River Roast

Not so long ago, dining around the Chicago River would have been considered a bit of an adventure, and perhaps for reasons other than the food. Today, dining along the river in the Loop has become a bit of a "must-do" for folks visiting the city.

Tony Mantuano's River Roast is one of these signature riverfront experience and since opening in 2014, it has garnered a host of accolades and praise. I recently stopped by for lunch and I'm pleased to say that the environment is hospitable and that the food (particularly if you like roasts of all persuasions) is quite good.

[more]

Several friends had mentioned the array of sandwiches and I went with the Cubano. The ciabatta roll was the perfect way to keep everything together and the smoked pork, ham and house-made chorizo made for a fine trifecta, along with the pickle and horseradish sauce. Additionally, the local beets salad and the romaine chopped made for fine accompaniments. 

River Roast

Over on the "Bites & Boards" side of the menu, I tried the tempura zucchini blossoms, which have the light touch that one would except from such a restaurant. There are a range of other items here, and if you're looking for something on the lighter side, you can pair a soup and sandwich.

River Roast

Now on the roast side of things, I took on the Boatload of Veggies (above), which offered an array of locally-sourced vegetables in season, which during the height of summer is impressive. I'll go out on a limb and surmise that many of them came from farms in northwest Indiana, downstate Illinois, and perhaps a smattering of southern Wisconsin heritage. They were most excellent and I'd also suggest their roast meats, which include a whole chicken (for two, naturally), roast beef, and so on.

 

Let us handle the cooking. (photo via @xitsjustchris) #riverroast #summerinchicago

A photo posted by River Roast Chicago (@riverroastchi) on

Rounding out my meal was a selection of bundt cakes (below) and a bit of soft serve ice cream (red velvet cupcake flavor, in case you were wondering.) I'd give top honors to the orange & fennel cake and if you're feeling ambitious (and perhaps with a group) go for the trio and linger awhile.

 

Afterwards, you may wish to travel on, and you can do so via foot to experience the Riverwalk and the nearby McCormick Riverhouse & Museum. Better yet, why not take the Chicago Water Taxi? After all, it stops right outside the restaurant.