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Old Fifth: Pizza and Whiskey Bar Comes to Madison Street

By Chloe Riley | June 2, 2013 8:28am

WEST LOOP — The Old 5th loves whiskey so much, even its steaks get a coating of the stuff.

“I’m from an Irish family. Whiskey was always like a staple in the household,” general manager Brian Wiley said. 

The bar, at 1027 W. Madison St., opens Tuesday and Wiley said he’s excited to see the neighborhood feedback.

Named after the city's old Fifth Ward, the bar’s fanciness level is “not quite Randolph [Street], not quite Madison” as Wiley puts it. It’s the kind of place where you can kick back in a leather chair as you chase your pizza down with whiskey.

Several tables at Old 5th will have mini iPads; servers will use them to put in drink orders while patrons can do instant research on the whiskey and cheese they’re consuming.

Head Chef Philip Cohen comes straight from three years as a sous chef at TRU and a solid eight years working various restaurant gigs in “the mountains of Colorado.”

The menu has whiskey and plenty of it, whether slathered on chicken wings, glazed on salmon or soaked in steak. There are also non-whiskey items like the Brazilian Nachos, with slow-roasted pork shoulder with aged white cheddar, avocado puree and Brazilian black beans. Or the “Formerly Known As Tots,” would be tater tots stuffed with chives, Applewood smoked bacon and Camembert cheese. 

But Wiley swears it’s the pizza that’ll stick with you. “The Fifth Ward” pizza alone has five different meats on it, not to mention the Bourbon BBQ pulled pork and Chihuahua cheese that grace the “Kentucky Pizza Kitchen.”

Hours are 11 a.m. to midnight Sunday to Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday.