Friday, December 24, 2004


Low Chicago and High Chicago - Stud Poker Variant

We played a lot of Low Chicago and High Chicago in our home games back when I had an apartment in North Dallas. Chicago poker is simply seven card stud with a couple of minor variations. In High Chicago, the highest spade in the hole splits the pot with the winner of the hand. In Low Chicago, the lowest spade in the hole splits the pot with the winner.

It's a pretty common and pretty simple variation on 7 card stud, and it's a lot of fun, especially when you're catching the ace of spades or the 2 of spades. In fact, if you're a rock, then you might consider waiting until you have a high or low spade in the hole before even playing, although most of the home games I've played in haven't been very tight at all. Which makes this strategy even better.

Just to sum up the strategy for Low Chicago and High Chicago--if you don't catch a spade when the cards are dealt, fold it up. Even if you wind up with the best hand, you'll still wind up splitting the pot with the person who has the spade. And don't think you'll play it through to the end, catching the spade on the last 'down and dirty' card. The odds just aren't good enough for you to make and call all those bets during the betting rounds.

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