CHICAGO, Illinois, USA – Ogilvie Transportation Center (OTC)
The Chicago News Room
Located on the 2nd floor
Okay, okay – this isn’t an airport. But, it is a transportation center, so I thought it could kind of count. Besides, it’s one of my favorite bars. Welcome to the Chicago News Room inside the Ogilvie Transportation Center, otherwise known as the “end of the line” when going downtown on the Metra NW train line. This is the best place to wait for your train and hang for awhile. Why? It’s nothing special to look at, right? No, but they give you a very strong drink at a fair price (for Chicago, anyway) and have also figured a way to give you a roader that will give you no problems on the train – in a large styrofoam coffee cup with a lid.
Not that you are not allowed to drink on the train – you still can. (Hell, they used to still have bar cars on the commuter trains until just a few years ago.) But, the coffee cup ruse gives you the added bonus of people thinking that you’re drinking coffee, and perhaps not on your fourth rum & diet. This way, you don’t get the annoying looks and stares from the other boring commuters and conductors like the beer drinkers do.
It’s not just the Chicago News Room that facilitates the time-honored tradition of the commuter train buzz – a friend of mine who used to commute daily had a “deal” with the little newspaper stand just a few stores over from this place where each weekday the guy working the stand would place two 40 oz Miller Lites in a brown paper bag at 4:30pm next to the cash register. My friend would whiz by and grab the Miller Lites on the way to his 4:45 train. He would pay the guy at the end of each week for that week’s worth of beer. No muss, no fuss. Now that’s customer service!
Plusses: Strong Drinks & Coffee Cup Roaders – need I say more?
Minuses: No Food, Kind of Depressing
A T-RATING® of 4 out of 5