The Map Room

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The Map RoomThe Map Room
347 Ratings
The Map RoomThe Map Room

Type: Bar

1949 N Hoyne Ave
Chicago, Illinois, 60647-4560
United States

(773) 252-7636 | map

Monday - Friday: 6:30 am - 2:00 am
Saturday: 7:30 am - 3:00 am
Sunday: 11:00 am - 2:00 am
No alcohol served before 11:00am.
Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Added by jackndan

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Ratings: 347 |  Reviews: 222
Photo of deliriumfest
2.4/5  rDev -46.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2 | service: 1 | selection: 4

I went here on a Friday night so obviously a bad choice from the start. Walked in and ordered a Celebrator at the bar. After that, I asked the bar tender for a mixed drink for my gf who doesn't love beer. The bartender replied "we don't serve fucking mixed drinks here; this is a beer bar." Considering there is a full bar next to all of the beer I figured this was a valid request. After waiting 10 more minutes at the bar with my gf who would apparently never get a drink, we just left. Overall, terrible experience so I probably won't go back unless they have something amazing on tap that I'll never find anywhere else.

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Photo of onefmatt
2.84/5  rDev -36.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 2.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4

This is not a bar I enjoy because while they do have a very good selection of beers, other bars in the city are giving this place a run for its money. And the beer is the only redeeming quality to it in my opinion.

I am quite knowledgeable about beers (travel to craft brew fests, etc) but for whatever reason most of the bartenders will treat me as if I just farted in their dinner. It seems they assume that every patron that walks in has the IQ of a rock and they deserve to be treated as such. Almost a disdain to the point that I want to ask them, "Do you just absolutely hate your job?"

The atmosphere is decent with a lot of old maps and such on the walls and shelves, but often it is so loud in there that you struggle to speak to the person next to you.

If you want good beer without the attitude, head over to Small Bar (any location), Local Option, Sheffield's, Quenchers, Hopleaf or Kuma's. My experience at these locations has been far more pleasant.

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Photo of stbroome
3.19/5  rDev -28.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 1 | selection: 4.5

First off, let me say that I'm not some disgruntled one-time customer who is out for blood via a negative review. I travel to Chicago semi-regularly and have frequented the Map Room on several ocassions. This past weekend will be my last. 3 months ago some friends and I stopped into the Map Room in the afternoon for some quality beer and the selection at the Map Room is hard to beat. The bartender (short with black glasses) was one of the rudest, pretentious jerks I've ever ordered a beer from. I mean this guy was one of those pompus elitists who takes themselves far too seriously, giving the beek geekdom a bad name.

So fastfoward to this weekend. Friends and I in town and wanting good craft beer, so we're back at The Map Room and encounter a new barkeep. Definately rude and this was early in the night, like 8PM, so he wasn't influenced by a hard night of dealing with unruley drunks. I'm eating a stick pretzel from the bar and hit a girlfriend with it in obvious good clean fun. He takes the pretzels away, sternly telling me "they're for adults." Being 37 years old, I thought I could handle stick pretzels. I also thought that most bartenders understand that drinkers also want to have a little fun and not be treated like they are drinking in the USSR circa 1982.

So I tell the guy I'm unhappy with the service, just like my last time there, and of course am thrown out of the bar. But the best part about the evening was now I have one less choice in deciding where to drink in Chicago.

The Map Room, excellent beer selection with seriously rude staff. If you don't appreciate customer service, it's a good place.

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Photo of Neffbeer
3.29/5  rDev -26.2%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4

Stopped in last night for a few drinks with a friend of mine from the area. It was my first time there and I found their draft list to be solid but not mind blowing. I got a Dreadnaught, a Lagunitas IPA for the wife and a Prima Pils for my friend. After trying all the beers we discovered the Lagunitas IPA to be WAY off. It was so stale there was no hop aroma or flavor. I took it to the bartender and asked if he poured the wrong beer or if the keg was off. He gladly poured me another with the same result and staunchly told me that was the right beer. Strange for a bar of this caliber to not recognize the problem. Oh well. I will give it another try next time I am in town.

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Photo of Niniimaa
3.3/5  rDev -26%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5

Visited the Map Room after Black hawks home opener on Saturday. Wise "1 in - 1 out" policy was in effect due to how crammed full it was of people. With the number of people and the very loud music playing, the bartenders could hardly hear my beer orders. Cigarette smoke was heavy in the air.

Good draft selection up on the chalk boards; full board of Belgians (if you like belgians). I read through the taps for more selections. I couldn't seem to ID the hophead selections, so I started with the E. Fitzgerald and ended with Old Rasputin.

I didn't expect their full wet bar; and cannot remember seeing anyone there with mixed drinks in hand. Food would be nice; my friend walked across the street to Cleo's for some (free) food and brought some corndogs (sans sticks) back in his pockets.

Friendly customers as I'd expect from any highly rated BeerAdvocate bar. A barfly let me know I was drinking at the #5 rated beer bar by BA. I need to try a few more but this was the best I visited in Chicago (my friends took my to chain bars otherwise). I would like to try HopHaus or Clark's just to contrast on future visits.

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Photo of EliteDigger
3.31/5  rDev -25.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 1.5 | selection: 4

Stopped here with a friend on my way down to DLD '08. Pretty easy to find although we had to search for parking a bit.
Walked in and noticed the place was a bit on the dirty/grimy side...noticable but not horrible. Made up for that with a little bit of character. Large sections of windows were open to the street allowing for some fresh air and people watching. A large map/mural painted on the ceiling with some random decorative beer nostalgia, flag/banners draped off to the side across from the bar. Selection was decent with a large list scrawled on the chalkboard for taps. It was early on a Friday evening (5:30ish) and they were mildly busy. Two bartenders were bouncing around, but it took at least 10 minutes to take my order. Ordered something for my friend (don't remember) and a Surly Bender off the list for myself and was told they were out of the Bender. I looked over the board and ordered a Moylans IPA since I haven't had it. She wandered off while I talked to my friend and came back with both beers about 5 minutes later. At this point she told me that they were out of the Moylans so she poured me an Anderson Valley Hop Ottin IPA instead. WTF!?!?! If I wanted that, I would have ordered it! I've had the Hop Ottin before and wanted to try something I had never had before. If she had told me they were out of the Moylans, I probably would have ordered something completely different. Since when do you decide what your customer will like and pour it without asking? And if you're gonna substitute something like that, knock some off the price or something. I probably should have just refused it altogether, but at this point after the long drive, I just wanted to sit down with a beer and relax. I didn't feel like standing there for another 10 minutes waiting to find something else they were out of....
Drank our beers, sat and people watched for a bit and left. My friend thought the place was alright, I left unimpressed...

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Photo of Shakujin
3.38/5  rDev -24.2%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Atmosphere: Poorly lit, dive looking joint. Sort of like they took a craft beer selection and plastered it onto an old neighborhood bar.

Quality: Had some real ale which was slightly off but to be fair it was not actually on the menu that I could see. Had two other beers and aside from being served ice cold there were no quality issues.

Service: Fine, bartenders certainly knew what they were talking about and made good recommendations, but didnt seem to pumped to be taking my money.

Selection: Big selection, tended to be more in the hoppy American craft vein, or the belgian variety. But there was plenty of beers from other places.

Food: No food there, apparently you can bring your own

Value: Reasonable

Overall: If I just had to drink a specific beer I would considering going to the map room again. On the other hand if I was looking for a place to drink, bring friends or meet people, Id go somewhere else.

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Photo of brendanbeer
3.41/5  rDev -23.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

a. dark, small, not great lighting set up. some tvs. weird vibe, but relaxed. mostly beer enthusiasts hangin.

q. average.

s. average dudes serving beer. it was crowded when i went, but they did a good job of keeping things going while still being good servers.

s. sick selection. lots of taps, lots of good bottles. the menu is huge.

f. didnt try, though i would have liked to after a couple beers.

seemed run of the mill price wise, you pay up for nicer beers... standard prices that ive seen in other bars for similarly nice brews.

overall cool place if ur looking for some hard to find beers, but not much offered otherwise.

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Photo of TmoNyc
3.43/5  rDev -23.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5

Nice size bar that was crowded but still comfortable. Very cool vibe going on. Beer selection was massive & they seem to have the glassware to match. That's about all the positive I have to say. Now the rest.

First off, and my biggest complaint is that there's no prices listed anywhere. I don't mind that a place is cash only, but I would like to have a clue as to how much money I'm going to need for beers & tips in an evening in advance (especially when large format bottles are concerned). There's a big reason for this complaint.

The service was unfriendly at best. The gentlemen behind the bar seemed like they wanted to be anywhere else but behind a bar serving drinks. They were also obviously playing favorites to the regulars who were put to the head of the line no matter who was waiting for a beer first. So how in the world am I supposed to know that I'm paying what everyone else is paying for the same beer or are the aforementioned unfriendly bartenders making up prices as they go?

I stayed for two beers before getting into a cab and going elsewhere in my beer sightseeing tour of Chicago. For a place so highly recommended/rated, it was a major disappointment.

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Photo of cratez
3.49/5  rDev -21.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 1 | selection: 5

Came here with my girlfriend during a recent trip to Chicago.

VIBE: crowded hard rock/metal dive bar. Surly bouncers check for I.D. at the door. Clientele seems to be a mix of insecure, stuck-up regulars and students getting pie-faced. Not my type of place.

SERVICE: laughably abysmal bartenders. They wouldn’t allow us to run a tab, so we had to pay for each set of drinks, which ends up costing more since you have to tip every time in order to get served. Also, The Map Room calls itself a "traveller’s tavern," but the laundry list of rules contradicts that theme. No debit or credit, order at the bar (no table service), no food available, and no wine or liquor list, even though they offer both. Servers were hostile and made me feel rushed while ordering. The last straw was when I asked the barkeep what type of wine he was giving me (after I requested their best "white" for the lady) and he simply turned the bottle so the label was facing me. I withheld my tip and we left after finishing our drinks. Very pathetic service.

SELECTION: obviously the big (perhaps only?) draw here. Gargantuan draught and bottle lineups with many hard-to-find beers. I went with a 3Floyds Dreadnaught IPA and Rogue Morimoto Imperial Pilsner on tap, and a can of Half Acre Daisy Cutter. Other draughts included Firestone Walker Parabola, Boulevard Tank 7 Farmhouse Ale, and Stiegl Paracelsus Zwickl. In terms of bottles, De Ranke XX Bitter, The Bruery Coton, and Victory Headwaters Pale caught my eye. However, my girl did not enjoy her mixed drinks and she thought the wine was just okay.

OVERALL: this bar boasts one of the best craft beer menus in the city and that is why it has such a high rating. But for me the shoddy service, bizarre set-up, and annoying drunken patrons overshadow the great selection. Although I quaffed three excellent beers, I likely won’t return. A disappointing experience.

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Photo of chippo33
3.5/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of thewimperoo
3.5/5  rDev -21.5%

Photo of morebeergood
3.51/5  rDev -21.3%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

This was the third and final stop on our Sunday 8/26/07 Chicago pubcrawl. This bar is quite a cab ride if you are staying downtown, seemed to be located way out in a suburb. Walked in after 10:00 PM to the blasting music of some hardcore band (mostly heavy guitar and screaming). So as we tired to get comfortable, all we could hear was this wailing rock and smell the dozens of people smoking cigarettes. The place had a good look to it, with globes/maps and beers stuff everywhere, but it was hard to enjoy. The selection of beers was quite extensive though. Over 25 on tap and at least 300 bottles. I had the Great Lakes Pils and a Belgian saison called D'Erepe Mere. I liked the Belgian more. My wife had the Arcadian Whitsun and the Rader Blonde. The Rader was tasty. The music did settle down as the night went on. The service there is just enough to border on "sufficient" and not exactly "lazy". I guess I read a lot on BA about this bar, and was expecting more. This place seemed more like a local hangout/rock bar with just a great selection of beer thrown in. Probably would have been different if I was with a bunch of guys, but I was with my wife (we both love beer) and it just wasn't our scene.

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Photo of badbeer
3.53/5  rDev -20.9%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Entered the establishment and was immediately asked for ID; not too big a deal considering the risk to them if I was a minor. Nice bit of schwag all over, chairs were not extremely comfortable, but I was here for the beer. Atmosphere would still be higher if there wasn't so much smoking going on. Smokers should be allowed to smoke, but bars that make them do it outside are rewarded accordingly with my points. Service is brought down because of an old man, who apparently works there, was quite rude. The rest of the staff did their jobs just fine, but this guy went out of his way to be rude. Selection was still good, and the quality was very good as well. Prices were in line with what I'd expect to pay. Next time I assume it will be much better, might have been a bad day.

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Photo of BrewSomerville
3.58/5  rDev -19.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

No kitchen, so if you're hungry make a stop first.

It's a kindof small narrow neighborhood bar with a great selection of Beers from all over. Mostly in bottles and some on draught.

Service is fast and talkative.

Atmosphere was very blue collar. Kind of dark inside. The restrooms could be cleaner. Because of the small size of this place and the fact that they allow people to smoke cancer sticks makes this place very stinky, which detracts from your enjoyment of the Beers.

If they didn't have a good selection of good Beers I would avoid this place completely.

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Photo of kbnooshay
3.59/5  rDev -19.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 4.5

Appears to be my perfect beer bar. Wall adorned in a load of bottles not available to me in the east, lots bartenders with different moustaches/facial hair, and a trendy clientele. This place looked cool. Decorated with maps and filled with national geographics. Downside, I asked to by a tee shirt and the bartender seemed annoyed. My brother had his foot up on his wifes barstool rung and was criticized by a bartender. I thought this was uneccessary. Cool place, awesome selection, but kinda wished we were treated better.

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Photo of Boppar
3.6/5  rDev -19.3%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 5

Atmosphere is sort of a faux-dive hipster joint. One large(ish) room with, well, lots of maps and flags everywhere.

The list of beers they have available is truly staggering. Well done, The Map Room, well done.

Service is snippy and not all that great. Apparently water on the floor is the end of the world now (funny thing about how it's snowing outside). It doesn't seem like a whole lot to ask to be able to go out without receiving any water-related sass.

The beers they offer are a bit pricey, but then again, they do have some very rare brews available. Not the kind of place I would spend all night, but I would definitely start the night off here.

If I lived in Chicago, I would be there four nights a week to get Rodenbach Grand Cru on tap.

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Photo of koolchas
3.71/5  rDev -16.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 3.5

the map room was the second beer bar my wife and i visit on a recent trip to chicago last week. staying downtown, we took the "L" over to bucktown/wicker park. the neighborhood is in transition with some boutique shops and renovated homes. it was a nice stroll to the map room.

the map room was an interesting place. we arrived shy of noon as for some reason i thought they had food but, they did not. since it was early; of course, the place was not busy. a few people were on their laptops drinking coffee. a couple of people were at the bar having brews. so, this place is some what beer meets coffee shop or at least that was the vibe during this time. it reminded of the last call article of this months ba mag; "will beer geeks and java freaks ever come together? probably not" well, here they were together but, it was just funny as the more social folks were the beer drinkers talking to the bartenders while those on their laptops were to themselves. but, anyway, i found it kinda cool that a beer bar had wifi. i would love to have this near my home where i can leave, have a good brew, and work at the same time!

the beer selection here was decent. quite a bit of good belgians but, everything i can get here in california. i had a good st. bernardus abt 12 and the wife had rader blonde. the bartenders were cool too and very attentive.

by other reviews, i am sure this place is packed and jumpin' at night and during the weekends. it was very low key during the afternoon which we actually liked mainly because we are visiting and we are not used to very smoked filled rooms anymore.

overall, this is a very nice neighborhood bar but, if visiting chicago again, i doubt i'd go out my way to visit. i found hopleaf and clark st. overall to be better only because of the offerings here at the map room i can get at home and the regional brews are available at the other places as well.

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Photo of mymrnngjckt
3.73/5  rDev -16.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Stopped here for the first time during a recent trip to Chicago. Greeted with a long bar on the right and many two top tables on the left. The first section of tables were exposed to open windows/walls which was nice on this warm evening. No one waited on us while sitting at the table so we headed to the bar. Nice draft selection featuring a mix of belgian styles and american craft. Bottle selction was impressive. Service was basically non-existant during my visit. All the beer was poured in its proper glassware and everything I had tasted fresh. Nice mellow local crowd. I would stop back next time I was in town.

 620 characters

Photo of genog
3.73/5  rDev -16.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4

Got to go to Maproom, and Hop Leaf last weekend when we were in town for Dark Lord Day.

When we rolled into town our first stop was Map Room. We got a little lost on the way in but eventually found the room. Got in at maybe 6:00 and it was a little crowded for the after work rush. Saw that bender was on the menu but when we ordered it, the girl told us it was all gone (damn). So first up we got the Alpha King, and I had to put my credit card down with a $25 minimum. Didn't really think it would be a big problem to rack up a big tab. Next up we tried the Goose Island Matilda. Enjoyable beer. Next up was St. Bernardus 12 on tap.

We were lucky to find a table near the back and got to sit down, other than that there really is not a great deal of room. Its a long, skinny old wood floored small spot. It was too bad that they do not serve food otherwise we might have stayed a lot longer. Instead we drank our three beers and made ojut way to Hop Leaf.

Decent beer selection in a somewhat hole in the wall.

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Photo of nocheinsbitte
3.74/5  rDev -16.1%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5

I was there yesterday to have a few biers and watch the NCAA tourney action.
A: It was busy when we arrived (around 3pm) with many people enjoying the widest selection of biers around. The place is a little run down looking-it isn't trying to be a high-end place or appeal to anyone except the bier lover. Wide range of ages in there 20's-60's.
Quality: Pretty good overall. We did order a Czechvar and it was the skunkiest thing ever...the barkeep did change it for us, which was nice. They had Ayinger Celebrator as the bier of the month and it was good stuff.
Service: Average at best. We couldn't understand why they only had two bartenders on a busy afternoon?! It took awhile to get a bier, there is no wait staff, so you need to go to the bar to get your biers.
Selection: A great selection, almost too much. I think that is why we got a very skunky Czechvar. It is very Belgian and American Craft heavy, the German choices were few but decent.
Food: no kitchen, but some food on the side from outside places.
Overall, I thought the Map Room was overrated. Many places in Chicago offer a similar selection and the service was a turn-off. I don't need to be catered to, I just want to get a bier and not have to wait 10 min. for it. I will probably go back sometime, but won't go out of my way.

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Photo of JIMTRK16
3.75/5  rDev -15.9%

Photo of rtepiak
3.76/5  rDev -15.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5

this bar is located in the center of the new gentrified chicago. the beer seems to have been there since before then. this as a result make all the cleintal... whats the word... yuppies. wouldn't recommend going there on a weekend. services wise the bar staff seemed a bit surly which is good but they also went automatically with the idea that "you are an ignorant drunk and don't know shit about beer, and i do". not a very good customer/tender environment. been there and each time they seems to be really bad at it. this is for the strictly business beer drinker. don't really take anyone else with open arms. selection is good, because they make the effort to have really good things on tap when avaible. bottle selection isn't bad. overall they had some beers and didn't have others. but living in the city of chicago you grow to learn that most bars with a decent beer selection will have something really hard to find.

great for insider chicago beer culture... and impressing hot chicks.

no thank you HIGHPA

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Photo of wapcap
3.83/5  rDev -14.1%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.75

This is a good craft brew place to visit. Seemed to be set up like a coffee shop, but with craft beer. Meaning, ample space to set up your labtop and get some work done, while enjoying local brews. The service was fine, but slow, but that was mostly due to another patron and a long winded story. Selection was fine, and they had several local options. But the selection didn't blow me away. The place came highly recommended, and while not quite living up to hype, I'd still recommend checking out.

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Photo of fermentedbarley
3.84/5  rDev -13.9%
vibe: 2.5 | quality: 3.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5

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The Map Room in Chicago, IL
Place rating: 4.46 out of 5 with 347 ratings