Bars, Microbreweries and Music Clubs on Route 66
First, many restaurants on Route 66 serve beer or other alcohol. So this Route 66 list of bars isn’t all-inclusive but is trying to direct you to clubs that offer live music or taverns that boast a lot of history or character (the latter includes the Luna Cafe in Mitchell, Illinois.; Elbow Inn in Devil’s Elbow, Missouri; DeCamp Station in Staunton, Illinois; and The Museum Club in Flagstaff, Arizona). I also wanted to include microbreweries because they, in general, are clean, safe, and serve terrific beer and/or food.
Second, not all these places on Route 66, but within a mile or so. I stretched that proximity so tourists could check out such notable historic places as Cain’s Ballroom in Tulsa.
A listing with an asterisk (*) is a bar known for live music. Of course, a few of these places without the asterisk may have live music, depending on the night of the week.
Third, I can’t vouch for all these places, so caveat emptor. If you have any suggestions, drop me a line at route66newssite(at)gmail(dot)com.
- Chicago: Buddy Guy’s Legends*
- Chicago: Skylark Lounge
- Chicago: Epiphany Center for the Arts*
- Chicago: Andy’s Jazz Club*
- Chicago: Lo-Rez Brewing Co.
- Chicago: Haymarket Pub & Brewery
- Chicago: Hopothesis Beer Co.
- Chicago: Lagunitas Tap Room
- Chicago: Goose Island Beer Co.
- Chicago: On Tour Brewing Co.
- Berwyn: FitzGerald’s Night Club*
- Plainfield: Werk Force Brewing Co.
- Darien: Miskatonic Brewing Co.
- Darien: Hop Butcher for the World
- Lyons: Ricky D’s Place
- Lyons: BuckleDown Brewing Co.
- Willowbrook: Black Horizon Brewing Co.
- Romeoville: Metal Monkey Brewing Co.
- Lamont: Pollyanna Brewing Co.
- Lockport: Nik & Ivy Brewing Co.
- Joliet: Chicago Street Pub
- Joliet: Elder Brewing Co.
- Joliet: MyGrain Brewing
- Wilmington: Rustic Inn
- Wilmington: Route 66 Old School Brewing
- Odell: Lobo’s Tap
- Lexington: Dat Bar at the End Row
- Normal: Destihl Brewing Co.
- Bloomington: Six Strings*
- Bloomington: Keg Grove Brewing Co.
- Bloomington: Lil Beaver Brewing Co.
- Bloomington: Daddio’s
- Bloomington: Fat Jack’s
- Lincoln: Limerick Brewing Co.
- Springfield: Dublin Pub
- Springfield: D’Arcy’s Pint
- Springfield: Buzz Bomb Brewing Co.
- Springfield: Anvil and Forge Brewery and Distillery
- Springfield: Engrained Brewing Co.
- Springfield: Obed and Isaac’s Brewery
- Staunton: DeCamp Station
- Auburn: Rocki’s
- Auburn: Slauterhouse Brewing Co.
- Hamel: Weezy’s
- Edwardsville: Recess Brewing
- Edwardsville: Stagger Inn Again*
- Mitchell: Luna Cafe
- St. Louis: Tigin Irish Pub
- St. Louis: Alpha Brewing Co.
- St. Louis: Flamingo Bowl
- St. Louis: 4 Hands Brewing Co.
- St. Louis: Earthbound Brewing
- St. Louis: Square One Brewery
- St. Louis: Urban Chestnut Brewing Co.
- St. Louis: The Famous Bar
- St. Louis: The Civil Life Brewing Co.
- St. Louis: Alpha Brewing Co.
- St. Louis: Schlafly Tap Room
- St. Louis: Trainwreck Saloon
- St. Louis: BB’s Jazz, Blues & Soups*
- St. Louis: Modern Brewery
- Maplewood: Side Project Brewing
- Valley Park: Mackenzie Brewing Co.
- Wildwood: Stovall’s Grove*
- Eureka: Melvin Brewing Co.
- Cuba: Frisco’s Grill and Pub
- Cuba: East Office Bar & Grill
- St. James: Johnnie’s Bar
- St. James: Public House Brewery
- Rolla: Public House Brewery
- Waynesville: Piney River Tap Room on Route 66
- Phillipsburg: Boat Town Brewing Co.
- Springfield: Big Whiskey’s
- Springfield: Mother’s Brewing Co.
- Springfield: Luttrell Auction and Music* (bluegrass on weekends)
- Springfield: Outland Ballroom*
- Springfield: Nathan P. Murphy’s*
- Springfield: Hold Fast Brewing
- Springfield: Ebbets Field
- Springfield: Springfield Brewing Co.
- Springfield: White River Brewing Co.
- Webb City: Longhorn Bar & Grill
- Webb City: Flag City Brewing Co.
- Joplin: Chaos Brewing Co.
- Joplin: Guitars Rock N Country Bar and Nightclub*
- Baxter Springs: Red Ball Bar & Grill*.
- Claremore: Cabin Boys Brewery-Claremore
- Catoosa: Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar and Grill*
- Tulsa: Heirloom Rustic Ales
- Tulsa: Renaissance Brewing Co.
- Tulsa: Cabin Boys Brewery
- Tulsa: Dead Armadillo Brewing Co.
- Tulsa: Pearl Beach Brewpub
- Tulsa: NEFF Brewing
- Tulsa: Nothing’s Left Brewing Co.
- Tulsa: Eerie Abbey Ales
- Tulsa: Cain’s Ballroom*
- Tulsa: McNellie’s
- Tulsa: The Hunt Club*
- Tulsa: Arnie’s Bar
- Tulsa: Mercury Lounge*
- Tulsa: Marshall Brewing Co.
- Stroud: The Q
- Edmond: UCO Jazz Lab*
- Edmond: Frenzy Brewing Co.
- Edmond: Battered Boar Brewing Co.
- Oklahoma City: Belle Isle Restaurant and Brewing
- Oklahoma City: Twisted Spike Brewing Co.
- Oklahoma City: Coop Ale Works
- Oklahoma City: Stonecloud Brewing Co.
- Oklahoma City: VZD Restaurant and Club
- Yukon: Grady’s 66 Pub*
- Canute: Friends Pub & Pizza
- Clinton: Long-Bell Brewing Co.
- McLean: Cactus Rose Taphouse
- Amarillo: Big Texan Brewery
- Amarillo: Golden Light Cantina*
- Amarillo: Six Car Pub and Brewery
- Amarillo: Pondaseta Brewing Co.
- Amarillo: Broken Spoke Lounge
- Tucumcari: The Lizard Lounge
- Moriarty: Sierra Blanca Brewing Co.
- Albuquerque: Turquoise Trail Brewing Co.
- Albuquerque: Bombs Away Beer Co.
- Albuquerque: Boese Brothers Brewing
- Albuquerque: Launchpad Night Club*
- Albuquerque: Boxing Bear Brewing Co.
- Albuquerque: Nexus Brewing
- Albuquerque: High and Dry Brewing
- Albuquerque: Effex Night Club
- Albuquerque: O’Niell’s Irish Pub
- Albuquerque: Bow and Arrow Brewing Co.
- Albuquerque: Marble Brewery
- Albuquerque: Sidetrack Brewing Co.
- Los Lunas: Tractor Brewing Co.
- Albuquerque and Santa Fe: Il Vicino
- Santa Fe: Marble Brewery Tap Room
- Santa Fe: Second Street Brewery
- Santa Fe: Santa Fe Brewing Co.
- Santa Fe: Leaf & Hive Brew Lab
- Santa Fe: La Casa Sena
- Santa Fe: La Fiesta Lounge at La Fonda
- Santa Fe: Low ‘n Slow Lowrider Bar
- Santa Fe: Evangelo’s Cocktail Lounge
- Santa Fe: Tumbleroot Brewery and Distillery
- Santa Fe: Rowley’s Farmhouse Ales
- BernaIillo: Kaktus Brewing Co.
- Grants: Elkins Brewing Co.
- Grants: Route 66 Junkyard Brewery
- Gallup: Sammy C’s Rockin’ Sports Pub & Grille
- Flagstaff: Flagstaff Brewing Co.
- Flagstaff: Beaver Street Brewery
- Flagstaff: Lumberyard Brewing Co.
- Flagstaff: Mother Road Brewing Co.
- Flagstaff: Historic Brewing Co.
- Flagstaff: Dark Sky Brewing Co.
- Flagstaff: Uptown Pubhouse
- Flagstaff: Monte Vista Hotel Cocktail Lounge
- Flagstaff: Charly’s Pub (in Hotel Weatherford)
- Flagstaff: Orpheum Theatre*
- Flagstaff: Grand Canyon Brewing
- Flagstaff: Wanderlust Brewing Co.
- Williams: Canyon Club Bar
- Williams: Grand Canyon Brewery
- Williams: Sultana
- Seligman: Black Cat Bar
- Kingman: Cellar Door Wine Bar
- Kingman: Sportsmans Club
- Kingman: Black Bridge Brewery
- Kingman: Rickety Cricket Brewing
- Oatman: Judy’s
- Oatman: Oatman Hotel
- Topock: Topock 66
- Victorville: Rustic Tavern
- Apple Valley: Oggi’s Pizza and Brewing Co.
- Hesperia: Oak Hills Brewing Co.
- San Bernardino: Brandin’ Iron Saloon*
- Rancho Cucamonga: Hamilton Family Brewery
- Rancho Cucamonga: No Clue Craft Brewery
- Rancho Cucamonga: Kings Brewing Co.
- La Verne: La Verne Brewing Co.
- Upland: Last Name Brewing Co.
- Upland: Rescue Brewing Co.
- Upland: Rok House Brewing Co.
- Claremont: Claremont Craft Ales
- Asuza: Congregation Ale House
- Monrovia: Pacific Plate Brewing Co.
- Monrovia: Over Town Brewing Co.
- Monrovia: Wingwalker Brewing Co.
- Monrovia: Hop Secret Brewing Co.
- Arcadia: Mt. Lowe Brewing Co.
- Pomona: Old Stump Brewing Co.
- Duarte: Route 66 Roadhouse & Tavern
- Pasadena: T. Boyle’s Tavern
- Pasadena: Craftsman Brewing Co.
- Pasadena: Eden Garden Bar & Grill
- Pasadena: Cerveceria del Pueblo
- Los Angeles: La Cita Bar
- Los Angeles: Sage Vegan Bistro and Brewery
- Los Angeles: Club Los Globos*
- Los Angeles: Seven Bar Lounge
- Los Angeles: The Echoplex*
- Los Angeles: Silverlake Lounge*
- Los Angeles: Eagle Rock Brewery
- Los Angeles: Bonaventure Brewing Co.
- Los Angeles: The Hermosillo
- Los Angeles: Angel City Brewery
- Los Angeles: Clifton’s Republic
- Los Angeles: Einstok Beer Co.
- West Hollywood: The Surly Goat
- West Hollywood: The Troubadour*
- Hollywood: The Viper Room*
- Santa Monica: Harvelle’s*
- Santa Monica: Santa Monica Brew Works
- Santa Monica: Rusty’s (on the Pier)
4 thoughts on “Bars”
Nice, very nice!
Lovely, just what i need for my upcoming trip, thanks
It seems like you’re going pretty far afield here, at least based on what you’ve listed for Chicago. And I say this as a native Chicagoan. One would think you’d like to stay closer to the actual path of the route.
Only the Snuggery and the Skylark are on old Route 66, and the Snuggery isn’t even a real tavern: it’s an economy-sized commuter bar on one of the lower levels of Union Station where you go to get a quick snort before you catch the train home. And it certainly wasn’t there when the station opened; in fact, I doubt it’s been there more than a decade, if that. The station itself is of greater significance, having been designed by Daniel Burnham (he died before it was finished; his successor firm, Graham, Anderson, Probst & White, supervised its completion).
The Skylark Lounge is a neighborhood dive in a rough part of town (Lawndale is one of the absolute poorest areas of Chicago), but at least it’s on Route 66 proper. However, the building itself looks to be at least 90 to 100 years old — so it was probably there at the dawn of Route 66. It has some nice leaded-glass windows with colored inserts on the upper floors facing Ogden.
The Haymarket Pub is at least half a mile north of Adams Street, which is where Route 66 going west now runs; it’s a yuppie bar and brewery and a fairly new entity in a gentrified area. The building it’s in is at least a century old, so it was around when Route 66 opened.
Buddy Guy’s is a great blues lounge and always packed — but it’s 5 blocks south of Jackson Blvd, which is the original (1926) path of Route 66. Like the Haymarket, it’s a stretch for inclusion; I wouldn’t have put it on the list, but I can highly recommend it for music. Still, if you’re going that far afield, I can’t see why you excluded the Jazz Showcase at 806 S. Plymouth Ct., which is the best jazz club in town and just as far south off the route as is Buddy Guy’s.
Andy’s Jazz Club is another wonderful music venue — love the place. But for heaven’s sake, it’s all the way across the Chicago River and and mile and a half north of the route!!! Goose Island Brewery is more than two miles north of it, and Fitzgerald’s, another great music club that happens to be in Berwyn, is more than THREE miles off the route! Seriously: how are these places related to Route 66?? Answer: they’re not. They’re just great places to visit if you happen to be in metropolitan Chicago. That’s all.
Now, if you want to stick closer to the actual path of the route in Chicago, that entire stretch of Jackson and Adams from the South Branch of the Chicago River (about 350 west, at that point) through West Loop to Ashland Avenue (1600 west) is either already redeveloped or gentrifying, and the section between the river and Racine Avenue (1200 west) has a lot of new restaurants and bars. No good music venues, but you can’t have everything … but if you want reliable reviews of local eateries, I suggest that after you glance at Yelp or Zagat, you go to the website for Check, Please! — it’s a restaurant review show on our local public TV station, WTTW:
For bars and music venues, you can always look to the weekly Chicago Reader (https://www.chicagoreader.com/) or the weekly magazine Time Out Chicago (https://www.timeoutchicago.com/).
Great list of clubs along the way! Kudos!
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