Putting together a list of the "best" anything guarantees one thing: an argument. Whether it's movies, music, sports teams, foods, or even drinking establishments, people have their own ideas about what's "the best."

Nonetheless, another website recently published their list of the best bars in America, and you could be sitting in two of them after just short drive from the Rockford area.

An empty shot of a nightclub with no one inside
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beautiful brand new european restaurant in downtown
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There Are Lots Of Names For Places You Can Go For An Adult Beverage

The place, or places that you might favor for a glass of wine, spirits, or beer could call itself a "bar," but it may go with another name, like:

  • Lounge
  • Cocktail Lounge
  • Saloon
  • Tavern
  • Gin Mill
  • Inn
  • Barroom
  • Roadhouse
  • Tap Room
  • Ale House
  • Beer Joint
  • Joint
  • Drinking Establishment
  • Drinkery
  • Pub
  • Public House
  • Watering Hole
  • Cantina
  • Brew Pub
  • Bistro
  • Dive
  • Bucket of Blood

I could go on, but that's plenty.

Bar man making a delicious cocktail.
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Mixologist behind bar counter and drinks looking at the camera.
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To Get To The Best Bars Closest To Rockford, You Head Northeast Or Southeast

According to Mashed.com's piece, "The Absolute Best Bars In The U.S.," the ride to Milwaukee and "Bryant's Cocktail Lounge," is totally worth making.

Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
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Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
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Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
Bryant's Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
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Bryant's website even makes the claim of being the oldest cocktail lounge in Milwaukee, having opened their doors in 1938.

Mashed.com:

They are the bar that lays claim to having invented the Pink Squirrel, and every winter they open a special room dedicated to Wisconsin's beloved Tom & Jerry. They also do a brisk business in Old Fashioneds done Badger State-style, meaning made with brandy instead of whiskey.

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Head Southeast To Chicago For The Other Best Bar (Closest To Rockford) In The U.S. On Mashed's List

Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
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That spot would be Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, a wonderfully historic spot that opened in 1907, and just happened to be a hangout of this guy:

Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
Green Mill Cocktail Lounge, Facebook
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Not too many years after opening in 1907, The Green Mill added live music that focused on a new and up-and-coming style: Jazz. As a matter of fact, the Green Mill just happens to be America's oldest jazz club still in operation.

Mashed.com:

They don't have a menu, but Secret Chicago says they're well versed in all the classics, while the Chicago Bar Project recommends a martini, Manhattan, or Amaretto stone sour. Not familiar with this last drink? Liquor.com says it's a '70s throwback made from amaretto (of course), sour mix (ditto) and orange juice.

Check Out This Almost-Forgotten Town in Wisconsin That Still Has Old-World Charm

Blink and you might just drive by this gem and never know it.

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