First, Chicago Magazine has a great interactive post highlighting The 100 Best Bars in Chicago. It's not a straight list in the traditional sense, it's broken down into categories. The Sloop only had two spots registering on the list in the 18 Best Neighborhood Spots. The two spots are both mainstay hospitality owned:
City Tavern The team behind Chicago Firehouse modeled this eight-month-old spot on an 18th-century New England tavern. The roaring fire in the front lounge, a long wooden bar backed by lofty mirrors, and a 14-page roster of drinks would make Sam Adams proud.
Wabash Tap The local hang has somehow resisted the rest of the South Loop’s revamping—it’s still serving beer and Tots for under $6, and the pool sharks at the back tables give a welcoming nod to every visitor.If you're curious what else made the cut, we highly suggest checking out this nifty interactive map.
One of the categories in the Chicago Magazine article was for dive bars. The blog, Chicagoist, didn't really agree with Chicago Magazine's definition of dive bar (not surprisingly) and decided to provide their own rebuttal to the dive bar list. And George's Cocktail Lounge (646 S. Wabash) made the cut:
Longtime South Loop standby Cal's closed New Year's Eve but folks looking for a cheap drink, a jukebox whose selections haven't been changed in years and one last nip to go at last call only need to head a few blocks east to George's Cocktail Lounge. Located across the street from buddy Guy's Legends, this bar is popular with Columbia College students, neighborhood winos with some change to spend and newer South Loop residents looking for a final drink before sunrise and no shame as to where to find it. Pull up a seat next to a bar that's seen better days, enjoy some of the cheapest drinks downtown and waste hours people watching.If you haven't been to George's, it is most certainly the epitome of a dive. We've had some interesting experiences at said place (see story about Finnish man talking our ear off).