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The Matchbox

Bar$$$$
River West, Chicago
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9.0/10
194
ratings
  • Olivia L.
    "Best gin gimlets on earth; amazing margs"(20 Tips)
    Cris F.
    "Must haves: Margarita, Sidecar and Brandy Manhattan."(3 Tips)
    MJ B.
    "The infused vodkas are delicious."(2 Tips)
    ben m.
    "The music is always good and the beer list is always strong."(4 Tips)
66 Tips and reviews
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  • martinis
  • good for a late night
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  • Bob D.
    Bob DeGraffFebruary 26
    This place is narrower than most hallways but the cocktails are definitely excellent. They aren't steering you wrong when they tell you to go for the gimlets and margaritas.
  • Grace A.
    Grace AldridgeDecember 12, 2015
    Perfect cozy bar to get a little drunk when it's cold out. Don't order food from next door though, it's pretty gross.
  • Noah M.
    Noah ManionOctober 3, 2015
    Seriously, #margz
  • Joseph B.
    Joseph BlewittSeptember 18, 2015
    Even on a weekday afternoon, there's no room to sit or stand. Consider that before you trek out here.
  • ben m.
    ben mJuly 14, 2015
    Pretty much can't go wrong with any of the cocktails. The music is always good and the beer list is always strong.
  • Redeye Chicago
    Redeye ChicagoJanuary 16, 2015
    This spot is Chicago's smallest social Petri dish at an impossible 460 square feet. After even one of the potent, oversized cocktails served here, nearly everything feels electric. Read more
  • TV Food Maps
    TV Food MapsAugust 29, 2014
    Check out The Matchbox as seen on Drinking Made Easy Read more
  • Chefs Feed
    Chefs FeedAugust 22, 2014
    Rick Gresh, chef of David Burke’s Primehouse, eats here on his nights off. He loves the Vodka gimlet. Read more
  • Kellen T.
    Kellen TerrettAugust 10, 2014
    I've meet some amazing people at the matchbox. It's my favorite bar to end up at on New Year's Eve.
  • Chicagoist
    ChicagoistAugust 1, 2014
    One of the best date bars in Chicago: it's completely unpretentious, yet also manages to remain under the radar enough that it's a perfect card to keep in your back pocket. Read more
  • Joey N.
    Joey NowakJuly 26, 2014
    They don't cheat you on drinks. Get a martini
  • Djuana S.
    Djuana StoakleyApril 23, 2014
    The smoked meat sandwich is still delicious!
  • Ramsey M.
    Ramsey MohsenJanuary 21, 2014
    Tiny dive, but it's awesome. Ask about the "Wizards Blood Drink" and make sure to get the magic wand with it :)
  • Sheila B.
    Sheila BondsJanuary 17, 2014
    It's called matchbox for a reason. Have a gimlet! 🍸
  • Taylor K.
    Taylor KonigsederOctober 6, 2013
    Margaritas and gimlets all the way! Tiny place, but quite a treat.
  • Paul F.
    Paul FriemelJune 16, 2013
    Get a gimlet and try not to use the bathroom if you can help it
  • Nick C.
    Nick CannariatoMay 17, 2013
    What to Order || Margarita with egg white and lemon-lime juice
  • Jamie M.
    Jamie MackMay 9, 2013
    Ask for the French 75, it's divine.
  • Chase T.
    Chase TurnerMay 9, 2013
    It's not on the menu, but it's the best kept secret in Chicago. Order a French 75, they'll know what you're talking about.
  • Jake S.
    Jake SmithApril 5, 2013
    The Kentucky Tiki is the play here. It tastes like the beaches of Hawaii and the backwoods of Kentucky at the same time.
  • Paul M.
    Paul MorganMarch 31, 2013
    The margarita - thats all there is
  • Pablo J.
    Pablo JaraMarch 17, 2013
    Fome la música
  • Time Out Chicago
    Time Out ChicagoMarch 6, 2013
    Every drink tastes like a classic cocktail should, replete with a healthy dose of booze. The margaritas and gimlets are still the draw: smooth, delicious and sweet: http://tmoutchi.us/13EV7jr Read more
  • Erin
    ErinMarch 4, 2013
    Best Gimlet I've ever had, the powdered sugar on the rim made it even better. Gotta come back soon.
  • Shannon H.
    Shannon HeathFebruary 1, 2013
    Try the Margarita!
  • Tiffany S.
    Tiffany SteffensDecember 23, 2012
    Best place - hands down - for a cocktail.
  • Miroslav L.
    Miroslav LysyukAugust 7, 2012
    Best manhattan in town.
  • Scott K.
    Scott KahleJuly 10, 2012
    Sit inside and you'll get a much better Matchbox experience.
  • ❤Diva4life🎵
    ❤Diva4life🎵June 23, 2012
    The cosmos r off da chain.....
  • Time Out Chicago
    Time Out ChicagoJune 4, 2012
    Gin gimlets, extra sugar, please.
  • Time Out Chicago
    Time Out ChicagoMay 29, 2012
    Gin gimlets, extra sugar, please. -FS Read more
  • Olivia L.
    Olivia LeighMay 13, 2012
    Best gin gimlets on earth; amazing margs
  • Amanda C.
    Amanda CooperMay 10, 2012
    They make a great margarita! They also have a good cigar selection!
  • AskMen
    AskMenApril 11, 2012
    Those looking for a no-nonsense cocktail joint probably won't find a bar with fewer frills than The Matchbox. Read more
  • Olivia L.
    Olivia LeighApril 4, 2012
    Only gin gimlet in the city worth drinking
  • Kathy
    KathyMarch 18, 2012
    Great classic drinks. Try the gimlets.
  • Katie B.
    Katie BMarch 7, 2012
    Best brandy manhattans
  •  Deon P.
     Deon ParconMarch 4, 2012
    Pineapple gimlet FTW
  • Erin W.
    Erin WynnJanuary 14, 2012
    Vodka gimlet is the way to go.
  • G R.
    G RobDecember 17, 2011
    Pineapple gimlet. Just do it.
  • Leyla A.
    Leyla ArsanNovember 27, 2011
    The original "cocktail bar" in Chicago. If you're not cool to the staff, they'll mock you publicly - so be nice.
  • Michael M.
    Michael MosesNovember 20, 2011
    WTF. Don't get a Manhattan like everyone says. If the bartender is the well bearded guy, you are better off with beer. Is this a Manhattan?
  • Jamie
    JamieNovember 4, 2011
    Literally the size of a matchbox w/ THE best drinks! Try the pineapple gimlet (made with egg whites and powdered sugar) or any drinks made w/ their own ginger-infused vodka!
  • Adam S.
    Adam SegerOctober 9, 2011
    To prevent a hangover, Have an antioxidant-packed 70 Proof hum on the rocks & chug a pint of water at the end of your evening of outstanding cocktails here
  • S D Pete G.
    S D Pete GlassSeptember 4, 2011
    Amazing is all I can say
  • Adam S.
    Adam SegerAugust 20, 2011
    Localize your Manhattan (which they do amazingly here) with locally made hum in place of the sweet Vermouth
  • Jen R.
    Jen RobinsonAugust 17, 2011
    The world's narrowest bar. (Not really, but feels like it.) Order something with sugar on the rim. You won't regret it.
  • Karen C.
    Karen ClaytonJuly 5, 2011
    pineapple gimlet! Read more
  • Sima D.
    Sima DahlMay 31, 2011
    Named for its tiny size, this place is huge on personality! Read more
  • Manbque
    ManbqueApril 30, 2011
    Order an old school gentleman's drink. They make cocktails right.
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