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Best Places To Eat In Chicago

King Ranch Casserole At Texican

The Grid explores Chicago’s Chinatown: Best places to eat & more

Chef Kim Daltons mother was Korean and her dad a Swedish-Irish Bostonian, so naturally she decided to open a Tex-Mex restaurant in Chicago. Mexican night was popular at her critically acclaimed but short-lived restaurant Dodo, so she took it to the next level with a full-fledged Mexican-skewing spot. Instead of serving some fake chain-like vision of Tex-Mex, her fare, like the King Ranch casserole , a Mexican-lasagna of sorts, is rooted in authentic ingredients like El Milagro corn tortillas layered and tangy crema slathered over tender slivers of chicken enrobed in bubbly broiled cheddar cheese.

Things To Eat In Chicago

If youre wondering where to eat in Chicago, dont worry weve got you covered. Just make your way through this roundup of famous local dishes, only-in-Chicago specialties, and original dishes that got their start here. From upscale to casual, this list has something for every taste and budget. Heres a taste of Chicagos iconic eats and mouthwatering must-haves.

The Famous Kuma Burger At Kumas Corner

Only in Chicago could a joint that blasts heavy metal music, refuses to carry Budweiser, and stirs a controversy with the Catholic Church, be adored. Kumas Corner has become a destination in every food lovers pilgrimage.

Depending on what you order, your burger may include bourbon poached pear, roasted poblano peppers, avocado mash and other inventive ingredients.

Still, the one that most people return to is The Famous Kuma: 10 ounces of prime ground beef served with applewood smoked bacon, cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and red onion. A fried egg crowns this imposing patty, securing its epic status.

It gets better:

Though Kumas may have an edgy attitude, their heart is pure gold. They make sure to have a selection of vegetarian offerings, including an Impossible Burger. Every month, they pick a different charity to donate to. They also support local, homegrown producers and breweries, making it an extremely Chicago experience we love to share with our food tour guests.

Recommended Reading: Best Buffalo Wings In Chicago

Baby Back Ribs At Smoque Bbq

Nothing is more classic and representative of Chicago than a restaurant with a welcoming atmosphere and huge portions. Smoque is known for their family style tables and neighborhood kind of place atmosphere. The barbecue sauce is homemade so you cant go wrong with anything from their large variety of meat.

El Ideas / Boxcar Bbq

40 Amazing Places to Eat in Chicago: A Locals Guide to the ...

Southern | Barbecue | Price: $$$

2419 W. 14th St., Chicago | Map

  • Delivery available: No
  • Pickup available: Yes

Pausing from his usual ultracontemporary cuisine, chef/owner Phillip Foss launched Boxcar BBQ, a to-go menu of smoked meats, sides such as mac and cheese and braised bitter greens and more check the online menu to see the days featured dishes. Foss hopes to make Boxcar BBQ a brick-and-mortar operation.

Also Check: Taste Of Chicago 2021 Schedule

Trices Original Slab Bbq

Southern | Barbecue | Price: $

1918 E. 71st St., Chicago | Map

  • Delivery available: Yes
  • Pickup available: Yes

This family-run establishment in the South Shore neighborhood serves the juiciest rib tips and hot links in town. Cooked in a small aquarium-style smoker, they are infused with just the right amount of smoke and then served with a tangy sauce that lets the meat shine. Even the side dishes are given the attention they need. The fries are cut in-house, the slaw stays crunchy and the mixed greens provide an excellent foil to the meaty mains.

Bbq Chkn At Blaze Pizza

At Blaze, you can completely customize your pizza and have it cooked in under three minutes. The build-your-own pizza options offers unlimited toppings free of charge, so if youre really adventurous you can add every single topping on the menu. However you eat your pizza, youre sure to have it your way at Blaze.

Also Check: What Are The Dates For The Taste Of Chicago 2021

Life On Marz Community Club

The gist: The folks behind Bridgeport-based Marz Community Brewing Co. have ventured north to set up shop on the edge of Logan Square and Bucktown. Inspired by VFW halls, the aptly-titled project aims to foster community within a whimsical space festooned with bright colors and clean design. The food: While its all about Marz beers, CBD seltzers, nitro coffees, and canned booch, you can also snack on Makowskis sausages and hot dogs, housemade seven-spice nori snack mix, flavored jerky, meat sticks, and more. The cost: Snacks $5 – $11, drinks $4 – $6. How to book:Stop by for counter service.

Pot Pie At Pleasant House Bakery

Best Places to Eat in Chicago

Theres no reason to settle for frozen pot pies when you can stop by this Bridgeport gem, where Art and Chelsea Jackson whip up flaky, buttery pastry stuffed with thick hunks of all-natural beef, carrots, vegetables and herbs grown in their own local farm plot, all drizzled with a comforting ale gravy . Though the meat is excellent, the mushroom and kale pie, mixed with scallions and a white wine, herb and Parmesan sauce, is pretty soul-satisfying.

Recommended Reading: Taste Of Chicago Times

Places To Eat In Chicago For Brunch:

1. M.Henry Cafe We barely tried this place last February because I wanted to celebrate National Pancake Month. I was sad that I wouldnt make it out to my favorite pancake place in NYC , so I was determined to find a good spot at home. M.Henry was a pleasant surprise. Everything we had was delicious, and their pancakes were well decorated, fluffy, and fantastic.

2. This French-inspired gem is located inside the Waldorf Astoria in the gorgeous Gold Coast area. I stayed at the Waldorf in January . Honestly, I didnt expect much when Jorge and I went down for brunch, but I was hooked when we got our food.

The french toast was AMAZING and quickly became my second #1 next to the Banana Foster french toast from New Orleans Surreys Cafe .

2021UPDATE: Margeaux closed for a while due to covid. It returned with a new chef and a new menu. The new name is Brasserie. I havent visited since the revamp, so I cannot comment on the menu, but Im hoping my favorite french toasts are still around.

3. Gather This is a restaurant we tried after gathering the top recommendations from other locals. Gather came up numerous times, so we knew we had to give it a try. Dinner here is great, and the drinks are well priced.

We recently visited for brunch and loved it even more! Jorge ordered a bloody mary and an eggs benedict, and I had delicious french toast. In the summer, they have a beautiful outdoor patio.

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A Chefs’ Guide To Eating Out In Chicago

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    From architectural feats and notoriously loyal sports fans to public sculptures and hip-hop, Chicago is known for many things, and chief among them might be its iconic foods. Topping-heavy Chicago-style hot dogs, sky-high stuffed pizzas, piping-hot Italian-beef sandwiches, and a shot or three of Jeppsons Malört are certainly all worth enjoying when youre in town, but make sure you leave some room in your itinerary, and your belly, for exploring the lesser-known side of the citys food scene.

    Chi-Town has its fair share of celebrity chefs, and a handful of restaurants youve definitely heard ofRick Baylesss empire of Mexican restaurants is still going strong, and the far-reaching influence of Grant Achatzs molecular-gastronomy powerhouses Alinea, Next, and The Aviary cant be denied. But Chicago also boasts a rich and culinarily diverse food scene that reflects the fabric of the city. If you know where to look, youll find unexpected fusion cuisines world-class cocktail spots with stellar bar bites late-night joints that hand out cookies at midnight and holes-in-the-wall where you can get hearty, stick-to-your-ribs soups and stews to power you through any Chicago winter.

    Below, they point the way to some of their favorite places for late-night eats, drinks, breakfast and brunch, special-occasion meals, and, of course, iconic Chicago foods. Read on to find out where chefs eat in Chicago.

    Don’t Miss: Taste Of Chicago 2015 Schedule

    Grill City At Seafood City

    Asian | Filipino | Price: $

    5033 N. Elston Ave., Chicago | Map

    • Delivery available: Yes
    • Pickup available: Yes

    Grill City always seems to have flames flaring behind its display window. Usually theyre under meaty skewers, chicken or pork barbecue sticks, at the food court stall inside Filipino supermarket Seafood City. In the morning, though, look for longganisa, the fat, little, sweet pork sausages. Get the Grand Silog at breakfast with the defining garlic fried rice and eggs, plus your choice of two proteins, from grilled milkfish to pork or chicken tocino bacon.

    Cemita Atmica At Cemitas Puebla

    Places to Eat in Chicago

    Chicagos Mexican population is one of the largest in the country and their cuisine is woven tightly into the fabric of the food scene here. Thats why we go beyond the taco to honor the cemita, a typical sandwich made up of avocado, chipotle sauce, Oaxacan cheese, and meat inside a homemade sesame seed roll.

    No one does it better either than Cemitas Puebla, who put themselves on the map by creating the Cemitas Atómica. This monster sandwich blends pork loin, breaded milanesa and Krakus ham for a heart-stopping number.

    Insider Tip: You can try Cemitas Puebla, Kumas killer burgers and Do-Rites artisanal doughnuts in Chicago Food Planets Gateway to the West Loop Food Tour. Not only will you get to nosh on some of Chicagos most innovative dishes but youll also learn more about the neighborhood that started the citys dining revolution.

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    Fried Chicken With Mild Sauce From Harolds Chicken Shack

    Multiple locationsIt might make up the bulk of the meal, but this storied regional chains beautifully scalded fried chicken takes a backseat to its prized mild sauce, a tomato-tinged, tartly sweet, smoky, and ever-so-slightly spicy potion that lurks quietly in the back of every Chicagoans childhood food memories. Well take ours with a side of wings and fries, please and thank you.How to book: Dine-in, take-out, and delivery options vary by location.

    Best Places To Eat In Chicago For Brunch

    Chicago does brunch just right.

    Im a true-blue, native New Yorker and my love of my hometown will forbid me from admitting publicly that Chicagos brunch scene could ever rival New Yorks. That being said, I think most people can agree that Chicago knows how to kick brunchs ass.

    Whenever I come to the Third Coast to visit my friends, we always try to get our eat on. Heres a list of some of our favorite places to eat in Chicago for brunch:

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    The Best 10 Restaurants In Chicago Il

  • $$West Town

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    Food was excellent, but out server was possibly the worst I’ve ever had. He was actively hostile, impatient after 20 seconds of taking an order – bald white more

  • Outdoor dining

  • $$Logan Square

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    Nice atmosphere and good service. Good for fall and summer dining. Drinks are usually good! Menue is a little limiting so I suggest liking it before going take more

  • Outdoor dining

  • Locally owned & operatedLocally sourced ingredients

    Our server Brian was amazing so accommodating. We go at least 1-2 times a month. Have to at least get the focaccia with the ricotta/honey dip. Otherwise, you more

  • Outdoor dining

  • $$$Logan Square

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    so basically if you don’t come to eat here ur dumb. never experienced such a sweet & loving welcome at a restaurant in my life + foodgasms more

  • Outdoor dining

  • Wicker Park

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    Cute, great service! Very good cocktails and delicious food! We were very happy and want to return! Try the octopus is absolutely outstanding ! Ceviche & more

  • Delivery

  • Logan Square

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    Delicious food. We had squid, gyros, lamb, and froyo+baklava for dessert and it was all well prepared and flavorful. Friendly service – the waitress explained more

  • Outdoor dining

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  • Opened 3 months ago

  • My friends and I have already come here 3 times in the span of 2 weeks. I got one of my zabiha halal friends addicted and she tried coming a couple days ago more

    Jibarito At Papas Cache Sabroso

    Top 5 Must Eats in Chicago

    The jibarito is yet another original Chicago sandwich, created by our vibrant Puerto Rican community. Though it may look like a regular sandwich, there is one element that sets it apart:

    Theres no bread!

    Instead, crispy plantains hold together layers of meat, cheese, lettuce and tomato. The condiment of choice is garlic-flavored mayonnaise. Steak tends to be the typical filling, but we stan the chicken jibarito at Papas Cache Sabroso in the citys quintessential Boricua neighborhood, Humboldt Park.

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    New: A Place In Northeast

    Chinese | Casual | Price: $

    2105 S. Jefferson St., Floor 2, Chicago | Map

    • Delivery available: Yes
    • Pickup available: Yes

    This Northeastern Chinese cuisine specialist quietly debuted in the influential Chinatown Richland basement food court in 2020. Their beef pie has become the most popular item at A Place in Northeast. When you order the stuffed fat pancakes at their second location at the 88 Marketplace food court, you can watch the cooks hand make each order. Crisp yet chewy, bits of the northeast regions signature salty pickled vegetable punctuate the juicy filling.

    Cowboy Steak At Rpm Steak

    River NorthSteakhouses are to Chicago as red sauce Italian joints are to New York and izakaya are to Tokyotheyre simply embedded in the citys dining DNA. See what all the meaty fuss is about in true go-big-or-go-home fashion with this hulking 24-ounce bone-in rib-eye from upmarket River North chophouse RPM, dry-aged for 28 days, peppered, salted, and expertly seared for a pleasantly smoky bite and velvety pink center. Life doesnt get more *chefs kiss emoji* than that.

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    Drinks And A Show At The Green Mill

    UptownMake like modern day Scarface at this landmark cash-only jazz bar, known for incredible live music, stiff cocktails, and a deeply seedy history as Al Capones Prohibition-era headquarters. Rumor has it a network of tunnels still lies beneath the floorboards, connecting the watering hole to different former gangster hangouts all over the Northside. Its touristy, sure, but the spooky-swanky atmospherenot to mention the world-class nightly performancesis well worth waiting out the crowds.How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.

    More Than A Steakhouse: Gt Prime

    40 Amazing Places to Eat in Chicago: A Locals Guide to the ...

    Normally wed stay away from the meat-and-potatoes cliches that often define Chicago, but in the case of GT Prime, its mandatory. Thats because, though it bills itself as a steakhouse, GT Prime is really more like a fine-dining restaurant that just happens to also serve top-shelf meat. You wont find 2-pound hunks of rib eye instead, reasonable 4- to 12-ounce portions of top-class wagyu strip steak or grass-fed bison already cut for you are on offer. Youll supplement those manageable beef portions with a selection of elegant sides, soups, salads and appetizers.

    Go to: GT Prime

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