This week, hundreds of millions of people around the globe will be watching the World Cup, cheering on their nations' teams as they compete in the monthlong soccer tournament. Plenty of local bars and hangouts are hosting viewing parties or offering giveaways and specials, which means tons of soccer-fueled fun for both casual and die-hard fans alike. Here's your guide to the highlights; browse more World Cup soccer bar specials here.
Dank Haus German American Cultural Center
4740 N. Western Ave. 773-561-9181
Serious fans dressed and painted in Germany's black, red and gold will gather at this Lincoln Square hub to watch matches on two 50-inch sets and a 20-foot projector screen. The center opens an hour before each match, so arrive early to stake out space and enjoy German food and beer including $3 pretzels, $4 Landjaeger sausage pairs and $5 half liters of Stiegl Radler.
Sedgwick's Bar & Grill
1935 N. Sedgwick St. 312-337-7900
The Netherlands Club of Chicago is setting up camp at this Lincoln Park bar, where the staff welcomes orange-clad fans with $5 drafts of Dutch beer Heineken, $10 dozens of bitterballen (deep-fried meatballs popular at Dutch bars) and jersey giveaways during the first three Dutch games. Sedgwick's will air all other games and serve $18 domestic buckets, so you can come to watch no matter your allegiance.
325 S. Franklin St. 312-212-3262
This Loop sports bar hosts a full lineup of viewing parties, starting with beer samples and giveaways from Michigan's Bell's Brewery during the U.S. vs. Ghana match June 16. On June 20, you'll be entered into a drawing for a Peroni Italian soccer jersey for every $5 Peroni draft you order while Italy plays Costa Rica. During the Germany vs. U.S. game June 26, earn a chance to win a Krombacher German jersey by ordering $5 brews. Fans of German beer also will get some love in the form of beer samples and souvenir glassware from Brewery Weihenstephan during a semifinals watch party July 9.
1028 N. Clark St. 312-929-2035
Party promoter Afrodisiac is devoted to bringing African music to Chicago's clubs, but on June 14, the party takes up residence at this Gold Coast bar and restaurant to celebrate the five African countries playing in the World Cup: Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Nigeria, Ghana and Algeria. Watch the 8 p.m. match between Ivory Coast and Japan live, then stick around to see the recorded Cameroon vs. Mexico game while dancing to beats from DJs Top Donn and Ziggs.
2434 W. Montrose Ave. 872-208-7246
The Ravenswood restaurant spotlights a different country's cuisine every month; for June, chef Roger Herring whips up a $33 three-course menu with dishes from World Cup host Brazil. Feast on shrimp and corn empanadas and bolinhos (fried dumplings) topped with cinnamon sugar and passionfruit sauce, which pair well with the Midnight in Rio cocktail ($9), made with Brazilian liqueur Cedilla, Veev acai liqueur, soda and lime juice. On June 13 and 20, guitarist Neal Alger will perform Brazilian music at 8:30 p.m. The restaurant will open early to show all the games live.
Chop Shop/1st Ward
2033 W. North Ave. 773-537-4440
You can take a meaty tour of the competing countries at this Wicker Park butcher shop, bar and event space, which will serve a rotating menu of $4 housemade sausages including bratwurst, chorizo, Italian sausage and caprese sausage, plus $4 Revolution Brewing beers. Throughout the tournament, sales from $4 Chicago Fire sausages made with green peppers, onion and provolone will benefit the soccer team's charitable efforts. There's room for 200 people to watch every match on a 30-foot projector screen with sound.
2049 W. Division St. 773-772-2727
The American Outlaws, a group dedicated to supporting the U.S. National Soccer Team, host parties at this Wicker Park bar for the three American group matches, which will feature giveaways, $5 Firestone Walker Pivo Pils and $3 Coors Banquet. Held at 5 p.m. June 16 and 22 and 11 a.m. June 26, the bashes also will run at neighboring bars Innjoy (2051 W. Division St.) and The Fifty/50 (2047 W. Division St.), which will be offering $1 off all drafts and $4 craft drafts, respectively.
A.J. Hudson's Public House
3801 N. Ashland Ave. 773-348-2767
Owned by an English soccer fanatic, this Lakeview pub has shown games since it opened in 1992, then named Ginger's Ale House. This year, the bar also serves as home base for Italian soccer, with official sponsor Puma running Italy-themed trivia and giving away hats, bags and mini-balls during the team's games. You can come in any day to enjoy $4 BridgePort or Shiner cans or bottles or $4.50 Trumer Pils or Shiner drafts while watching a match inside or on TVs visible from the sidewalk cafe.
Harbee Liquors & Tavern
1345 W. 18th St. 312-733-0333
This Pilsen bar hosts a no-cover viewing party for the Brazil vs. Croatia game June 12 featuring $6 caipirinhas. Brazilian music from Planeta Azul and beats from Soulphonetics DJs starts an hour before the 3 p.m. game and continues at halftime and post-game.
Samantha Nelson is a RedEye special contributor. firstname.lastname@example.org | @redeyeeatdrinkCopyright © 2015, RedEye