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How to Do Chicago's Wrigley Field Right

A guide to Wrigley Field, where to eat and drink, and how to get there

If you're lucky enough to score tickets to any of the games, or just want to soak in the atmosphere around Wrigley Field, here are some tips and a little background to make the most of your visit.

All About Wrigley

The stadium, built in 1914, is one of Chicago’s most charming attractions. Ivy grows on the brick outfield walls; spectators perch on rooftop decks across the street; home runs sometimes clear the park to land on Waveland Avenue; and the 78-year-old scoreboard is hand-operated.

How to Get to Wrigley Field

Unlike many modern stadiums, Wrigley isn’t surrounded by parking lots. It’s smack in the middle of a vibrant neighborhood of restaurants, bars and 100-year-old apartment buildings and homes. The old ballpark and the area around it will burst with energy as fans cheer for the Cubs to win their first championship since 1908.

From downtown, take the Red Line El train toward Howard. Wrigley Field is about four miles north of the Loop and an easy 15- to 20-minute ride. Most fans get off at Addison, half a block from the stadium, but try Sheridan, one stop farther north. It’s two blocks away and less crowded. It’s also near some good eating options. Check the Chicago Transit Authority website for the map and fare information.

Where to Eat Out

Tac Quick is listed in the Michelin Guide to Chicago as one of the best places for authentic Thai cuisine | WhereTraveler
Get authentic Thai cuisine near Wrigley Field at Tac Quick. (©Ron Dollete/Flickr, Creative Commons)

Don’t pay exorbitant prices for food at Wrigley. Instead, eat dinner at a little-known but excellent and affordable storefront Thai restaurant steps from the Sheridan stop. Tac Quick is listed in the Michelin Guide to Chicago as one of the best places for authentic Thai cuisine. Service lives up to the name, meaning you get in and out without missing the first pitch. According to Yelp reviewers, there’s a “secret menu” that’s worth asking for. Also, it’s BYOB.

A little farther away is The Roost Carolina Kitchen. Going here means walking a mile between the train station, the restaurant and Wrigley, but if you love Southern-fried chicken, it’s worth it. The chicken is cooked to order and arrives at your table spicy and juicy, with big gobs of crispy crust.

Where Grab a Beer After the Game

After the game, it’s traditional to celebrate a victory or drown a defeat with a beer at a local bar. Murphy’s Bleachers, across from the bleachers, offers outdoor tables. For a more traditional neighborhood bar, try G-Man, a block north of Wrigley and the only nonsports bar in the neighborhood. Its laid-back atmosphere hasn’t changed since the early 1990s, with old-fashioned tile floors, friendly service and pool tables. If you want to sound like a local, call it the Gingerman, its name before new owners bought it.

Nearby Attraction: Alta Vista Terrace

One block north of Wrigley is Alta Vista Terrace, a quiet lane straight out of 19th century London. A Chicago historic district, the narrow, shady, one-block street features 20 row houses on each side, all built between 1903 and 1904 and decorated with bay windows, stained glass, arches and columns. It’s on the way back to the Sheridan El stop and a lovely place to finish your night at Wrigley.

See you at Wrigley, and go Cubs, go!