scores of times. I was there the night before the CRUNCH won the indoor soccer Championship in April 1994. The Edmund Fitzgerald Porter is a world-class beer, and it tasted the same here as it did in Cleveland. Yay.
I also had the Mendocino Red Tail Ale, Brooklyn Lager, and Point Pale Ale. I thought the Point Pale Ale's line was dirty. I was detecting diacetyl in it; something which I do not recall from its bottled version.
Transit options: You're going to walk the two blocks west to the Ashland "L" station. Both lines cease running at 1:00 am seven days a week. If the band is really cooking, and you don't get out of there until closing time; depending on circumstances, you might consider walking two blocks south on Ada St. to Madison St. for the #20 bus, which runs all night.
Selection: 4.25 |
Atmosphere: 3.75 |
Service: 3.75 |
Tuesday 8th of July 2008 10:24:34 PM link
Bottom Lounge is supposedly an old music venue that has moved locations. I'm not totally sure what this means, but it definitely is open and airy like you would expect from a music venue.
The bar is a long wooden bar that is centered on the 12 to 15 taps and three or four door glass fronted beer cooler. The taps aren't knock you down exciting or anything, but they are solid (especially for a music venue).
They do have a small food menu (mostly apps, salads and sandwiches), but we skipped eating. We visited right after work one day and the place was mostly dead. But I like how open the areas are and I like that there are still booths and tables around that would make for a good spot to enjoy some music.
While I wouldn't suggest this place as a destination for craft beer over other destinations in the city. I can definitely say that if you are looking for some music to watch, you will be extremely excited with the beer selection here.
The green line Ashland stop is about 2 blocks west. There is some street parking in the area.
Selection: 3.5 |
Atmosphere: 3.75 |
Service: 4.25 |