Emporium Arcade Bar opening Tuesday | Photo gallery
In a time when gaming means poorly drawing something on your iPhone, Danny and Doug Marks are bringing a little nostalgia to Wicker Park with a bar stocked with 24 craft beers on tap and 35–40 classic arcade games, mostly from the '80s and '90s. "There's so many great small breweries in the Midwest and Chicago," says Danny: Emporium will feature beers from rotating breweries like Revolution, Founders, Great Lakes, Goose Island, Metropolitan and Lakefront Brewing, plus out-of-towners like Lagunitas, Dogfish Head and Allagash. Yet instead of antlers or local art, the walls of Emporium are lined with arcade games, which the Marks brothers found locally through Craigslist. "These games are so colorful," Danny says, "and the artwork on a lot of them is really intricate." They're not meant to be decor, however: They're meant to be played, for 25 cents, a concept Danny picked up from Barcade in Brooklyn, where he used to work. “This hearkens back to a simpler time,” Danny says, “when a video game was a 500-pound box.”
Emporium Arcade Bar (1366 N Milwaukee Ave, emporiumchicago.com) is slated to open Tuesday—if not sooner.