They call it the Second City but in Chicago, the food is First Class. Of course, we all love the Windy City classics, but with all of those planes coming in and out of O’Hare, you know Chicago’s an incredibly international city, too. Folks from all over the world follow the winds to the shores of Lake Michigan and bring mouthwatering flavors from Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, Latin American and more. We won’t lie to you, it does get cold there, but it makes those summer months that much sweeter – and the vibes at rooftop bars and outdoor seating restaurants that much better. Plus, they have plenty of fun during the cold months too, thanks to world-class food halls, some of the best sports on the planet, and the most charming neighborhoods in the country.
Let’s start with what everyone knows about Chi-Town – the Deep Dish Pizza is epic. Whether it’s Malnati’s or Giordano’s, the Chicago Deep Dish pizza is a one-of-a-kind, unique bit of culinary artistry, brought to the city by Neapolitan immigrants at the turn of 20th century. We do our best to weigh in on what’s the best between the classics and new up and comers. Plus, the influx of Italian immigrants to Chicago at this time brought about another classic meal the town is known for – The Italian Beef Sandwich. With access to cheap, tougher cuts of meat thanks to the City’s thriving meatpacking business, these immigrants would slowly braise them in a flavorful, spicy broth and place them atop freshly baked Italian bread. Now, there are literally dozens of Italian Beef restaurants around the Chicagoland area.
The Windy City isn’t the only thing that’ll knock you off your feet, the delicious food will do the same. If you’re in Chicago and need somewhere to grab a bite, listed are the Top 20 Restaurants in Chicago, IL.
1932 W Division St | Chicago, IL 60622
A classic American dining spot will always do it to you! Offering a seasonal menu with exclusive beers always brewing, The Perch is a full service restaurant and bar where you can kick back, eat good, and drink what you desire. Come each season for a different experience every time, you won’t get tired of it!
809 W Randolph St | Chicago, IL 60607
With a motto of serving bold and global flavors, everyone has a chance to explore their cravings on an International level! The Girl and the Goat always strives to make each diner feel like family with their welcoming environment and comforting energy. Come try their seasonal flavors, you won’t know what to pick!
2056 W Division St | Chicago, IL 60622
Everyone loves a classic French cuisine, especially when it is family owned. With their food being high quality yet approachable, this allows each visitor to feel comforted in the restaurant’s atmosphere. Occasional live music, French dining, outdoor cocktail area, what could make the environment more perfect?
1840 W North Ave | Chicago, IL 60622
Wood-fired dishes, a relaxed environment, and on top of that, the food is affordable! Seasonally crafted menus offer year-round deliciousness, with an attention to each detail for the highest quality. Their home-inspired layout makes you feel like you’re in your own home, it doesn’t get better than this!
120 N Upper Wacker Dr | Chicago, IL 60606
Bar Mar not only offers extraordinary cuisines, but eating here is a whole experience as well. Creativity is a big factor here, and you see it in their dishes! Sophisticated plates mixed with vibrance, it’s the perfect balance. You won’t find a more unique restaurant, so go explore!
444 Michigan Ave | Chicago, IL 60611
Bringing Mediterranean to the Windy City, The Purple Pig offers “Cheese, Swine, and Wine”. With an open layout, this gives diners the chance to feel comfortable and have the space to dine as they please. Check out their wine selection too, it’s impressive!
2138 S Archer Ave | Chicago, IL 60616
Known as the most authentic Chinese food in the city, MCCB Chicago strives to offer the highest of quality always. Whether you’re getting the daily special or any of their signature dishes, you’ll leave nothing less than satisfied. Ready to eat?
3309 W Fullerton Ave | Chicago, IL 60647
Ambiance is everything, and Penumbra brings it all to the table. This top tier Steak and Seafood restaurant offers the best of the best. Latin influence means Romance is on the menu, so pick a date and come on over!
2002 S Wentworth Ave #103 | Chicago, IL 60616
Dumplings galore, literally! Qing Xiang Yuan Dumplings offers the best dumplings in the Windy City, and they even have a dumpling making class. The fun never stops, and neither does the flavor. Which dumplings are catching your eye?
2427 N Milwaukee Ave | Chicago, IL 60647
Glam isn’t the only thing on the menu, but it sure is prominent! American dining inspired by gambling sounds like an interesting destination, so this is a must to try. While the restaurant interior is beautiful, they also have outdoor dining accompanied by an outdoor bar! Time to place a bet on who gets there first…
226 W Kinzie St | Chicago, IL 60654
Italian food is always a mood, especially when it’s at Ciccio Mio. While the lights are low, the cravings are high. Whether you’re coming for their dinner menu, a cup of coffee, a long list of wine, or just for the ambiance, there’s no way to leave disappointed!
145 N Dearborn St | Chicago, IL 60602
Surrounded by destinations such as the theatre, museums, high end companies, and more, there isn’t anyone you won’t find at Dearborn. Whether it’s before a show, after work, or just a casual evening, the vibes are there to spare. Looking for an American dish or a pretty cocktail? They got you covered!
8 W Maple St | Chicago, IL 60610
Martinis, Menus, and more! Maple & Ash not only offers Steak, but a whole Steakhouse experience. Steak and seafood sound scrumptious, but take a look at their wine list as well. I mean seriously, all our boxes are checked off!
3400 N Lawndale Ave | Chicago, IL 60618
Every corner needs a neighborhood Italian spot, and this corner has the best one. Offering Italian cuisine with an inspiration from Argentina, it’s the best of both worlds. A place for people to come together and eat good food, the entire menu is homemade. That being said, make yourself at home!
443 E Illinois St | Chicago, IL 60611
Mediterranean is on the menu, but so are the amazing views! Not only do you get to enjoy the food in front of you, but the river in front of the terrace as well. Whether you’re just there for the food or the entire experience, Pinched on the River will have you leaving relaxed and full.
615 W Randolph St | Chicago, IL 60661
Known as a Chicago favorite, this is where “Mediterranean meets the Midwest”. With their comfortable seating making you feel like you’re at home, you won’t ever leave! While the food is a hit, check out Bar Avec as well! Time for a good time!
800 W Randolph St | Chicago, IL 60607
First come, first serve, so snatch a seat at this traditional diner. As a signature diner, you’ll find all of your favorite comfort foods that you’re craving. There’s a passion for eggs, so breakfast for dinner anyone? This classic neighborhood spot is waiting for you!
3209 W Armitage Ave | Chicago, IL 60647
Looking for a seasonal menu with American dishes that are not only pretty to look at, but also delicious?! Giant strives to make the dining experience just that, an experience! Their plates may be simple, but they don’t lack authenticity. Wine, cocktails, food, and funk!
1904 W North Ave | Chicago, IL 60622
Are we in the tropics or Chicago? You may not be able to tell the difference at Amaru. With Latin American and Caribbean influence, their meals are nothing less than exotic. While you’re at it, try one of their tropical cocktails for a good time!
950 W Lake St | Chicago, IL 60607
As Chicago’s first Okonomiyaki restaurant, there’s plenty to try at Gaijin. With their known Japanese savory pancakes, exquisite desert menu, and even highballs at the bar, their goal is to provide a lively and interactive eating experience for everyone. Let’s try something new!