photo: courtesy of Bridget Cicenia
Claiming to have the oldest continuous beer license on the North Side, Durkin's has been getting people drunk for quite some time. Although it's popular with those who live in the area, don't expect to find a laid-back neighborhood bar here. As at its sister bars Duffy's, Redmond's, McGee's and Wrightwood Tap (they are all owned by the Bar 1 group), many patrons leave Durkin's on a Saturday night barely remembering they were there in the first place.
This is especially true on Saturdays in the fall, when the bar fills to the brim with Purdue fans cheering on their alma mater on the dozens of TVs scattered around the huge, three-room facility. During games, the back room is reserved for the Purdue Club of Chicago, and the fight song and drink specials keep the Boilermakers happy no matter how their team is doing. Durkin's is also known for its daily specials, like $3 you-call-its on Sundays and Euchre leagues with $3 beers and Jameson cocktails on Tuesdays. On holidays including Valentine's Day, Halloween and Thanksgiving, stop at Durkin's for an all-you-can-drink trolley tour that hits all of the Bar 1 bars.
As far as grub, Durkin’s serves standard pub food like wings, mozzarella sticks and chicken fingers. The most unique (and no doubt most calorie-laden) items on the menu are The Cow, The Pig and The Gobbler—half a pound of beef, ham or turkey served on Texas toast and covered in fries and cheese.
Centerstage Reviewer: Erica Walkup