While venturing through Boystown, you may stumble across F. O'Mahony's (formerly Finley Mahony's), a cozy little bar on the corner of Broadway and Waveland Avenues. Bedecked with Big Ten flags and large black and red paneled windows, it won't likely strike you as a bar typical for that area.
Inside, you immediately feel welcome; the staff and jovial crowd are happy to include more drinkers or diners. Sit and chat with other after-workers at the bar, grab a spot at one of the wooden islands to see the game better or get comfortable at a table overlooking the street so you can people-watch with your date.
"I wanted this to be an oasis in Boystown for straights," says owner Dominick O'Mahoney, perhaps Chicago's answer to Sam Malone. He named the bar for his recently-born son. "Around here, there didn't seem to be a place where you could go with your wife or girlfriend, have a drink and enjoy a nice meal," says O'Mahoney, who also has a hand in running Little Italy's Drum & Monkey.
The menu features some posh items you don't usually expect from (generally sub-par) bar fare. It was planned by Tom Chapman, who previously worked with Bistro 110 and the Drake Hotel. For $12.50, you can get an enormous salad bowl with roasted peppers, pineapple, soy-marinated chicken, cucumbers and goat cheese. Specialties include the cock-a-leekie pie, a dish made from fresh chicken and leeks simmered in a mushroom cream sauce and topped with a puff pastry lid. Those who come to drink and watch the sporting event du jour with friends munch on appetizers like sliders and goat cheese veggie folds. Everybody's favorite meal, Sunday brunch, generally runs from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Average cost: $10-$20
Centerstage Reviewer: Paige Gray