Restaurants in Chicago
Chicago restaurants reflect the city’s diversity and richness: deep-dish pizza, hot dogs piled high with fixins’, restaurants helmed by celebrity chefs, and entire neighborhoods dedicated to certain culinary delights, like Greektown and Chinatown. For an unmatched view of the Chicago waterfront, try Riva on the Navy Pier. Their menu includes classic seafood dishes like oysters, lobster corn bisque and crab cakes, as well as a selection of steaks and a number of modern twists on traditional dishes. The food is matched only by the incredible view of Chicago’s skyline.
The Michelin-starred Allium Chicago, a foodie favorite, is a classically American dining experience for a classically American city – with a farm-to-table twist. The establishment serves up menus inspired by Chicago’s local markets – seasonal vegetables and cheeses, an assortment of local meats, and Chicago classics like the Chicago Style Hot Dog with “homemade everything.” Chicago restaurants are also indebted to the lunch counter scene of the 1960s; for a taste of that old vibe, visit Paul Kahan’s Blackbird Dining Room. This Chicago restaurant merges minimalism with farm-fresh dining for an unforgettable experience.
Serving contemporary American cuisine, this River North restaurant and wine bar focuses on seasonal ingredients and wine pairing. Known as The Tavern, the dining room boasts light wood floors, exposed air ducts, and a red, zinc-top oval bar.
After rising to fame in the Ritz-Carlton kitchen, James Beard Award winner Sarah Stegner and her co-chef George Bumbaris opened this New American restaurant in Northbrook, about 30 minutes outside Chicago.
Built from a 1890s print shop, this West Loop restaurant celebrates both the traditional and contemporary. Inside the dining room, glass encased chandeliers hang above the custom Art Nouveau tile floor, while Windy City memorabilia covers the walls and vintage stemware sits on each table.
Ideal for group dining in Lakeview, Coobah is a lively two-room space with loud Latin music, closely packed tables, and a quirky color palette that pairs rust orange and sky blue hues.
Opened in 1983, Café Selmarie began as a small bakery specializing in European-style cakes, pastries, and breads. Now, the Lincoln Square spot is a full-service café complete with an espresso bar, although the baked goods are still a highlight.
Golden sconces, crisp white linens, and dark wood furniture create a romantic setting for pre-theater patrons at this upscale restaurant in the Palmer House Hilton.
Chef and television personality Rick Bayless opened this Near North Side restaurant next door to his more casual Frontera Grill back in 1989, introducing the Windy City to the concept of fine Mexican dining.
Endorsed by Food & Wine, USA Today and Esquire and even frequented by President Obama, chef Michael Kornick’s Near North Side restaurant continues to be a favorite year after year.
Located in Bucktown, Caffé De Luca offers authentic Italian fare in a setting that resembles a Tuscan alleyway thanks to its high ceilings, rust-colored walls, and overhead clotheslines hung with vintage dresses.
The Burger: Duchamp is almost too upscale to deserve mention on this list, except for the fact that in a city famed for its love of red meat, this one is a whopper.
Situated inside Chicago’s Peninsula hotel, Avenues is a feast for the senses, combining flavorful contemporary cuisine with a lush, elegant atmosphere.
In the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park's signature restaurant, the evocative design incorporates mahogany walls, red and orange linens, clean-lined furniture, and a date-worthy, noodle house-inspired bar area with sari-inlaid tables.
Marked by a burgundy awning and neon beer signs on the outside, this Irving Park eatery specializes in Mexican fare from the southern state of Oaxaca. Inside, hanging plants and plastic tablecloths emphasis the casualness of Taqueria La Oaxaqueña.
Established in Lincoln Park in 1977, Potbelly began as an antique store that just happened to serve sandwiches to hungry customers. Soon, the shop evolved into a café and has now expanded to become a 200-store franchise.