From Christmas-themed pop-ups to lighting displays, there are a ton of places that seasonally deck their halls. Whether you’re visiting Chicago for the weekend or want to find a festive place to find drinks, these are the best holiday bars in Chicago that we guarantee will make it to your camera roll.
1. Butch Mcguire’s
For over 50 years, Butch McGuire’s has been lighting up Chicagoan’s lives. The iconic spot is rated as one of the best holiday bars in Chicago. Every space of the bar is decorated with Christmas lights, disco balls, flashy ornaments, and even a festive holiday train that moves through the bar. If you’re looking for a place that doesn’t hold back on its decorations, this is it.
2. The Lodge Tavern
Division Street’s favorite bar is getting a holiday makeover complete with a full month of holiday events! The Lodge Tavern—known for its cozy winter cabin feel—is transforming into a holiday wonderland with twinkling lights, wreaths, garlands, and more.
From the holiday menu, guests can choose from festive riffs on classic cocktails like Mule-Tide Greetings, Ebenezer’s Old Fashioned, Mrs. Clausmo, holiday beers on tap, and more. And for those looking to warm their bellies, The Lodge Tavern will offer a hot cocktail menu featuring the Ho Ho Hot Toddy, Irish You A Merry Christmas, St. Nicks Cider, and more.
3. Moe’s Cantina
The legendary Grinch takes center stage at Moe’s Wrigleyville as the venue gets a dose of Whoville with a Grinch Stole Christmas theme. The Grinch welcomes guests in, while inside, bright Christmas balls and bold holiday patterns, Admission to all popups is free.
Christmas trees and colorful lights pair with specialty menu items like birria tacos as well as buñelos—a crispy fried dessert coated with cinnamon sugar. Moes also features a roster of fun, festive specialty drinks, including Christmas Tree Patron Towers, spiked Mexican hot chocolate, and the bright and icy Jack Frost, with Patron Blanco, Blue Curacao, lime, and agave.
4. The Redhead Piano Bar
Sing along to your favorite carols at Redhead Piano Bar. Tucked away on bustling Ontario Street, The Redhead Piano Bar invites guests to sing along to all the holiday classics with nightly live piano music and performances from 7 p.m. to 4 a.m.
The cozy late-night spot decked out with garland, lights, and mistletoe will feature a special limited-time holiday cocktail menu including Candy Cane with Absolut Vanilla Vodka, Bailey’s, and Peppermint Schnapps, Jingle Juice with Woodford Reserve Bourbon, Cranberry Juice, and Ginger Ale, Kris Kringle Kir Royale with Cranberry Juice, Chambord, and Korbel, and more.
5. The Original Mother’s
The Original Mother is getting into the holiday spirit with weekly dueling piano theme parties every Saturday in December from 9 pm to 12 am! Guests are invited to dress up, bring their favorite song requests, and revel in live holiday sing-along piano shows consisting of two grand pianos and charismatic entertainers behind the keys with the addition of a rock band drummer.
6. Old Crow Smokehouse
Santa Claus is coming to town as the Wrigleyville barbecue spot morphs into Santa’s Workshop for the season. Giant Christmas balls, white lights, and Christmas trees set the holiday scene, while the holiday menu features comfort food favorites like French Onion Soup, Old Crow Pot Pie, and Hot Honey Chicken Biscuit Sliders.
Specialty cocktail options include the bright and icy Jack Frost, with Patron Blanco, Blue Curacao, lime, and agave; the nostalgic Dirty Chocolate Milk, with eggnog, Amaretto, and Crème de Cacao in a Mason jar; the Old Crow version of Harry Potter’s Butterbeer, with vanilla vodka, caramel syrup, and cream soda; and the Polar Espresso, with whiskey and cold brew coffee in a martini glass.