There’s no better place to enjoy summer in Chicago than at our restaurants. Whether you want to sip seasonal cocktails, dig into dishes made from the freshest seasonal ingredients, or just kick back on a sun-filled patio, there’s a perfect Chicago spot for you to enjoy this summer. Here are just a few of our favorite Chicago restaurants for summer dining.
It feels like summer all year long at Aba, with its abundant greenery and a light-and-airy atmosphere. But summertime is when you can snag a spot on their sprawling rooftop patio where you can order plates of fresh, seasonally inspired fare, like fresh seafood, hummus with fluffy pita, and other Mediterranean favorites.
This Pilsen spot is the perfect blend of trendy hotspot and casual neighborhood hangout. Monnie Burke’s sleek interior leads to their string-light-strewn patio, where you’ll find locals sipping craft cocktails and digging into shareable small plates all summer long.
In a neighborhood packed with hot new restaurants, etta still manages to shine. This Wicker Park spot, located just off a few blocks from the buzzy Six Corners area, is particularly popular in the summer, when you can grab a spot on the sun-bathed rooftop and enjoy wood-fired pizzas, ultra-fresh veggie dishes, and some fo the best focaccia you’ll ever taste.
TWO Restaurant and Bar
At rustic-chic TWO Restaurant and Bar in West Town, your meal comes straight from the sprawling pastures and fertile farmlands of the Midwest. Try something new from the ever-changing seasonal menu, which boasts a mouthwatering lineup of from-scratch items, from housemade sausages and cheeses to house-cured pork and lamb bacon.
Also celebrating the Midwestern seasons in all their glory, Lincoln Park’s The Kennison boasts a veggie-laden menu with a modern American approach. The dishes are crafted with both seasonality and sustainability in mind, taking advantage of the Green City Market just across the street. There’s also plenty of options for meat eaters and a stunning raw bar with crudo, tartare, and fresh oysters.
GT Fish & Oyster
Another solid spot for seafood is the upscale GT Fish & Oyster. This Bib Gourmand winner features a menu that’s part traditional and part modern, with options like hamachi crudo, crab cakes, clam chowder, smoked fish, a lobster roll, and whole fish specials. There’s also caviar service, offering the delicacy from a variety of regions.
Lockwood Restaurant & Bar
Or, visit a Chicago landmark to try some of the freshest fare in the city. At Lockwood Restaurant & Bar inside the historic Palmer House Hilton, you’ll find items from the hotel’s rooftop garden and apiary gracing the chef-inspired menu. Although dishes change frequently based on availability, it’s always easy to find the perfect drink pairing with the restaurant’s extensive wine program.
Long-time stalwart in the Chicago dining scene, Michelin-starred Topolobampo is no stranger to vibrant flavors and seasonal, sustainably raised ingredients. With iconic Chef Rick Bayless at the helm, this contemporary Mexican restaurant in the River North neighborhood seamlessly transforms regional ingredients from Chicago-area farms with Mexican flavors and innovative preparations.