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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Thursday, June 30

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Bar Mon Sep 24 2012

Metro's Joe Shanahan Buys the Gingerman Tavern

The Gingerman Bar Chicago

It's a time-honored tradition: getting a drink at the Gingerman Tavern before or after a show at the Metro. The two spots are now even more closely bound, as news broke today that Metro owner Joe Shanahan has purchased the Gingerman from its longtime owner, Dan Schnitta. A July real estate listing of the building, which contains three second-floor apartments in addition to the bar, set the price at $2.3 million; the final sale price was not announced.

"Both Gingerman and Metro have contributed to a Wrigleyville spark that is being drowned out by more modern establishments," said Schnitta in a press release. "Joe understands the revelry necessary to carry on that spirit." Schnitta said he plans to focus his attention on his other business, the Gingerman Raceway in South Haven, MI. He plans to celebrate the transfer with an open track party Oct. 20.

A statement from the Metro said there are no immediate plans to change the bar, though "future plans may draw upon the business' relationship with Metro and Smart Bar next door and could include new beer and liquor options as well as special events."

Gapers Block has held several get-togethers at the Gingerman over the years, and will likely continue to in the future. The folks behind the bar are friendly, the beer and whiskey lists are interesting and deep, and the pool tables in the triangular second room are well-maintained. Plus, the jukebox is one of the most eclectic in the city. It's great to hear that it will be kept "in the family," so to speak, rather than becoming another anonymous Wrigleyville bar.

Photo credit: Christopher Macsurak

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picaresque / September 24, 2012 4:48 PM

I heard a rumor that the name would be changed to "G-man." I hope that is untrue. The bar is named after a novel by Irish/American writer J.P. Donleavy (who also wrote "Fairy Tale of New York," title used in a Pogues song). Much cooler history than faux-hipster "G-man."

Wolvrne88 / September 24, 2012 6:48 PM

Go to The Gingerman and order a shot of The Grind. Espresso liqueur served in a frozen shot glass - awesome!

Lisa / September 24, 2012 10:23 PM

G-Man is NOT some hipster nickname. Regulars have been calling it the G-Man for 20+ years. Oh, Dan. Miss ya already. Love saying "Schnitta"! I'm gonna cry. Must get the geezers together for One last visit. Joe, of all people, should know to leave just the way it is. please.

Jonas / September 24, 2012 11:01 PM

Oh good, now the beer there will be $8 too.

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

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