When we first learned that Kaplan’s Liquors in Bridgeport was going to reopen as Maria’s Packed Goods & Community Bar, we were caught up on whether a certain high profile mixologist would be involved (turned out he wasn’t). But there turns out to be more drama going on than we realized. The classic dive bar in Bridgeport is getting serious uplift thanks to Ed Marszewski. Time Out paints this as completely positive, noting that the Ed is a “general Chicago indie art world guy-around-town,” and that his efforts are to create a space for “a vast network of artists, musicians and cultural workers of all stripes” to congregate. Sounds awesome, right? Well, not if you’re the Chicago Reader, which immediately revoked the bar’s Best of Chicago Award: “If there’s a ever been a reason to revoke a Best of Chicago Award, this has to be it.” The offense?
Actually, it makes a lot of sense. Kaplan’s used to be stocked with a collection of a dummies (like the puppet-kind, not the human kind), which won it the “Best Bar Full of Dummies” award. With the dummies gone, it’ll have to compete for a completely different award. Talking to the Reader Ed said, “We decided the only dummy staying was me.”
Maria’s Packaged Goods & Community Bar to open in Bridgeport [Time Out]
Kaplan’s Liquors Kicks Out the Dummies [Chicago Reader]