By Jaquelin Estrada
Simone’s is a bar and grill that is located in the Pilsen neighborhood in Chicago. It has been in this location for six years and has an environment that encourages dialogue with friends, neighbors, and even for finding new friends. Most nights, Simone’s offers DJs, karaoke, trivia, and live performances with the use of DJs.
The scene at Simone’s is unique because it is industrial and has many items made out of recycled materials. An example would be a bar-top which is built from a bowling alley lane and also booths being built from old pinball machines. The two main rooms each have a bar area with distinct styles within which allows the patron to choose where they would like to enjoy their drink. They also have a patio in the front which, when the Chicago weather allows, is an ideal way to spend the day with friends catching up.
The feature that catches most patron’s attention when they first walk in is the cage in the main front room where there is a DJ booth located on the side. People are allowed to go into this cage as they perform their favorite music in karaoke style. The location is about 20 minutes from UIC which is ideal for students who want to venture into Pilsen for the night.
Simone’s Bar is open Sunday through Friday from 11:30am until 2am. On Saturday, they are open from 11:30am until 3am. A great feature that Simone’s has is that they have a private room in the back (The Lab) which is available for private events and would be an interesting place to throw a birthday party. An upcoming event at Simone’s Bar is on Saturday, May 7th where they will have a live band called Son Libertad playing in celebration of the Cinco de Mayo weekend.
The first time that I went to this bar was last year and it is easily one of my favorite bars in Chicago. I went recently in order to make sure that the place was still good. I made sure to get to the bar before 9pm in order to get good seating and avoid the line that forms outside. My group and I sat down and were quickly served by the waitress who helped us choose a drink. When we looked at the menu, we instantly chose to get a Pilsen burgers since it was recommended by people who come here religiously. They were served on pretzel bread which was great and different than the regular bar food that we usually get. As it got later in the night, more people came into the the bar and it began to be more active.
As mentioned before, the cage feature about Simone’s is where people sing along to karaoke. The DJ at Simone’s was great and helpful, they took everyone’s music request and made sure to separate the music by genre. Once the drinks started to kick in, everyone began to have the time of their life and no one gave a shit who was watching them. I would highly recommend this place for this reason alone. Overall, this location was perfect for a night out with friends and not having to worry about them being too loud. If you have friends who always end up singing along to music at the bar obnoxiously, why not bring them here?