As the third largest metropolis in the U.S., Chicago has countless restaurant options. Which begs the question: Which eateries can’t be missed?
Well, we’ve got you covered in terms of all things culinary in the Windy City. After some stomach-filling research, we’ve whittled things down to the best ten in this Midwest mecca of food. These restaurants make a trip to Chicago worth it in their own right, offering some of the best food in the country.
Husband and wife team, Hsing Chen (former French laundry pastry chef) and Doug Psaltis (former RPM executive chef) joined forces to open Andros Taverna, an incredible Greek restaurant. Located in Logan Square, the restaurant is spacious and bustling with diners. Andros has delicious shareable plates, perfect for any setting.
Griddled Cypriot Halloumi: If you’re a cheese connoisseur, this one is for you…and we are sure it won’t disappoint.
Octopus: Tender and a little charred with meaty tentacles soaking in lemon and olive oil.
Prawn Saganaki: Prawns bathing in rich, delicious, tomato sauce with bits of feta and dill. Pair it with soft sesame village bread or the fluffy pita bread that is hand-stretched and made to order.
Turbot: Turbot Tuesday showcases some of the freshest sea catches to arrive at Andros for the week. Andros is determined to change the seafood industry through sustainability and by purchasing from local small boat suppliers and not large, conglomerate fishing operations. Chef Doug utilizes the entire fish with his menu and dishes. By purchasing and utilizing the whole fish, Andros will either butcher the fish in-house, serve the dish whole, or use what remains of the fish to create flavorful stock or sauces.
Baklava Froyo: This frozen yogurt is topped with crispy baklava crumbles, pistachio sauce, and a drizzle of raw local honey. It has the perfect amount of sweetness and is truly amazing.
Top Chef winner, Joe Flamm created a masterpiece when he created Rose Mary. The food is mostly Croatian, but many dishes have Italian influences. From great service to the considerate coursing (only dishes that complement each other arrive at the same time), you’ll be frustrated that you don’t have room to try everything on the menu.
Stracciatella: This dish changes seasonally, it may come with strawberries or with an apple mostarda or with something completely different. But one thing that remains the same is the fluffy lepinja (Balkan flatbread) it’s served with.
Coal Roasted Beets: A great appetizer to begin with, the beets are served with kajmak (cheese), pistachio, and honey.
Baby Octopus ‘Peka Style’: The octopus is cooked low and slow in a metal dish over an open fire. This makes it, and the potatoes it is served with, very tender and flavorful with garlic and pepper sauce.
Crni: This creamy squid ink risotto is in rich lobster stock and topped with confit squid.
Tortellini Djuvec: Delicious pasta with red pepper, eggplant, zucchini, Parmigiano, and pine nuts.
Porcini Agnolotti: Rich pasta with Parmigiano, brown butter, and fresh shaved white truffle.
Pistachio Gelato: End the evening on a light but refreshing note with this pistachio gelato drizzled with honey.
This is the kind of spot where you’ll want to order everything, and you’ll be disappointed by nothing. The food here is rich and flavorful. Etta has also been labeled as Bib Gourmand in the Michelin Guide for good quality food and good value cooking.
Fire Baked Focaccia: Order the one with honey-sweetened ricotta.
Ricotta Pillows: These ricotta-filled dumplings are drenched in a light truffle sauce.
Burrata: This drool-worthy burrata is served with red onion jam, kabocha (squash), pear, pistachio, arugula, and basil.
Garganelli Pasta: This not-to-miss pasta is marinated in heirloom cherry tomatoes,
Ricotta Agnolotti Pasta: Another rich and delicious house-made pasta with butter-poached lobster, smoked pumpkin, shiitake, and pepita.
Wild Mushroom Pizza: There are usually six pizzas on the menu – five staples and a seasonal option. All are tasty and all come with a chewy, bubbly crust, but the wild mushroom (a staple) is a must. It comes with melted onions, goat cheese, black truffle, and raclette (cheese).
A Bib Gourmand in the Michelin guide, Perilla’s buzzy yet cozy Korean American street fare setting offers a variety of dishes suitable for all types of diners (read as: vegetarians as well).
Kimchi Pancake: There are three types of pancakes; scallion, kimchi, and seafood. All are crispy and light.
Blistered Shishito Peppers: These peppers are charred, come with hazelnuts and fried anchovies, and have a sweet sauce that gives the spice a good balance.
Steamed Egg: Perilla’s is a large bowl of light and fluffy steamed eggs, with dashi, green onion, and sesame.
Zazas Pizzeria offers a selection of nine specialty New York-style pizzas. Pizzas are offered by the slice for lunch and whole pies for dinner. All pizzas are made with a brushed crust containing
White Pie: Topped with garlic,
Truffle Mushroom Pie: Shiitake mushrooms, rosemary, garlic truffle cream, goat cheese, and sea salt.
Hot Soppressata Pie: A delicious, sweet, and spicy pizza topped with fennel oil, hot honey, chili flakes, and Parmigiano.
Yuzu is known for its massive, colorful, and artistic sushi rolls. They look cool and taste good.
Takoyaki: Octopus doughballs topped with sweet mayo, sweet soy sauce, bonito flakes, and seasoned nori. Sounds weird but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it!
Dragon Roll: With shrimp tempura, avocado, and unagi. It’s presented with a dragon drawn out of colored spicy mayo.
Udon Noodle Soup: The perfect noodle texture with belly-warming broth and mixed tempura.
Alla Vita has it all, a gorgeous dining room and delicious food. The restaurant is decorated with hanging plants, string lights, and an overhead art installation.
Wood-Fired Bread: This crusty loaf is topped with taleggio, orange blossom honey, and black pepper.
Pizza: There are around five pizza options, and we recommend the Margherita with tomato sauce, Fior di latte, and basil or the truffle mushroom with black truffle, caramelized onion, and taleggio. A bonus is that the wood-fired crust is chewy.
Vodka Rigatoni: It is creamy, spicy, and al dente.
Mafaldine: Homemade pasta with prawns, calamari, Calabrian chili, and garlic breadcrumbs.
Lasagna: This savory dish consists of wild mushroom Bolognese and fontina, layered with fresh pasta and a rich marinara sauce.
La Josie has three full bars and a rooftop deck and serves great Mexican food and
Guacamole: Made with fresh Michoacán avocados and served with corn & flour tortilla chips.
Elote: Oven-roasted corn, pico de gallo, roasted habanero, cilantro, and elote salt.
Mango Ceviche: Fresh Hawaiian yellowfin ahi tuna, mango leche de tigre, jicama, red onion, chile Fresno, grilled mango, avocado, habanero salt, and cilantro.
Pescado a la Parilla Tacos: Grilled, citrus and garlic marinated fresh Baja striped bass, chile pasilla, Morita salsa, grilled mango, jicama, Fresno chile, and onion-cilantro slaw.
The Publican specializes in beer, pork, and oysters. The Publican gives off all the European beer hall vibes with its high ceilings, wood furnishings, and communal tables. The Publican is heavy on the meats, but try to include a little bit of seafood and veggies in your order.
Mussels: A stone pot full of mussels bathing in a buttery, mouth-watering broth.
Fries with Fried Egg: Pretty self-explanatory.
Duck Hearts: Sounds scary but try it. They come with mushrooms, ricotta, and some toasted bread.
Whole Chicken with Frites: A menu staple – it’s a juicy, whole bird over a bed of fries.
Kasama, a Filipino restaurant in Ukrainian Village, is a superb go-to spot for anything from pastries to meats.
Filipino BBQ Platter: These ribs so easily and effortlessly fall off the bone. The platter comes with smoky longanisa (Filipino sweet sausage), giardiniera mustard, and thick slices of toasted bread.
Chicken Adobo: Sweet and tangy chicken, pickled papaya, and garlicky rice… what more could you ask for?
Lumpia: It would almost be a sin to dine at a Filipino restaurant and not try their lumpia. The pork-filled lumpia comes with a sweet chili sauce.
Berry Creme Fraiche Cheesecake: This is possibly the lightest cheesecake you’ll ever have. It has a soft graham crust and is topped with a light berry sauce.
Hungry? Us too. If you haven’t been to Chi-Town or it’s been a long time, think about a return trip. The city has a lot going for it, including a vibrant culinary landscape.
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