Michelin Returns to Rating After A Year Off
And Pictures of Dives smells another opportunity to sellout
Welcome back to the Pictures of Dives substack! A substack about drinking, bars, and whatever else is on my mind. If you enjoy reading the substack, consider subscribing (for free!) and sharing it with your friends.
Restaurant-reviewing tire company Michelin is giving out stars to high-end dining establishments again for the first time since Covid-19 caused massive shutdowns across the globe a little over a year ago. My extensive research on Wikipedia taught me that the tire company began these reviews in the early 1900 as a way to encourage travel (and therefore new demand for cars and of course, tires.) Since its introduction, it has expanded its reviews across the globe, has been embroiled in multiple scandals involving tax evasion, bribes, open bias toward particular cuisine, and power over the success and failure over a dining establishment.
The restaurants they review are places you and I will never go to. You’re reading an unemployed guy’s substack he made after the success of a novelty twitter account. We both know luxuries like these are for how the other half lives. But even if you hit it big tomorrow and subject yourself to a lifetime of small plates over several courses and dinner bills higher than mortgages, why would you trust a tire company to give you dining tips? It’s 2021 and the internet exists specifically so self important people with too much time and/or money can write extensive reviews on literally every website that allows you to write anything down. What gives Michelin - which I feel like I should stress again is, in fact, a tire company - authority over these restaurants? Well, why do 33 some odd thousand people follow me on Twitter? The answer is simple, they (or I) did it first and everyone went along with it. A perfect grift and a simple scam. It’s time for me to get in on that action.
So after a quick google search of “worst tire brand” I am proud to introduce The Chaoyang Dive Bar Rating System (pending a rename as soon as I get sued by Chaoyang Tire). Our rating system will be a 100% authentic dive bar certifying process, with a completely objective and rigorous rating system that will celebrate service, atmosphere, menu selection, and most importantly will be a scam to make me lots and lots of money AND give me almost unlimited power over the industry I review. Here are your 2021 Chicago Chaoyang Dives (Ratings are on a 1-4 tire scale because it’s a tire company and why the hell would you do it out of 3 stars when 4 tires are sitting right there. Hey 1900s tire marketing idiots, ever heard of a little thing called brand synergy?)
Chipp Inn - 832 N Greenview Ave, Chicago, IL 60642
An unassuming neighborhood spot that’s cash only and has been open since 1897. This bar is everything you want in a dive. Pool table, bunch of neon signs, wood paneling. 4 tires
Woodlawn Tap - 1172 E 55th St, Chicago, IL 60615
You better not be caught calling this place, a favorite among University Chicago Students, by its actual name. Regulars and locals know it only as “Jimmy’s,” after the original owner. Cash only and with an extremely cheap menu of half decent food, this is a can’t miss spot and Chaoyang is proud to award it with 4 tires.
Billy Goat Tavern - Lower, 430 Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
Is a bar really a dive when it has two locations and is considered “world famous?” Yes it is, 4 tires.
Caminos de Michoacan - 1659 W Cullerton St
Got drunk here about a week ago, great time! 4 tires.
Cunneen's - 1424 W Devon Ave, Chicago, IL 60626
Been here a couple times and am still sort of unclear how to pronounce it. Way too many “n’s” and vowels. Almost lost a tire for that but last time I was here someone else bought me a drink and bribing works so: 4 tires.
Connie and Johnny’s - 3745 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
Great stuff! 4 tires!
Did your favorite bar make the cut or will you spend the next year engrossed in scandal and political intrigue to earn such a highly regarded and honored award? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter