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View Map56 W. Illinois St., Chicago
Tel: (312) 943-7600
Fax: (312) 644-7654
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Editorial Review of Underground

I was a little skeptical of a bar claiming to be chill and low-key in a series of YouTube commercials directed by David Schwimmer, especially one located blocks away from the Michigan Avenue tourist trap. I was right. The scene at Underground is typical Rockit Ranch; it's as if the company hand-picked a few employees from its other clubs, including Rockit, and dropped them off here (picture typical Lincoln Park twenty- and thirty-somethings).

Located literally underground—patrons have to walk down two flights of stairs to reach the entrance—the place has a bomb shelter vibe: Concrete and metal are the main elements here, excluding the wall made of wood panels, and the lights have a green-tinge to them. Low gray and khaki leather couches are spread throughout the space and provide the perfect camouflage for the bar staff sporting army-inspired mini-dresses and fatigues. Flat screens playing snowy black and white images intimate hijacked video feed, and even the napkins exhibit Underground's bomb shelter logo. Lost fanatics would have a field day here (think Dharma Initiative hatch).

Although the crowd and location don't exactly fit the low-key bill, the staff is exceptionally friendly and drinks are priced more along the lines of a neighborhood spot instead of a downtown club. Continuing with the underground feel, the folks at Rockit Ranch are planning on keeping events and DJ bookings a secret. If they plan on bringing in hipster underground acts like A-Trak and Hollertronix, both known to turn parties out, we hope the suit-wearing set will stay at home.

Centerstage Reviewer: Maya Henderson

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9 p.m.-4 a. m. Thursday-Friday; 9 p.m.-5 a.m. Saturday

Directions to Underground

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Holiday Cocktails, 12/12/08
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Cocktail Calorie Crunch, 9/10/08
Go ahead, drink that fruity drink, it may be better for you than you think.

DJ Zebo, 5/28/08
You won't have to pay top dollar to see one of the city's top DJs.

Benjamin Newby, 12/11/07
The Underground's British bartender brings innovative cocktails and cutting-edge DJs to Underground.


chicago, metromix