Chicago Bar Project since 2000
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Wise Fools Pub


2270 N. Lincoln Ave. (2300N, 700W)
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 348-8899



Wise Fools Pub ExteriorWise Fools Pub has a long and intriguing history that has played out in three acts. Act I: Wise Fools Pub opens in 1968 and becomes one of the North Side's most popular blues clubs, particularly once David Ungeleider takes over in 1972 and invites blues legends from South Side clubs like Theresa's, such as Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf and Jimmy Dawkins. George Thorogood made his first Chicago appearance at Wise Fools Pub, and Otis Rush and Mighty Joe Young both recorded live albums here. Act II: Ungeleider sells his pub in 1993, new ownership renames it Waterloo Tavern and features mainly local rock and cover bands to appeal to the increasing post-frat weekend traffic along Lincoln Avenue. Act III: Waterloo is sold in 2001 and transformed once again into Wise Fools Pub by Mike and Dan Cordis. Dan worked at Waterloo and got the idea for the rebirth of Wise Fools Pub from neighborhood locals and former owner Ungeleider himself, who gave his blessing on opening night, accompanied by music from bluesman Son Seals. As a postscript, Wise Fools Pub is now owned by Chris Perry and Big Bill Vance. The new duo renovated Wise Fools Pub in 2007 into a hybrid between Waterloo Tavern and the original, with a new sound system. Mainly jam bands and cover bands are now featured, in addition to a large beer selection, darts, pool, Golden Tee, and a loungey atmosphere. Wise Fools Pub doesn't serve food, but you'll find the Aladdin Falafel House next door. For more information, check out the Wise Fools website.

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Wise Fools Pub Facade