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Inside Emporium’s Branca Bar, Surf Bar’s Amaro-Focused Replacement, Now Open

Fernet fans should pop in tonight for opening day

Branca Bar opens tonight.
Nick Fochtman

Branca Bar, the first in a series of pop-ups planned for the former Surf Bar space in Logan Square, opens tonight. It’s an intriguing business model for the owners, Danny and Doug Marks of Emporium Arcade Bar fame, who shuttered Surf after six months. They’ve traded bright-colored beach vibes for the warm embrace of Fernet-Branca, the Italian digestif held in high regard among bartenders.

In fact, Branca Bar is aimed at giving the general public a window to the bar industry. There will be rotating bartenders and menus. This version of the pop-up will last through March, at least. There’s a chance it could extend through April.

Patrons will enter through neighboring Emporium and experience a much more rustic atmosphere when compared to Surf. Dark colors and communal tables wipe the memory of the previous cabana feel. There’s a new pool table and couches, too.

Take a look at the photos below. Branca Bar opens 7 p.m. tonight. They’ll be open 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday before operating under normal hours.

Branca Bar, 2367 N. Milwaukee Ave., (872) 206-5245, open 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Wednesday through Sunday.

Nick Fochtman

Branca Bar

2367 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647 (872) 206-5245 Visit Website

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