A classic 80s aesthetic immediately envelops folks as they walk through the door of Elite Cafe & Billiards. Or rather, the 80's version of the 50s. A primary-colored art-deco bar, complete with rows of red bar-stools, chrome, and neon pink stands as the centerpiece of the cafe. The main attraction lies just past the bar: rows of pool tables lit by hanging red lamps. The 17 pool tables?all nine feet long?come surrounded by plenty of room to maneuver, giving players enough space to pull off trick shots and Charleston celebration dances. Back at the bar, pool players can sit and enjoy beer, soda, chips, and beer nuts.
“Barbecue meets beer garden” may sum up Sheffield’s, but it hardly does the bar—heralded by [Esquire] (http://www.esquire.com/bestbars/bb-sheffields) as one of the best in America—any justice. Standing at the corner of Sheffield and School and housed in the bottom floor of a three-story brownstone, Sheffield’s pulls all the stops when it comes to its two specialties. Barbecue sauce made from scratch smothers tender beef brisket, homemade sausage, and pork that chefs smoke for 14 hours and pull to order. Hand-cut fries and fresh baked cornbread complement the sandwiches and platters, as does any one of the bar’s microbrews, such as Allgash Blonde or Sawtooth English Ale. In the summer, bar-goers can enjoy their brew and food out back in the beer garden, which the Goodlife Report named as one of “America’s Best Beer Gardens”. As cold winds roll into town, patrons can escape to the cozy indoors, surrounded by brick walls and plenty of sports-casting TVs.
Rose and Stanley Sacharski never meant to open a tiki bar. Their first watering hole, The Lucky Start on Fullerton and Lockwood, was a simple neighborhood tavern until some bamboo wall coverings inspired endless questions from customers: were they a tiki bar? By 1963, the Sacharskis decided their answer was yes, and let their young son pick a new name?Hala Kahiki?from a copy of Dennis the Menace Goes to Hawaii.
Now located inside a former greenhouse in River Grove, Hala Kahiki pours more than 100 tropical-themed cocktails, mingling rum with daiquiris and gin with tropical fruits. Hanging shells sway above the bamboo-lined bar, and rattan lampshades and cane chairs evoke the pleasures of an endless Hawaiian summer. Tables and chairs dot a spacious outdoor garden, and an on-site gift shop stocks Hawaiian shirts, leis, wood-hewn lamps, and several former cast members of Gilligan's Island.
Named for the legislation that overturned Prohibition, 21st Amendment Restaurant/Speakeasy celebrates craft spirits with a menu that includes craft beers such as Speakeasy Prohibition Ale. The food is as high-quality as the drink, with menu options that range from prime steak burgers topped with corned beef to two-pound Maine lobsters. Even the extras are thoughtful?the complimentary bread is baked fresh daily, and there's a rotating selection of signature desserts.