A New Watering Hole

Why Scofflaw has staying power

A round of complimentary midnight cookies should be standard at all neighborhood bars.

Never mind that the warm, chocolate-chip-studded disks didn't pair especially well with our vermouth-heavy gin martini ($8). The nightly midnight cookie service at Scofflaw is nonetheless an endearing element of the new cocktail bar.

Scofflaw straddles an awkward neighborhood line west of Bucktown and south of Logan Square. But the cookie service, along with a substantial food menu and low prices, transform Scofflaw into a destination and a welcome addition.

Dishes are impressively thoughtful. Sip a Scofflaw Swizzle #1 ($8), bright with rum, pineapple, orgeat and lime, with a mizuna salad ($8). The greens are draped across a cube of toast, avocado and a soft-yolked egg. Creamy ramp vinaigrette decorates the plate, tasting of plucky springtime.

Bourbon with Bénédictine and orange curaçao ($8) would do well by the brisket sandwich ($8), a hulking Gruyère grilled cheese packed with braised beef and caramelized onions. Thin fries with smoky pimentón aioli ($4) pair nicely with most any drink on the petite cocktail list.

Another noteworthy element, but not one we advise others to follow: Scofflaw has Malört, that oft-maligned Chicago wormwood liqueur and Chicago's bartender's handshake, on tap ($3 per shot).

Scofflaw, 3201 W. Armitage Ave.; scofflawchicago.com