How to Make It
Cook the bacon in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until crisp, stirring occasionally, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Pour out all but 2 tablespoons of the fat from the pot; reserve the pot.
Add the onion and garlic to the reserved pot. Cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes.
Add the potatoes, broth, milk, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are very soft (almost falling apart) and the soup is slightly thickened, 30 to 40 minutes.
Serve warm topped with the Cheddar, chives, and reserved bacon.