Friday, September 7, 2012

Schaller's Pump, Chicago's Oldest Tavern at 131 Years-- Part 1

From the September 6th Chicago Tribune "Beef, stories served thick and juicy" by Kevin Pang.

How do you beat this: White Sox, great food and drink and a whole lotta history?

Chicago's Bridgeport neighborhood (the Mayors Daley stronghold) has the city's oldest tavern, Schaller's Pump (at 3714 S. Halstead St.)  and is a mere 15 minute walk from where the Sox play (I call it Comiskey Park, but some say that's not the name)  Eat there and your parking is free, a quick $20 savings from Sox parking that you can put toward yourself and in your mouth.  That could easily cover a shrimp-and-ribs plate!!

The proprietor is 88-year-old Jack Schaller who has lived above the place for the last 35 years.  If he isn't out playing blackjack at a local casino, you can find him holding court (for you Route 66 fans, ala our beloved Ernie Edwards from the Pig Hip) in his place.  "Like many of his contemporaries, stories are his currency, spilling out from Schaller in a high-pitched and animated tenor."

His grandfather, George "Harvey" Schaller came to Chicago from Germany and opened the place in 1881 when Carter Harrison was mayor (and there have been 26 since then, including the long runs of the two Daleys).

More to Come.  --RoadDog

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