Blue Line

Chicago Craft Crawl #3: Blue Line - O'Hare Branch

Chicago Craft Crawl #3: Blue Line - O'Hare Branch

The Hop Review is back with our third Chicago Craft Crawl! As you'll remember from our first and second crawls, we use only the trains and buses of the CTA to reach some of the city's best beer spots, all while exploring the neighbourhoods that make Chicago great. Check out the first two editions for our rules but it's all pretty simple. Don't take any cabs, drink some great beer, and have some fun checking out the city.

So load up that Ventra card and prepare yourself for an afternoon of great beer and sightseeing with The Hop Review's Chicago Craft Crawl. Next up in our series: CTA Blue Line - O'Hare Branch.

Brewer Chat: Brewpub-ing with Piece's Jonathan Cutler

Brewer Chat: Brewpub-ing with Piece's Jonathan Cutler

WICKER PARK, CHICAGO

If you're familiar with Chicago's Wicker Park, then you're probably aware that Piece Brewery & Pizzeria is a neighborhood institution. In fact, you could argue Piece is spreading it's influence plenty outside the North Side. It's built a bit of a reputation. Not just as one of the best pizza joints in the country (proof here), but as home to some of the highest-regarded brews in the nation (we're not kidding). They've got the fanfare, and hardware, to prove it. What you might not know is exactly how brewer, Jonathan Cutler, came to find his home at the brewpub over a decade ago. Nor how incredibly affable and humble this guy is. We sat down to share a few pints with Cutler and discuss the globetrotting that got him here.

Chicago Craft Crawl #2: Halsted Street

Chicago Craft Crawl #2: Halsted Street

There are very few streets in Chicago with Halsted's combination of history and diversity. Spanning 168 city blocks, the street daggers through over a dozen neighborhoods, passes near two Major League Baseball stadiums, offers stunning views of the downtown skyline, and is the location of countless historic landmarks.

We began our Sunday afternoon tour at one of the city's recently refreshed watering holes, Maria's Packaged Goods & Community Bar (31st & Morgan) in Bridgeport. If you're like us and hadn't made the trip to this south side establishment yet, the draw of the place might be a little difficult to explain. With a somewhat unassuming storefront exterior, it's an easy place to miss. Peek inside, however, and you'll start to see what all the fuss is about. A tiny front room is crammed from floor to ceiling with craft beer. Well-known local brews sit side by side with hard-to-find offerings from Chicago and beyond.