Despite the rad gangster history here, this is first and foremost a jazz bar. Don't let that, or a potential cover charge for the live music, stop you from visiting, though. The experience of being in a crowded, gorgeously ornate historic bar with a crowd of people of all ages, all fixated on the incredible music and charismatic performers, was so incredibly special. I watched a millennial shush other patrons to hear the music better! If there's no seating, just wait for something to open up; it'll happen sooner than you think, just be polite. And even though the drinks are no-frills, they're tasty... although I went with a beer, an Eliot Ness, for Al Capone reasons.
“A Famous Chicago Speakeasy”
The Green Mill is sophisticated informality, warm glowing atmosphere steeped in the heady sounds of the early ’30s and ’40s; it was actually patterned after Clark Monroe’s Uptown House in Harlem (as it was during the ’40s). Uniquely comfortable to all audiences from the sequined Saturday night date to the progressively dressed offbeat student, the magic of the Mill is that the audience commingles in its mutual respect for the music. And, in the far corner, in all her alabaster glory, stands Ceres, Goddess of Harvest, rechristened Stella by Starlight by the house musicians. Stella was salvaged from the lower depths of the Green Mill, dusted off, and returned to complement the authenticity of the art deco/art nouveau décor in the light fixtures and artwork, embellished with lavishly scrolled frames. Shades of Al Capone’s heyday are found in the wall memorabilia as you enter and in the famous booth where he and his henchmen could keep a cautious eye on both doors. Today, the Green Mill, in keeping with owner Dave Jemilo’s philosophy for a proper mix of down-to-earth friendliness and class, maintains an authenticity of the ‘40s in service, price and music, perfected upon with the steady Sunday night performance of the internationally acclaimed Uptown Poetry Slam which Marc Smith began at the Mill in 1986. Featured on Drinking Made Easy!
The Green Mill is an awesome place, and is definitely worth checking out if you're in the area. The Green Mill is one of the oldest standing and longest running jazz venues in the world (on par with the Village Vanguard in NYC), and was once a favorite haunt of Al Capone. Stepping into the bar is an incredible trip through Chicago's history, and the music is also some of the best in the city.
Amazing experience. Gorgeous old interior that really feels like a time warp to another era. Cash only, $15 cover (it was a Friday night), but the band was fantastic. Place was packed, lots of young people, and *everyone* was totally feeling it. Like, shushing each other to hear better into it. Also, a few good beers available and one of the best Tom Collinses I've had in a while. Was crowded, standing room only, but if you hang out for a minute, you'll be able to snag a spot at the bar or a good spot with a view.
Credit card is NOT accepted there. It is CASH ONLY place. They do have an ATM inside though
A very cool way to step back in time and feel like a gangster in the 1930s, the atmosphere in here can't be found anywhere else!
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- Mon - Fri: 12:00 pm - 4:00 am
- Sat: 12:00 pm - 5:00 am
- Sun: 11:00 am - 4:00 am
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Credit Cards Accepted
- Does not take