Chicago >Food & Dining > Risque Cafe - American Craft Brews and Smokehouse
3419 N Clark St, Chicago, IL | Directions 6065741.944049 -87.653837
Neighborhoods: North Side, Lakeview
Great food, great craft beers, great atmosphere! – I'm sort of new to the city, moved to Lakeview a few months ago and couldn't go to any bars in Wrigleyville without running into crazy drunk loud obnoxious cubs fans. I stumbled into Risque last week and was suprised to see that it was not the typical kind of bar in this area, which was a huge relief! They don't play the annoying repetitive top 40 music, which I hear all day at work, and do not have douchebags running around ordering jagerbombs and fist pumping. It was one of the best experiences i had since moving to this area.
The food was AMAZING. They had fried pickles and fried BACON. I went with the fried bacon since i've never tried it before. It was SOOO good, I have never had anything like that before. We also ordered the mac and cheese with brisket on added to it and the ribs. The meat on the ribs was so tender, it literally fell off the bones, and the spices and smoke flavor was unbelievable.
That was just the food. Now on to the alcohol. I'm a fan of craft beer and i don't know much about it and i have never seen so many different bottles of beer in one bar. It took me almost 20 minutes to decide what I wanted to drink, and the bartender was very patient and helpful with my decision. He asked me what kind of beer i liked, what kind of flavors i preferred and even though i wasn't looking for anything specific, he found one for me that i absolutely loved (arcadia coco loco).
The decor in the bar fit the type of crowd that was in there, as well as the music that was being played. (alternative, rock, some metal)
We stayed until a little after the band started playing (had to work the next morning), i dont remember their name but they were pretty good, played some original songs and some great cover songs.
If you like rock music, great bbq, craft beers, great service and posters of half naked (yet tasteful) women on the walls, this is the place to be! I will definitely be visiting this place as often as I can.
Had a REALLY good time here! – WOW. Wow is all I can say about the beer list. It must be the most extensive in the City (it's 8 pages!). Really cool music, and they show all Blackhawks games which is cool. Try the fried pickles, they are good!
Eh... – I heard about this place by word of mouth and was quite excited by the idea of a vintage pin-up themed bar. I imagined Bettie Page films playing on old school projectors, twinkling lights, leopard, and an overall burlesque/boudoir feel. Sadly, I have to admit I was a little disappointed. The decor was just a couple of giant pin-up posters and the the TV screens were play Buffy The Vampire Slayer and what I think was a stripper documentary (or an episode of Intervention). Even if they had been playing quality vintage films only one screen was showing the 'risque' stuff so I had to turn around & crane my neck in order to see it, which just felt creepy. My guest and I were the only customers in the joint but the service took a while and they were inexplicably sold out of the beer my guest ordered. When the food finally came it was pretty run of the mill. The tater tots were clearly the frozen ones you can buy at the grocery store; the pulled pork was okay until I encountered some tough chewy fatty bits that had to be discretely spit out. They even got the Coke wrong (it tasted flat, watery, and barely recognizable). I think the idea of this place is brilliant but they just don't deliver.
Country fried bacon!!!!!!!!! – Ok, sooo… I know I’m not the smartest, but I am always at risqué, and a couple days ago, I realized it was connected to purgatory, I discovered a couple days ago – yes, I am Columbus! I can go on and on about me, wonderful me… Risque, I love you. Great food, bartenders, and the obvious beer selection – if I get fat I will get you! I really don’t have to go anywhere else in the city, Mexican food 2 doors down, purgatory pizza next door, and the infamous risqué café! It’s Nordstrom’s makeup counter for the boozer! Have you considered a country fried bacon eating contest? country fried bacon!
Best Bar in Wrigleyville – Almost all the bars in or around Wrigleyville are sports themed..not like there is anything wrong with that however if you want something different and fun i would venture into Risque. The food is great, there are so many different types of beers you need to look through a menu to choose one, the music is fitting (none of that club stuff you hear everywhere else) and random b movies playing on the tv, pinball machines and giant pinups. if you like rock and roll, bbq and beer you would love this place. This is definitely the one bar i will come to whenever I am in the area!
BEER....YUMMIE – I read a few of these reviews and I would have to say that I have never had one bad experience here. I love the beer selection. I love the hot bartenders. I love the food. Awesome pin-ups and great movies. This is a great concept. Rock on. This is my first choice when I' m in Wrigley. THANKS
Worst Service & Experience EVER – I was excited about Risque Cafe at first & when I called in my order, they said it was a slow night for them & their driver had nothing to do & that I'd get my food in one hour.
After 1.5 hours, I called to ask about my order. The girl who answered told me that the driver was just packing up my order & that she'd leave with my food right away. I asked why it took so long & the girl unapologeticaly said, "Oh, we're just busy."
Another hour passed & still no food. I don't live that far & the weather was fine. By that point, over 2.5 hours had passed since I placed my order. I called & said my food still hadn't arrived when I was told an hour earlier that the driver was just about to leave. The same girl answered & said, "Hmm... that's weird. You haven't gotten your food yet? I don't know why." I told them I wanted to cancel the order & didn't want my card to be charged & she just said okay. Never once did she apologize or try to offer me anything in return for my trouble, nor did she try to put the manager on the phone.
Shortly after I hung up, the driver came. She asked me if I wanted the food still & I told her that it had been almost 3 hours since I placed my order. She also seemed unapologetic & I had to ask if they would compensate us for our trouble. Finally, she admitted that the wait was ridiculous, told me to keep the food, & that I wouldn't be charged.
I know mistakes happen, but not a single person from Risque said "sorry" or even tried to empathize with my situation. Also, the food was HORRIBLE. The mac & cheese was mostaccioli w/shredded cheese on top & it was over-the-top salty. The broccoli w/beer cheese & fried green tomatoes were lackluster. The worst was the barely cooked corn on the cob that tasted like FISH. I don't know how corn on the cob ends up tasting like fish, but it was intolerable. Clearly, they don't care if they ever have my business or anyone else's business again. This was the worst experience EVER.
Foodie maybe it is you that is lack luster! – I don't think that I can say anything bad about this bar. The service is great, the beer is awesome, and the food is affordable, and tasty. The only thing that might bring this bar down is the occasional run of the mill yuppie that wonders in from barleycorn expecting dollar drafts, over the top service, and non stop jager bombs. The decor is cool, the b movies are badass. I think that short of the Gingerman this is the best bar in Wrigleyville.
How can you not like a place that has a lone graffiti tag on it's bathroom wall that says Stop Plate Tectonics. Which I will note got put up shortly before the resent earthquake.
Great barbecue, microbrews, and awesome B-horror movies. How can you go wrong? – I really have no idea why I see so many bad reviews for this place. I've had the pulled pork sandwich, brisket of beef sandwich, and barbecued chicken wings, and everything I've had was moist, tender, and sweet to the tongue. I've never had a problem with the service, I especially like how it's not a preppie-boy bar with deafeningly loud, bad music playing and enough people to make the bar itself a fire hazard (an experience I've had too often in Wrigleyville bars). This place is cool, I love the beer here, and how can you not like a place that shows awesome movies like The Shining, Death Race 2000, Army of Darkness, Bubba Ho-Tep, Takashi Miike's Imprint? Oh, and the food is not that expensive; $7-9 is not that pricey for barbecue fare as good as this.
REALLY AWFUL! – The TIME OUT reveiw was right. This place is definitely to be avoided. The food was bad and tasted like warmed up fast food, which was odd because it's not cheap. We sent back our food and were treated really badly as if we had done something out of place even though we were polite about it. And the phoney and outdated decor was a total turn off. We live in the area and there are so many better places close by.
Sign in with Facebook Sign in with Facebook to see what your friends are up to!
Do you have a review of Risque Cafe - American Craft Brews and Smokehouse on your blog? If you include the Citysearch image link (shown below) in your post, we'll automatically link to your review from the business profile page. Here's how our Linkback system works:
The Linkback system is free and automatic. It's really that easy.
To link to our business profile page, copy the html below to your web page.