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
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.
Sunda New Asian
110 W. Illinois Chicago, IL 60654
As the name states, this is the one restaurant you need to visit if you want to experience the best of South Asia. If you want food from the Philippines to Thailand and even China, you can get it all under one roof at Sunda. The food is made using the original recipes from the countries of origin and ensures the ingredients used are as fresh and authentic as possible. You will experience sushi as if you are tasting it for the first time. From the flavorful chow and lo meins to the pad Thai, there is nothing Chinese you will miss here. We loved their lemongrass beef lollipops, a dish consisting of sliced New York steak that is wrapped in the citrusy lemongrass and served with a ginger, orange and soy glaze. They also have speciality cocktails for a perfect finish to a great entree.
449 North Clark Street
Mexican food comes in plenty at Xoco. The name Xoco might translate to ”little sister” in Spanish, but there is nothing little about the flavor, variety and amount of food they serve up in this restaurant. Specializing in Latin dishes, the restaurant delivers Mexican, Cuban and even Dominican food. The tortillas are tasty, and the dipping sauces as hot as your level can handle. The sides are great here, case in point the salsa that packs a punch with their pickled jalapeños and tomatillo and the savory guacamole. Ricky Bayless has poured heart and soul into this restaurant, which explains why the line never ends at this restaurant. The churros are the perfect blend of crunchy and sugary outside and soft inside. The menu might not be as extensive as many other restaurants, but each item is intentionally created to deliver the culinary message intended.
118 W Grand Ave, Chicago, Il 60654
Tanta is a chic restaurant that has been operational since 2013. Their main menu is Peruvian, and the fresh cebiches are to die for. If you have ever been to Peru and had the Lomo Saltado, this restaurant will serve you exactly the same thing you would expect from the country. If it’s your first time visiting, they the nigiri pobre, which is wagyu beef that is served with a quail egg topping as an appetizer and follow this up with the Lomo Saltado, a stir fry that features very tender beef and some fries. Wrap up the experience with a drink of your choice. You can go for the cocktail menu that features authentic Peruvian alcoholic drinks like the El chignon margarita or go for the no alcoholic drinks like the Chicha Morada. They have enough seating to ensure you can entertain some family or friends and the interiors liven the mood even before you start eating.
The Hampton Social
353 W. Hubbard St Chicago, IL 60654
Enter into a Pinteresty vibe when you walk into The Hampton Social, and you will immediately be impressed by the aesthetics which makes it one of the most attractive river north restaurants. After ensuring they impress you with the aesthetics, they then serve up food that makes you feel the part. Their American style food delivers on the classics like sandwiches and burgers. The fires are some of the best, and the portions are great. There is also a variation of drinks that are both alcoholic and non-alcoholic. The food is served fast, so you can be assured you will not be left hanging for a while. Because of the great food and the ambience, you can take some beautiful social media pictures.
401 N Franklin St Chicago, IL 60654
Jessie D has been in the coffee and pastry industry for more than ten years, and he has invested his experience in a doughnut artisan restaurant that serves coffee as well. The Doughnut Vault produces handcrafted doughnuts that test a variety of ingredients and flavors to deliver the most intense and intricate tastes you might have ever tasted. Their classic buttermilk and pistachio, gingerbread stack, and yeast chestnut doughnuts are a must-try if you are visiting this place for the first time. You can also go for the cookies and cream if you are a sweet tooth. The shop is closed for dining in, but you can order for delivery or drop by for a great selection of cookies to have for breakfast at home or at the go.
226 W Kinzie Ave Chicago, IL, 60654
Let’s just say if you have ever dreamed of being in a movie set kind of restaurant; this is the one place you should try out. A brainchild of Brendan Sodikoff, this restaurant is not just good aesthetics; it is unique food as well. The interior looks a lot like a house in the 50’s50’s but without the mustiness. One thing you will notice is that they switch up to something that has been in the food industry for a while. You could eat some fillet mignon without immediately knowing that it is the classic fillet mignon. The food here is a cross between Italian and American cuisines. The stuffed artichoke is something that will remind you of an elegant version of your grandma’s. We highly recommend the orecchiette Pugliese, which is pasta with spicy sausage, butter rapini and a generous amount of parmesan. This retails for $19. The food is served in generous portions, so you might be too stuffed for dessert. However, you can enjoy the pavlova or carry it for a late-night sweet snack.
519 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654
The Beatrix is what you would imagine a modern chic style house would look like. The earthy tones, the warm lighting and the timber, bring out a very millennial vibe. The menu is extensive, with their center of attention is the coffee and cookies section. The cookies are specially crafted in-house, and the coffee features brews from the Beatrix Coffee Roasters. The restaurant is a great option to dine with family and friends, including kids. The vegan truffled mushroom risotto and the vegan penne arrabbiata are a culinary and tummy-filling delight for vegetarians, and the miso-caramel salmon is an alternative for non-vegetarians. Finish it up with one of their tasty cocktails.
315 N. LaSalle Street Chicago, IL
A seat overlooking the riverside as you enjoy fresh seafood entrees and cool mimosas, what more could anyone possibly ask for? River Roast is an urbane restaurant that promises a great view and even greater food. If you are in the mood for a picnic by the riverside with friends, they have a cheese board, a charcuterie and a burrata board that will serve all your brunch needs. The roast in the name is not just an aesthetic; you can get a selection of roasts from fish to bird and beef. We loved the pork tenderloin that consisted of slow-roasted pork that is very juicy served with pea shoots and chimichurri. We had outs with a side of fried potatoes and accompanies it with a grapefruit sculpin beer. I would call that an afternoon well spent!