5148 North Clark Street
Hopleaf is always bustling, even with its multiple rooms and levels. Not bustling in a bad way though, not even a lot of standees, just a lot of people looking for a seat and a distinguished beverage.
Big and consistently humming, the front room of Hopleaf is very saloonesque. A big hulking mass of a bar dominates the south end of the room, low tables occupy the middle, and the north wall is lined with booths all made up of the same dark stained rough wood. The bar is stacked with taps; over 30 varieties of Belgian, Belgian-style and craft brews are available straight from the barrel. If for some reason nothing on tap piques your interest, Hopleaf stocks over 250 types of bottled beer, many displayed on the glass shelves to the left of the bar. In the off chance you have beer allergy, fine spirits and wine are, of course, available.
The back room is lighter and with a high ceiling and exposed brick is almost airy. Modern furnishings and an industrial ambiance give the space a much different feel from the bar room, however it is reserved for diners until the kitchen closes.
On the weekend, head up the stairs for more rooms to enjoy. On the second floor make a slight detour toward the back room and check out the cozy loft space holding court above the main dining area. Heading back toward the street, directly above the main bar is a comfortable space with a small bar nook on the north wall. A large chalkboard posted beside the small bar counter proclaims which of the hundreds of beers are immediately available. In addition, the walls, though also baring their brick, are plastered with new and vintage beer signs giving the space a much different feel than the dining room. Bright neon signs shining out the upstairs windows at surrounding Andersonville lighten up the tables and booth seating keeping the space light and friendly.