Owner Colleen Flaherty wasn't kidding when she named her bar Tiny Lounge. But back in 2006, at the commencement of the big bad CTA's Brown Line Project, Tiny — which was located almost directly below the Addison Brown Line
stop — encountered a wrecking ball. It seemed like the end for Tiny, but then Flaherty found a solution: Re-open her popular bar in a slightly larger (though still tiny) space on Leavitt, just south of Lincoln Square. The CTA can't keep us out of our favorite bar.
In this new space, Flaherty trades in her art deco-like bar and cushy leather booths for a swank contemporary feel that puts Milk and Honey's decor to shame. Bamboo shoot-covered walls, minimalist abstract paintings and a mixture of intimate booths and a long bar help put Tiny's past life behind. Floor-to-ceiling windows encased in silver framing give the facade an industrial feel, yet the space itself is easy to miss because the bar and the apartment complex above share the same building. Tiny even has its own mailbox next to the building's tenants.
The signature martinis still stand out, however, as do the classic cocktails. If you're not in the mood for hard liquor, choose from one of a dozen beers on tap or 60-plus in bottles. Snack small plates while you drink (food is served until 1 a.m.). People watch through a seat by the window, or lounge at the bar. Whether or not you were a fan of the old Tiny's, this is a place to visit—and a nice escape from bustling Lincoln Square.
Centerstage Reviewer: Alicia Eler