CHINATOWN — A cocktail bar in Chinatown has one main rule: absolutely no Taylor Swift music.
A sign on the door at Best Bar, 2233 S. Wentworth Ave., warns potential customers there’s a blank space on the DJ’s list of songs.
“Taylor Swift fans: You belong with me, but her music does not belong at this event,” the sign reads.
The rule came about after a regular submitted a list of requests for his 30th birthday celebration, and it included a Taylor Swift ban.
The owners loved the idea so much they decided to make it a permanent policy, said co-owner Chris Cinka.
“There really is too much good music out there to focus on Taylor Swift,” Cinka said. “We try to stay away from the mainstream stuff.”
Instead, customers can expect a variety of house music, a genre Cinka “has an affinity for” because he grew up in Detroit, he said.
Cinka opened the bar with co-owner James Urydki in summer 2022, with “a focus on the fundamentals” of timeless cocktails. The drinks menu offers signature cocktails and twists on classics, like the matcha colada, plus sake, beer, wine and alcohol for retail.
The luxurious drinks are created by a master mixologist, Cinka said.
“Our focus is to provide a unique space with exceptional cocktails and above all, exceptional service,” Cinka said.
Some Taylor Swift fans understand the haters are gonna hate, but others can’t shake it off.
“We get more requests for Taylor Swift with the poster up than we ever did before,” Cinka said. “I think it’s people giving us a little razz, nothing more outside that.”
Listen to the Block Club Chicago podcast: