Hit the can

Carrie MacQuaid

Cans Bar and Canteen, 1640 N. Damen Ave., is a confused place. This classy sports bar isn’t a girl’s bar, but it isn’t a man’s bar either. It’s clean with rich mahogany tables but filled with TVs and beer. It’s somewhere between the usual extremes – which might explain its popularity among neighborhood locals.

On weekend nights, the bar usually is packed, but if you’re lucky enough to flag down servers, they can send your order electronically through their handy Palm Pilots back to the bar and your drink will be there in no time. But deciding what to drink should be easy because patrons of Cans, fittingly, drink cans of beer. The bar offers more than 30 varieties, but those feeling adventurous can also have a cocktail from one of the three full-service bars. The kitchen stays open until midnight and offers a variety of bar food, because – let’s face it – nothing goes better with beer than grease.

The bar has a lively atmosphere, with plenty of people having fun. The place is good for sitting back and watching sports with friends. But a word of warning to the ladies – don’t go during a sports game. If you make the mistake of visiting while the White Sox are playing in the World Series, you could run around naked and no one would notice you.

Weekly specials include 25-cent wing night on Monday and $4 vodka cocktails Thursday. But you’re sure to have fun any night.

Cans Bar and Canteen is open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 3 a.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sunday. It can be reached by the Damen stop on the CTA Blue Line.

– Carrie MacQuaid