Food in Chicago

Right now, the Chicago food scene is where it’s at. Some of the best chefs in America call Chicago home, as well as a wide variety of ethnic groups. The result? An abundance of eateries that comprise what is probably the country’s most diverse (and delicious) food scene.


Billy Goat Tavern: A legendary city spot where old media types would gather to drink and get the scoop >

Bistro 110: A surprisingly quaint French bistro half a block off Michigan Avenue >

Bongo Room: Dessert is brunch at this trendy spot >

Butterfly: An affordable, creative sushi menu at a BYOB in the West Loop >

Cafe BaBaReeba!: Any establishment with an exclamation point in its name automatically makes me dubious as to how fun it actually is, but this place is deserving of its punctuation >

*Cafe Iberico: Chicago’s best tapas restaurant >

Carnivale: A party atmosphere with tempting Nuevo Latino dishes >

*Chicago French Market: Thirty hand-picked gourmet local vendors to taste >

Foodlife: The future of food courts: upscale and seamless >

*Kuma’s Corner: Heavy metal replaces elevator music at this burger joint >

*La Unica Food Mart: A Cuban lunch counter in Rogers Park with a loyal clientele >

*m. henry: A hearty breakfast spot in Andersonville well worth the long wait >

*Nacional 27: “Eat, drink and dance” at one of Chicago’s best Latin restaurants >

Ras Dashen: An unassuming and authentic Ethiopian restaurant >

*Sayat Nova: Tasty Armenian food and an intimate restaurant off bustling Michigan Avenue >

Stella’s Diner: A diner on Broadway with some unexpected eats >

SushiSamba Rio: Some might say SushiSamba’s heyday is over, but one evening at the Rio spot would change their minds >

*Toast: A favorite brunch locale with creative versions of standard breakfast fare >

*Volare: One of Chicago’s best and most beloved Italian restaurants >

The Wiener’s Circle: A hot dog stand with attitude piled higher than toppings >

Cafés & Sweets

*Austrian Bakery: Perfection in a simple neighborhood bakery with traditional Austrian and European eats >

Canady Le Chocolatier: Rich chocolates and a taste of Chicago (read on to find out why) >

Intelligentsia: Chicago’s most famous cup >

Julius Meinl: An Austrian café/restaurant with an elegant cup of coffee and a menu of salads and sandwiches >

*More: The prettiest and most perfect cupcakes of them all >

Pasticceria Natalina: A Sicilian bakery with authentic cannoli and tea cakes >

Vosges Haut-Chocolate: Seriously haute chocolate >

Looking for more information?

Chicagoans commonly leave reviews of restaurants on Yelp and Metromix. Also check out Chicago Magazine for longer form articles about Chicago activities and TimeOut Chicago for quick, weekly restaurant and nightlife info.