Mar 16, 2022 - Business

Iconic restaurants, bars and businesses lost during the pandemic

Schlitz sign

The now-permanently closed Southport Lanes & Billiards on North Southport Avenue. Photo: Erin Hooley/Chicago Tribune via Getty Images

After two years of the pandemic, there have been almost 15,000 COVID-19 deaths in Cook County alone, as well as the loss of more than 2,000 local restaurants, bars, and small businesses that make up the fabric of Chicago.

Here are five iconic places that are no longer with us:

🎧 Danny's Tavern: This Bucktown stalwart was the go-to for the artistic community as well as the home to some of the city's best DJs. It was a unique spot nestled between old houses on Dickens.

🇩🇪 Huettenbar: The German-inspired bar served traditional German beers like Hefeweizen. The open windows gave a welcoming atmosphere to weary travelers in Lincoln Square.

🎳 Southport Lanes: Opened in 1922, the Lakeview bowling alley still manually set its pins. It was a go-to for food, drinks, and group outings.

🏒 WestEnd: Only 14 years old, this West Loop sports bar was still the default place to celebrate the Blackhawks Stanley Cup runs. It was also where local news ran to capture the celebrations.

🥩 Ronny's Steakhouse: The classic cafeteria served cheap steak. It was a must for late-night workers in the Loop, including Monica.

Honorable mentions: BlackBird, Bandera, Ditka's, West Egg Café, The Scout Waterhouse & Kitchen, Francesca's on Taylor (and Bryn Mawr), Davanti Enoteca, I|O Godfrey, Sir & Madame, Arclight Cinemas (Lincoln Park), and Café Spiaggia.

📫 What do you miss? Email [email protected] with your favorites that closed during the pandemic and we'll include responses in a future list.

Go deeper: The Tribune has put together a comprehensive list of shuttered favorites.


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