Beers, burgers, sports—and yellowfin tuna. This River West pub offers up your basic sports bar essentials—a TV around every corner, framed photos of sports figures and B-list actors covering the walls, domestic and imported beers galore (including PBR, Bass, and Newcastle), and even an American flag gracing one of the beams of Mahoney's high ceiling. The large space is replete with booths and tables arching around a small stage (catering to live DJs), as well as pool tables along the windows. Pop, metal and classic rock blares from the speakers, providing almost a small-town watering hole feel sure to draw in long-time locals and frat boys alike.
But Mahoney's still sits within the Chicago city limits, and the slightly cosmopolitan menu reflects that, with still-cheap offerings that go far beyond chicken wings and greasy pub grub (entrees range from $7-$9). Order a glass of wine with an appetizer you'd be hard-pressed to find at your average sports bar—steamed, butter-laden mussels ($11.95), or a Greek salad ($7). Move onto the entree special, the corned beef reuben, or for a meat-free option, try the Portobello sandwich.
After the dinner hour, there's an air of the undergraduate "just-turned-21" scene at Mahoney's, which could easily escalate into a raucous "the keg's out back" vibe by the wee morning hours, and then morph by Sunday afternoon to a laid-back Midwestern football-and-pitcher crowd.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: August Evans
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