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Best River North Restaurants Chicago

The Tastiest Restaurants In River North Chicago

New policies at Chicago’s Steak 48 restaurant facing criticism

River North is a beautiful district that is essentially the heartthrob of art. There are numerous converted warehouses that house studios and galleries for creators. If you are visiting, and want to experience the culinary side of the district, here are some great river north restaurants to try out.

145 North Dearborn Street IL 60602 384-1242

Amy and Clodagh Lawless are creating an empire of good restaurants in Chicago, and their latest addition of The Dearborn delivers on their American food. The spot might be fairly new, but it has been strategically positioned in a neighborhood that will have you feeling as though you grew up eating from it. Their menu features a lineup of fresh seafood and variations of the same. If you want a classic taste of America, you can always enjoy the burgers and steak that will remind you why you will travel across the country for this taste. As for drinks, adults can enjoy the beer on tap that has different flavors to choose from. There is an in-house cocktail specialist who will cater to all your needs. The place is child-friendly thanks to their well-arranged kiddies menu so you can take your family for an outfit out.

110 W. Illinois Chicago, IL 60654 644-0500

449 North Clark Street 723-2131

118 W Grand Ave, Chicago, Il 60654 222-9700

353 W. Hubbard St Chicago, IL 60654 464-0500

401 N Franklin St Chicago, IL 60654 285-2830

226 W Kinzie Ave Chicago, IL, 60654 796-3316

519 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654312-284-1377

Best For Global Travelers: Tanta Chicago

Tanta Chicago

Whether you like coffee, adult beverages, or fresh-squeezed juice, Beatrix offers something for everyone in four different Chicagoland locations, including one in River North. This is a classic Chicago neighborhood meeting place, and its designed for you to linger with friends or family for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. Rich Melman, the founder of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, works with chefs and partners John Chiakulas, Rita Dever, and Susan Weaver to create nutritious yet tasty menu possibilities as well as bakery items. The coffee comes from Chicago roasters Intelligentsia, and Metric, and the baristas are encouraged to make their own unique creations.

Excellent Restaurants For Large Group Dining In Chicago

When you think about large food orders, unfavorable reservation policies, and splitting the bill six ways or more, you will realize that dining as a group is not easy at all. But a group dinner has the potential of being an unforgettable night out when you get the right restaurant. There are great spots all over Chicago you can hang out with friends and eat quality food without feeling like the odd ones out. These restaurants are trying to make large group dining less stressful. From affordable to high-end dining establishments, here are the best restaurants for groups in Chicago.

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Best Restaurants In River North Chicago

  • Bavettes Bar & Boeuf
  • From its sultry jazz soundtrack to its swanky speakeasy ambiance, all I can say of Bavettes Bar and Boeuf is that it is simply marvelous.

    Stepping in Bavettes is akin to stepping into a steakhouse in France itself. After a warm welcome by the hostess, the ornate, dimly lit wood and the brick sets are sure to catch your eye.

    A magical blend of fine dining and unabashed fun, I was more than ready to try their signature dry-aged bone-in rib-eye steak for my lunch and was not disappointed.

    The meat was tender and flavorful. Bavettes opens its doors to large parties, so be sure to bring your friends and family along.

    Having visited their other branches, RPM Seafood and RPM Steak, I could not wait to try out RPM Italian.

    Owned by celebrity couple Bill and Giuliana Rancic, the joint is very modern and, as you would expect, has all the markings of an Italian spirit.

    RPM has multiple bars inside, from which I grabbed a Paloma Swizzle during their 4 pm to 6 pm Happy Hour.

    In addition to the drink, I ordered their featured special, Lobster Fra Diavolo served with Roasted Tomato, Calabrian Chili, and washed it down with a Brandy.

    The restaurant is strictly for fine dining and is the perfect place to bring your date to an intimate dinner.

    Another key selling point is the picturesque rooftop view, which has made the joint a local Chicago favorite.

    Best For Latin Flavor: Topolobampo

    Theory is an upscale sports lounge which offers up American comfort ...

    Go big and enjoy The Perfect Seven tasting menu, which highlights the best Topolobampo has to offer over seven unique and dynamic courses. The thematic courses for this flavorful tasting menu change seasonally to ensure freshness and to keep you coming back for more. Taste Mexican flavors with a classy twist at this repeatedly Michelin-starred haven, the crown jewel of Rick Bayless since 1989, alongside neighboring Frontera Grill. Jump in on the mole tasting, wine pairings, and agave pairings.

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    The Top 7 Restaurants In River North Chicago

    The real heart of Chicago beats in the neighborhoods, and River North, on the Windy Citys north side, is a food lovers mecca. Whether youre looking for a romantic night out or you want a restaurant the whole family can enjoy, this region north of the Chicago River has you covered. Here are our top picks for the best restaurants in this urban community.

    Best For An Artistic Experience: Marisol

    is bright, sleek, and full of colorful art that pops, which makes sense given its location inside the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. The dinner menu features seasonal ingredients that are fresh and aesthetically pleasing. Burrata with Michigan peaches, Kampachi Crudo, duck, quail, squid rigatoni, and arctic char have all been featured on past menus. Enjoy drinks from a full bar, including dessert wine, amaro, cocktails, and wine. If you attend an MCA Chicago special event, you can enjoy a three-course prix-fixe menu at Marisol.

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    River North Restaurants In Chicago For Your Chic Rehearsal Dinner

    River North attracts locals and tourists alike with its iconic architecture, hip art galleries, and dynamic nightlife. This bygone-warehouse district now ranks as Chicagos most fashionable, trend-setting neighborhood complete with converted lofts and sleek skyscrapers. Dinner at any of the eclectic mix of stylish and best restaurants in River North Chicago often includes dramatic views of the Chicago skyline, as well as lively people watching. With so many chic settings, its no wonder couples love to host their rehearsal dinners in this vibrant neighborhood.

    While rehearsal dinners are an opportunity to run through the wedding timeline and practice walking down the aisle, they are also a chance to connect with your family and closest friends before the wedding day. Its a time for intimate talks, shared laughs, and plenty of walks down memory lane. And of course, a great celebration deserves a great venue. Weve searched PartySlate to bring you 13 of the best River North restaurants in Chicago for your stylish rehearsal dinner. They say practice makes perfect, but it also makes for a great excuse to celebrate.

    Bar Mar By Jose Andres

    SafeHouse Chicago opens in River North

    120 N Upper Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606 | Website

    Bar Mar by Jose Andres is the place to go for fresh oysters, lobster rolls and other seafood classics. In fact, the menu is mostly fish and seafood, topped off by a nice selection of wines. The dining room features floor-to-ceiling windows for enjoying the views.

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    Best Hot Dogs: Portillo’s

    100 W Ontario StFrom a perfectly steamed bun to bright, crunchy, and wholly Chicago-approved accoutrements , the Jumbo Hot Dog, with its perfect meat-to-bun ratio, at this locally based chain hits all the right notes. Team it with a chocolate cake shake and crinkle-cut fries for the full Portillos effect.

    South Branch Tavern & Grille

    Dine inside or outside in the shade of the Willis Tower at this fancy but-not-too-fancy riverside restaurant. South Branch’s large menu has something for everyone with a variety of sandwiches and small plates as well as steak and fish entrees. Simple but refined cocktails join a solid beer list for the grown-ups.

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    Porter Kitchen & Deck

    150 N Riverside Plaza, Chicago, IL 60606 | Website

    Porter Kitchen & Deck serves up lunch, dinner, and drinks from its location right on the Chicago River. Expect to find American cuisine on the menu, including seafood, sandwiches, salads and more. Youll also find a drink menu including wine, cocktails, and craft beer. The restaurant is typically open every day of the week but Sunday.

    Best Outdoor Seating: River Roast

    Avli River North Restaurant in Chicago

    315 N LaSalle StTheres no such thing as a “bad” patio in Chicago, but there is such a thing as the “best,” and the sweeping riverside terrace at River Roast just might be it. Take in killer cityscape views while throwing back fresh oysters, impossibly juicy whole roasted chicken, and “Definitely Not Malort” shots made with dry-hopped Letherbee gin steeped in gentian root, chamomile, and wormwood.

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    Best For Seafood: Gt Fish & Oyster

    GT Fish & Oyster, Jeff Khauck, Anthony Tahlier, & Eric Kleinberg

    Earning a Bib Gourmand in the Michelin Guide for its excellent food offered at an affordable price, GT Fish & Oyster has been carefully chosen by Michelins inspectors. Grab a seat at the contemporary raw bar and swallow oysters. Dine on dishes that are meant for sharing like the tuna crudo, green tea soba noodles, or deviled eggs with smoked salmon. Indulge in something from the extensive cocktail, beer, or wine list or try the Drunken Snapper sake from Kyoto, Japan. The experts behind the bar can help you pair a drink with your meal. You really cant go wrong, no matter what you choose, at this modern seafood sanctuary.

    Best Czech: Bohemian House

    11 W Illinois StExecutive Chef Jimmy Papadopoulos inventive menu layers authentic Central European flavors with bold, modern presentations, like the grilled chicken paprikash, the roasted duck leg with sweet and sour cabbage, and the supremely hearty bacon buns — pillowy dinner rolls lacquered with bacon fat, stuffed with bacon chunks, and paired with plum sauce and pickles. And its not bad for brunch, either the egg-topped, open-faced pork schnitzel sandwich will trigger Pavlovian salivation at first sight.

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    The Best Restaurants In River North

    Theres a lot going on in this neighborhood, and deciding on a restaurant can be tough. This is where you should be eating.

    River North is a perplexing place:You love it.You hate it.The restaurants are great.The restaurants are annoying.Its great for people-watching.These people are the worst.

    This neighborhood is full of contradictionsit has a lot of stressed-out businesspeople and cheerfully drunk tourists, along with the best views of the river and the worst smells in the city. River North also has some of our favorite restaurants in Chicago. So when you cant decide where to eat in between all the fancy steakhouses, Italian beef joints, and hyped-up party spots, this guide is here to help.

    Best For Families: Lou Malnatis Pizzeria

    2 People Shot Near Restaurant In River North

    Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria River North

    Everyone knows that Chicagoans love their deep-dish pizza, and Lou Malnatis in River North is one of the best joints to grab a pie. Bring your family to this casual hot spot and order pasta, salad, soup, sandwiches, or stick with the cheesy classic favorite. If you want to bring a frozen pie home, pop into the restaurant and buy one at the host stand. We recommend pre-ordering your pizza ahead of time, and then when you arrive, check in with the hostess and get seated close to your quoted time slot. This way, you wont have to wait in line at this popular pizzeria. Outside seating is also available during nicer weather, and its a perfect way to dine with rollicking kids.

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    Best Restaurants On The River: Chicago River Dining For Families

    Chicago is known as The Third Coast because of its gorgeous Lake Michigan skyline, but another body of water brings beauty to the city as well. The Chicago River and the Riverwalk that has developed along its banks has become a destination for tourists and locals alike, especially in the warm summer months when visitors can dine outside. Operable drawbridges and CTA trains that cross the river add extra interest to the area for kids.

    Some of the best restaurants on the river in Chicago operate only from April or May through October, while others are year-round fixtures. They become destinations during major events like the dyeing of the Chicago River and the Chicago Marathon, but they’re truly relaxing at any time of year. Try to make a reservation at one of these top-notch riverfront restaurants in Chicago for the best results!

    For more tips on dining out with kids in Chicago, check out our Kid-Friendly Chicago Restaurants Guide.

    Best Asian Fusion: Sunda

    110 W Illinois StBilly Dec and the Rockit Ranch Productions crews whimsical menu offers some seriously interesting eats, like barbecued octopus in a spicy gochujang sauce or beef lollipops — sliced NY strip steak wrapped lemongrass with ginger citrus soy glaze. Definitely start with the crispy Brussels sprouts, and definitely end with the Sunda Sundae, a monstrous mix of avocado, sweet corn & cheddar, and ube-macapuno ice creams with red mung beans, jackfruit, coconut gel, sweetened condensed milk, fresh berries, and coconut. What happens in between is up to you.

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    Best Sandwich: Mr Beef

    666 N Orleans StGrungy and unassuming, this small shop has been serving juicy Italian beef sammies with house giardiniera to the Downtown crowd for more than 30 years. Its simply a Chicago classic.

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    Kailley Lindman is a contributing writer for Thrillist Chicago, as well as a food blogger, bacon enthusiast, and devout user of the Oxford comma. Follow her at @KailleysKitchen.

    • Cookie Settings

    The 5 Best Restaurants To Visit In River North

    Celeste, Chicago

    Lets face it: there are endless options for top-notch restaurants in Chicago. But if we had to pick the crème de la crème of River North, heres where wed start. From award-winning Chefs using the highest quality ingredients to iconic locations with rich histories, these restaurants certainly take the cake. These are the 5 best restaurants in River North.

    Looking for a romantic twist on a traditional steakhouse? Bavettes Bar & Boeuf boasts a French flair without the formality, mixing upscale dining with unabashed fun. Popular dishes at this restaurant in River North include Truffle Mac and Cheese, Dry Aged Ribeye, Steak Frites, and Dark Chocolate Pie. Thirsty? Order one of their classic cocktails or browse their well-curated international wine list. Make your reservations here.

    Peruvian cuisine in Chicago? Yes, please! This stylish restaurant offers an authentic experience with Chef Gaston Acrurio describing it as, traveling, celebrating, sharing the flavors and joys of Peru while having fun with respect and gratitude to the Earth. Get reservations in here. And be sure to order favorites like Chaufa Aeropuerto, Pollo a La Brasa, Ahi Tuna Ceviche, and Grilled Octopus.

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    New Restaurants In River North To Try

    With the city opening back up and people becoming more positive of our future, Chicagos dining scene has also been pumping and going! Among all the Happy Hours and reopenings, there are actually a few new restaurants in River North we want to point you toward this time! May it be ethnic cuisine or a pampering date with your girlfriend, or even just a quick work lunch, we hope one of these places will become your new favorite!

    500 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654

    Pigtail, a combination of Spanish jamón and the suffix in cocktail, is the new superstar in Chicagos speakeasy scene. After months of anticipation, Pigtail is officially open as of Friday, Oct. 15th! Designed by renowned Barcelona-based firm, Capella Garcia, guests will leave behind the colorful Jaleo space and walk downstairs to enter the sultry basement lounge, which features a color palette of blacks and pinks. Playful pig design elements are found throughout the space, including curly pigtails on the walls and flying pigs on the mirrors.

    613 N Wells St, Chicago, IL 60654

    Third-generation restaurateur Adolfo Garcia is bringing his modern take on the old-school 1990s martini bar to River North in mid-October 2021.

    Best Steakhouse: Rpm Steak

    66 W Kinzie StRiver North is teeming with great steakhouses, but its the modern, glamorous concept from the Melmans, Rancics, and executive chef Doug Psaltis that shines the brightest. Between masterfully balanced classic cocktails and virtually every cut of meat under the sun, youll want for nothing, save for, perhaps, another order of the bourbon-vanilla bean glazed bacon appetizer and a doggy bag for the precious remnants of whatever behemoth dry-aged steak did you in.

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