Trivia starts promptly at 8pm, and we were able to grab a table at 7:15. The bar is huge compared to other bars that host trivia, but it is also a popular hangout for locals to watch sports (like last night’s Battle of the Journalism Schools) so we’d recommend getting there a little early. We witnessed a late-arriving team of 7 trying to cram into a table for 3; it was not pretty.
Like sister bars Schoolyard and Brownstone, Kirkwood has excellent trivia night specials: huge $3 burgers, $5 fish tacos, $14 buckets of Bud, and $4 Jager bombs. Last night, we were also treated with $3 pints of Magic Hat #9. It’s unclear whether the Magic Hat is a permanent special, but it should be — for every delicious and inexpensive pint we ordered, we got to play a round on the Magnificent Crapparatus, basically a Plinko board for Magic Hat schwag.
Trivia is played in six rounds: current events, Top 10 [most popular football teams], picture round [Bears], [football] movies, name-the-author, and name-the-movie based on three actors. Questions are moderately difficult, and hopefully not always so football-centric. Aside from football fanatics, the game rewards teams who eat and drink to excess: the team with the highest tab gets two bonus points added to its total score.
The real standouts at Kirkwood are the prizes. The overall winner gets 50% off the night’s tab (limit $50). But that’s not all. Each round’s winners get a prize, too: shots of O-bombs, pints of Magic Hat, free happy hour parties, a bucket of beer, free appetizers, and the Holy Grail — the elusive skillet cookie — which we might have won if only we had seen Little Giants. Add those to the Crapparatus prizes and everyone walks out with something.
As a bonus, every Monday starting January 12, you can watch 24 with sound before trivia! We can hardly contain our excitement.
Good trivia, great specials, plenty of prizes, Jack Bauer Power Hour. Talk about a Christmas Wish come true.
Kirkwood Bar & Grill
2934 N. Sheffield, Chicago
8pm to around 10pm (Update: new 9pm start time as of January 12)
3 paws (out of 4)