© David Nicolas

Chicago: Perennial

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Is Kim’s Korean kimchi stew, loaded with pork, hominy, and slippery rice cakes, the world’s coolest comfort food? Or would that title go instead to the pink supple slices of duck breast at Perennial, stacked between fluffy wedges of savory bread pudding? Designed with slim tree trunks and a tented ceiling, this Lincoln Park room radiates breezy glamour, and so does the food. Fresh from stints at some of Spain’s greatest avant-garde kitchens, young local chef Ryan Poli has the intelligence and restraint to distill cutting-edge concepts into relaxed, market-driven American fare. His pumpkin tart highlighted with date purée, his crisp-skinned striped bass in a smoky consommé of caramelized onion, and cheeky inside-out cheesecake are all major triumphs. Dinner for two $85.

50 Best New U.S. Restaurants

50 Best New U.S. Restaurants

Chicago: Perennial

Is Kim’s Korean kimchi stew, loaded with pork, hominy, and slippery rice cakes, the world’s coolest comfort food? Or would that title go instead to the pink supple slices of duck breast at Perennial, stacked between fluffy wedges of savory bread pudding? Designed with slim tree trunks and a tented ceiling, this Lincoln Park room radiates breezy glamour, and so does the food. Fresh from stints at some of Spain’s greatest avant-garde kitchens, young local chef Ryan Poli has the intelligence and restraint to distill cutting-edge concepts into relaxed, market-driven American fare. His pumpkin tart highlighted with date purée, his crisp-skinned striped bass in a smoky consommé of caramelized onion, and cheeky inside-out cheesecake are all major triumphs. Dinner for two $85.

50 Best New U.S. Restaurants

© David Nicolas

50 Best New U.S. Restaurants

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