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Best Trendy Restaurants In Chicago

Best Restaurants In Chicago

Chicago Restaurants Guide: Where to Eat

Often referred to as the food and drink capital of the world, there are some seriously great restaurants in Chicago.

As a Chicago local, I can attest that dining out and trying new cuisines is one of the best parts of being in the city. I absolutely love trying new places, and I have to say, its a great city to satisfy your inner foodie. In this article, Ill cover 33 of the best restaurants in Chicago so you dont have to stress about where to eat during your visit.

And while youre here, bookmark our guide to the 33 best things to do in Chicago!

Lets dive in!

Disclosure: Travel Lemming is an independent reader-supported blog. You can support us by purchasing via the affiliate links on this page, which may earn us commissions. Thank you!

Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse

Steakhouse | $$$$ | Website | | 266-8999

This is the original Gibsons location!

When it comes to all things steak and meat, Gibsons is the classic place to go in Chicago. Arrive hungry and ready to eat.

The meat-heavy menu includes steak done a variety of ways , as well as other local favorites like pork chops, roast chicken, ribs, and burgers. Drinks are also great. If for whatever reason you still have room for dessert at the end of your meal, snag a piece of cake, too.

As far as ambiance goes, the indoor dining room looks like a timeless steakhouse. Think warm tones with lots of wood. They even have a wall dedicated to autographed photos.

Dont Miss: Gibsons is right around the corner from the top of the Magnificent Mile and a 10-minute walk from the Museum of Contemporary Art. Check out our picks for the best museums in Chicago.

The 25 Most Unique Restaurant Concepts In Chicago

The most unique restaurant concepts in Chicago can be difficult to pin down, given the city is home to more than 7,000 restaurants. So if youre looking for inspiration for your own restaurant concept, youll find no shortage of ideas within Windy City walls.

But no one wants to scour a list of 7,000. So weve narrowed down the list to the 25 most unique restaurant concepts in Chicago, so you can either refine your own restaurant startup idea or modify your current concept to remain on trend.

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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. In January, I stayed at the Waldorf . 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 .

Jorge had Eggs Benedict on a croissant and said it was his favorite of all time . It is a bit pricey, but worth it for the incredible food. They also have a live band on Sundays, and the atmosphere is lovely.

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 excellent, and the drinks are well priced.

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Cheap Eat: Fatsos Last Stand

Trendy Chicago Gold Coast Restaurant Somerset Viceroy Hotel Review ...

Though known for icons like deep-dish pizza and a hot dog dragged through the garden, Chicago, a city surrounded by fresh water, has a long history of fried shrimp houses. While Fatsos isnt a dedicated shrimp shack like some others in town, it serves up incredible gigantic garlic-battered butterflied and fried shrimp so good you might think you were vacationing in the Gulf. Though Fatso’s is a shack, almost everything is made in-house, including macaroni and cheese featuring al dente cavatappi dripping with cheddar. Also on offer, char dogs and juicy cheeseburgers that channel the soul of the West Coasts In-N-Out Burger, making Fatsos one of Chicagos greatest cheap-eats destinations.

Go to: Fatsos Last Stand

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Best Seafood Restaurant In Chicago Shaws Crab House

Despite being landlocked, Chicago manages to pull off seafood pretty well, especially shellfish with many of these serving up daily fresh catches.

Also Try: Calumet Fisheries, GT Fish & Oyster

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Other Popular Restaurants In Chicago

  • Monteverde Italian restaurant
  • Blackbird Restaurant popular American restaurant for its fixed-price lunch menu
  • avec Meditteranean and Midwestern restaurant
  • Boka American cuisine with a garden patio
  • Smyth if youre looking to splurge on a fine dining experience, this high-end New American restaurant has tasting menus and wine pairings
  • The Loyalist also by Smyth, is The Loyalist thats a bi-level New American kitchen and bar
  • The Purple Pig Mediterranean restaurant that just reopened on Magnificent Mile known for its pork dishes
  • Mi Tocaya Antojería neighborhood Mexican restaurant located in Logan Square with small plates and tacos
  • Xoco Chef Rick Bayless owns several restaurants in Chicago and Xoco is the casual Mexican street food spot
  • The Publican American restaurant with seafood and pork entrees served on communal tables
  • Lula Cafe farm-to-table American restaurant in Logan Square
  • Oriole high-end restaurant in West Loop with an extended tasting menu by a Michelin star awarded Chef that includes caviar
  • Pequods Pizza one of the best spots for deep-dish pizza in Chicago. I had the little 7 pan cheese pizza right before a flight and it hit the spot! Good option if you need takeout.
  • Momotaro modern Japanese restaurant with sushi and robata
  • Smoque considered as Chicagos most acclaimed barbecue restaurant with good brisket
  • Acadia upscale New American restaurant inspired by coastal Maine that has two Michelin stars

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The Five Reservations To Book Now Including Three In The West Loop

If you thought the West Loop ran out of restaurant real estatethink again. September brought a handful of new spots to the neighborhood, including two stylish Restaurant Row tenants and a new tasting menu concept on the second floor of Time Out Market from S.K.Y. chef Stephen Gillanders. Youll also find a carb haven perfect for enjoying some sweater-weather pastries, plus a South Loop Italian favorite that got a revival from a well-known restaurant group.

The 11 Best Restaurants In Chicago

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Chicagos fine dining establishments are sure to find favor with discerning gourmands.

ByAlex Martin

With a consistent dedication to using local, seasonal ingredients, this refined list of the best restaurants in Chicagoguarantees a unique, delectable and eclectic dining experience.

With impressive skyline views, artistic flair and relentlessly innovative chefs, the difficulty in Chicago is not in finding a world-class restaurant, but choosing between them. The city has 22 Michelin-starred restaurants, including three two-star restaurants and one with three stars.

From the world-class Alinea to the ultra-modern Smyth & The Loyalist, Chicagos fine dining establishments are sure to find favor with discerning gourmands.

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The Best Places To Eat In Chicago

Visitors to Chicago find themselves faced with a thriving food scene. But for every best restaurant in Chicago with a one-of-a-kind atmosphere and sensational food, theres an equal amount of tourist bait. Since every trip is unique in duration, price range, and mobility, its important to plan wisely.

Thats why this list is here to help you discern whats a premier restaurant and whats just puffery. Whatever youre craving, be it deep-dish pizza, Indian, Greek, or Michelin-star dining, youll find a memorable place to eat.

The Chicago Hit List: The Best New Restaurants In Chicago

We checked out these new restaurantsand loved them.

Adrian Kane & John RingorNovember 9, 2022

The Hit List is where youll find our favorite new food and drink experiences in Chicago. We track new openings across the city, and then visit as many as we can. While this is by no means an exhaustive list of every good new spot, one thing you can always rely on is that well only include places that we have genuinely checked out.

Our goal is for this list to be as diverse as the city itselfinclusive of a wide range of cuisines, price points, neighborhoods, chefs and owners of all backgrounds, and the multifaceted communities within the industry. If you think we missed a great new place, we want to hear about it. Shoot us an email at chicago@theinfatuation.com

Whether youre looking for in-person dining, takeout, or delivery, The Hit List is here to help you find a great new spot to support. Read on to find your new favorites.

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Amazing Places To Eat In Chicago: A Locals Guide To The Best Spots

When Im searching for things to do in a new city, I love finding recommendations from locals. Who knows a city better than the people who live there, right?

This is why Im sharing my favorite places to eat in my hometown of Chicago. Everything from beautiful brunch spots to the best Chicago dinner to unique restaurants is on this list. If youre asking yourself, where should I go eat in Chicago? this list is it.

I continually update this list because theres always a new place to try. This city is huge, and there are so many great restaurants in Chicago that theres no way this list wont grow. I also have more posts on local favorites, and Ill list those below.

*This post has been updated to reflect Covid-19 closures or changes.

Smyth And The Loyalist

Bottoms Up: The 10

New American | $$$$ | Website | | 913-3773

Smyth and The Loyalist is a dual-concept restaurant located in the West Loop. The first floor, Smyth, is a tasting menu restaurant with an open kitchen and dining room concept. Just below Smyth is the restaurants bar and lounge, The Loyalist, which has a cozy, intimate atmosphere.

The burger is a fan favorite at The Loyalist, but both floors shine a light on seafood and farm-to-table cuisine. This is a great restaurant to book for special occasions.

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More Than A Steakhouse: Gt Prime

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

Modern Mexican: Mi Tocaya Antojeria

Innovation in Chicagos Mexican cooking scene has historically been confined to Rick Bayless restaurants and the occasional fast-food promotion. But Diana Davilas Mi Tocaya Antojeria in Logan Square is rooted in tradition like soulful rich moles but also punctuated by furiously creative touches.

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The 15 Best New Restaurants In Chicago Right Now

The hottest openings include a Cambodian kitchen, a Chinatown bar and and the return of several Chicago favorites.

You can never have too much of a good thing, which is why new restaurants are sprouting up every day all around Chicago. Trying to visit them all would be impossible, though, so were here to help by highlighting the hottest openings in recent months. The following places include Obelix, a modern bistro from the people behind one of the best French spots in town, and Khmai, a Rogers Park kitchen specializing in the cuisine of Cambodia. If you want to wet your whistle, head to Alpana Singhs eponymous restaurant for an extensive collection of wine or Nine Bar, a cocktail bar tucked away behind a Chinatown restaurant. Whatever you decide on, dont dawdle because reservations are going fast at the best new restaurants in Chicago right now.

RECOMMENDED: Discover more of the best restaurants in Chicago

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Chicagos Best Pork Chop: Tarantinos

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Since it opened 40 years ago, Pita Inn has become celebrated for its falafel, shawarma, kebabs, hummus, lentil soup, and, of course, its soft and pillowy pitas. But also dont sleep on the garlic sauce, which elevates anything it touches, from a pita sandwich to a plate of french fries. There are now four additional locations, plus a grocery store in Skokie.

Burts Place was the last restaurant founded by Burt Katz, the legendary Chicago pizza-maker who first added a ring of caramelized cheese around the crust Anthony Bourdain once said that Burts was the only Chicago-style pizza he ever loved. Before his death in 2016, Katz passed his recipes onto Jerry Petrow, his hand-picked successor, who continues to run Burts Place in the style of the master.

Stay nourished with sizzling-hot tofu soups courtesy of this Korean stalwart in Mount Prospect. Chodang dedicates much of its menu to comforting sundubu-jjigae served in stone pots. There are several variations, including seafood, beef, and pork, and diners choose their spice level. Each order arrives with a host of banchan and a raw egg to poach in the broth.

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Best Italian Beef In Chicago Als Beef

Another Chicago staple that could probably be its own food group, Italian beef is a go-to lunch in the loop. Just know how to order so you dont hold up the line. Theyll ask if you want it dry, wet, or dipped which refers to how juicy itll be and whether you want it topped with hot or sweet peppers .

Also Try: Mr. Beef, Tonys Italian Beef

Find Hip Eats In Wicker Park Bucktown And Logan Square

Theres no shortage of places to eat in Wicker Park, Bucktown, and Logan Square. And not just any places to eat. This area is known for their creative, eclectic vibes, so it makes sense that its home to some of the citys most talked-about spots. Youll find block after block of packed BYOB patios, creative fusion fare, and some of the hottest tables in town.

Check out some of the neighborhoods top spots to eat.

  • 90 Miles Cafe, Cubanos and mojitos are the go-to move in this colorful space
  • Longman & Eagle, elevated tavern fare and endless whiskey options
  • Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits, get a slice of that days pie flavors but hurry, they go fast
  • Big Star, street food-inspired tacos on one of the citys buzziest patios
  • Doves Luncheonette, a solid brunch menu of South-inspired Mexican cuisine in a retro space
  • Pub Royale, crave-worthy Indian fusion in a laid-back setting

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Summer House Santa Monica

New American, Italian | $$$ | Website | | 634-4100

Crispy chicken sandwich with snappy pickles and the Tropical Dreams cocktail

Light, airy, and wellsummer-y, is how Id describe the atmosphere at Summer House Santa Monica, which is located on N Halsted St in Lincoln Park. Considering the large atrium and ambiance of the summer-inspired dining room, this makes sense. On the wall, they even have a countdown to summer.

Most of the food is New American cuisine, with some Italian, Asian, and Mexican influences blended in. Each time Ive dined here, the food and drinks have never disappointed me. Everything on the menu is tasty, but I always get the crispy chicken sandwich. The truffle fries are also delicious!

Pro Tip: If you can, dine here in the summertime when the atrium is open. Its great!

Related Reading: Trying to decide when to visit the Windy City? Read our guide for the best time to visit Chicago.

Fried Shrimp: Haires Gulf Shrimp

Where To Find The Best Sushi in Chicago

Chicago is nowhere near an ocean and yet, fried shrimp shacks dot the landscape almost as much as Italian beef joints or deep-dish pizza parlors. Most places serve thick under-salted flour-laden clumps. Haires, however, purveys a light, golden crispy battered and butterflied shrimp so addictive, it can be eaten like popcorn. Though it needs no celebrity endorsement, Chance the Rapper has been spotted at this Southside gem.

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What Food Is Chicago Famous For

Chicago is famous for its deep dish pizza and Chicago-style hot dogs. However, Chicago is also known as a foodie destination, so there are a diverse range of cuisines to pick from, making it an all-around global food scene.

Are you a traveling foodie? Dont miss our guide to the best restaurants in Nashville& the best restaurants in London!

Thats it for our list of best restaurants! When it comes to food, Chicago does not disappoint. No matter your taste buds, youre sure to find something delicious.

Before you go, be sure to check out my guide to the best stuff to do in Chicago.

I hope Ive helped you find one of the best Chicago restaurants for you!

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