I enjoyed this week’s write-up of the Hopleaf, a neighborhood favorite [“On Tap at the Hopleaf,” Section Two, September 12]. Unfortunately, in calling it an “Andersonville beer bar,” the Reader puts it in the wrong neighborhood.
Everyone wants to think they’re in Andersonville, yet on every map I’ve seen this trendy fragment of Edgewater begins at Foster and ends at Bryn Mawr. The Hopleaf, at 5148 N. Clark? That’s Uptown. Same with La Donna and Tokyo Marina, two other outstanding Uptown restaurants on your Andersonville list. (Whatever you do, please don’t ever call that stretch of Clark “South Foster,” as Uptown-phobic developers on the 5100 block are trying to do. It’s bad enough that they foist their ugly buildings on us. Must they foist ugly, revisionist names too?)
It’s a shame to see the Reader fall for the hooey put out by so many real estate agents, businesses, and other Andersonville pretenders, all in denial that they live either in Edgewater (not trendy enough), Ravenswood (too obscure), or Uptown (too black).
Edgewater (and proud of it!)
Ulysses Smith replies:
According to a 1978 map produced by the city’s planning department, the boundaries of Andersonville are Foster to the south, Clark to the east, Bryn Mawr to the north, and Ravenswood to the west. The north boundary of Uptown is Foster, the west Clark. The Hopleaf, La Donna, and Tokyo Marina, which are all on the west side of Clark, are actually in Ravenswood. As a cultural entity, however, Andersonville spills outside its borders, and in the context of my story that seemed more relevant.