Thursday, June 14, 2012

Smooth Sailing in Troubled Waters: Weather Mark Tavern celebrates six years in the South Loop

Weather Mark is the only
nautically themed bar in Chicago.

Weather Mark Tavern at 1503 S. Michigan Ave. celebrates six years in the South Loop Saturday, June 16, 2012. Weather Mark is the only bar in Chicago with a nautical theme, featuring great food and drink in a casual, family-friendly atmosphere.

Owner Mark Stern’s vision was to open an establishment with a casual bar atmosphere featuring upscale entrees and appetizers, along with craft beers and rum drinks. Stern remembers when his concept was considered a risk at best and foolish at worst. “We were a ‘gastro pub’ before the term was coined. From day one, we offered food that wasn’t normally part of a casual tavern’s menu,” Stern said. At Weather Mark Tavern, you can order a Reuben sandwich with fries or a filet mignon with port wine reduction, potato spring roll, and asparagus off of the same menu.

Click on poster above to enlarge.
When Stern opened Weather Mark in June 2006, the South Loop was one of the hottest neighborhoods in Chicago. Once upon a time, the area south of Roosevelt Road was populated with old—and mostly abandoned—factories and warehouses. It wasn’t until the late 1990s that residential development kicked off the boom. And then came 2008 and the economic downturn. Dozens of businesses in the South Loop closed. For several years, things looked pretty bleak, but somehow Weather Mark Tavern navigated the choppy waters of the recession. “We’ve seen businesses come and go in the South Loop, but we’ve managed to stay fresh and relevant to our customers and there’s a lot more competition in this neighborhood than there was in 2006,” notes Stern. What about 2012 and beyond? According to Stern, it looks like  “smooth sailing” ahead.

The 6th anniversary celebration includes giveaways, free appetizer buffet, live music and DJ, champagne toast.

For more information on the anniversary event and Weather Mark Tavern, call 312.588.0230. You can also find them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

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