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Chicago’s dining scene reflects the city’s diversity. You’ll find a bit of everything, from comfort food and dive bars to international flavors and Michelin-starred spots. Here’s a taste of Chicago’s most essential and eclectic eats.

iconinc chicago dining

Iconic Chicago dining

Check off your bucket list with these classic Chicago eats.

Deep dish pizza at Lou Malnati’s

famous restaurants

Try these 20 must-eat items

local favorites

Grab a seat at Chicago’s famous restaurants

local favorites

Don’t miss out on local favorites

famous restaurants

Try these 20 must-eat items

famous restaurants

Corned beef from Manny’s Deli

Classic Chicago dishes

Think Chicago dining is only about deep dish? Think again. While you’ll definitely find some of the best pizza in the country here, the city has also invented and perfected dozens of delicious dishes.

The brownie was born in Chicago, as was the jibarito — a Puerto Rican-inspired specialty made with fried green plantains and loaded with seafood, meat or vegetables. Other must-eat items? A juicy Italian beef sandwich, a rainbow-colored ice cream cone, a world-famous burger, and some of the best cheesecake you’ve ever had. And yes — you need or try a slice (or two) of our iconic deep dish. Bring your appetite and try all 20 Chicago staples.

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local favorites

Grab a seat at Chicago’s famous restaurants

local favorites

Chef Grant Achatz at Alinea, photo courtesy of Alinea.

Famous Chicago restaurants

Chicago’s food scene is one of the best in the country. Don’t just take it from us — we’ve been called that by Bon Appétit, Time Out, Condé Nast Traveler and more. We’re home to an astonishing array of acclaimed restaurants, from cheap eats to avant garde.

Maybe the most-awarded restaurant in the city: Alinea. The fine dining spot is frequently listed among the best restaurants in the world. On the other end of the spectrum, you can try a Chicago-style dog at Portillo’s or a crispy thin crust pizza at Home Run Inn. And don’t miss out on the outstanding international fare scattered throughout Chicago’s neighborhoods.

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local favorites

Don’t miss out on local favorites

local favorites

Yoshi’s Cafe

Local favorites

Head to the neighborhoods for some of Chicago’s best bites. These local gems will give you a true sense of the local flavor and astonishing diversity of the city’s dining scene.

Ann Sather in Lakeview and Edgewater is a local favorite for brunch, with some of the best cinnamon rolls in the city. Hing Kee is a welcoming noodle shop in Chinatown. Order a banana split at Margie’s Candies in Bucktown, or try the Asian-French fusion at Yoshi’s Cafe in Boystown. Or devour a rack of ribs at Twin Anchors in Old Town, one of the city’s oldest restaurants. Check out the full list of classic neighborhood restaurants.

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new and trending chicago dining

New & trending

The city’s latest trendsetters and tastemakers.

Café Bonhomme in the Loop, photo courtesy of Beatnik

notable chicago restaurants

Check out these hot new restaurants

west loop food

Experience foodie heaven in West Loop

notable chicago restaurants

Check out these hot new restaurants

notable chicago restaurants

Cabra in the West Loop, photo courtesy of Cabra

New & trending restaurants

Chicago’s restaurant scene is constantly evolving, and these new spots are some of the hottest tables in town.

The richly decorated, boho-inspired Café Bonhomme is dishing out sharable Mediterranean cuisine. Young American opened to a ton of buzz, thanks to their progressive menu and CBD cocktails. Cabra is a lush rooftop retreat with Peruvian flair from celebrity chef Stephanie Izard. And Jeong made the transition from a mall food court to one of the most hotly anticipated restaurants of the year.

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west loop food

Experience foodie heaven in West Loop

west loop food

Elske in the West Loop, photo courtesy of Elske

West Loop dining

Once an industrial corridor, the West Loop has transformed into a thriving hub for some of Chicago’s latest and greatest dining. The former meat-packing factories have been taken over by hip coffee shops, experimental cocktail bars, and award-winning restaurants.

If you’re looking to get a taste of the area, head to “Restaurant Row” on West Randolph or wander through the Fulton Market area. Both feature streets lined with trending restaurants and bars that draw foodies from far and wide. Try to snag a table for a Baja-inspired brewery and taqueria, one of the best burgers in the country, progressive Indian cuisine, house-smoked barbecue, a Danish tasting menu, and so much more.

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Featured Spots
outdoor dining

Outdoor dining

Soak in every second of summer at these alfresco spots.

Cindy’s rooftop patio, photo by Thomas Hart Shelby

outdoor dining

Top spots to eat outside

outdoor dining

Top spots to eat outside

outdoor dining

Photo courtesy of Monnie Burke's

Outdoor dining spots

Bustling patios, buzzing beer gardens, waterfront hotspots, rooftop retreats. In Chicago, you’ll find Chicagoans drinking and dining outside nearly year-round. During the warmer months in particular, outdoor dining spots come to life all across Chicago.

If you want drinks with a view, check out Cindy’s rooftop bar and restaurant that overlooks Millennium Park. Piccolo Sogno’s romantic patio has hidden garden vibes. Enjoy fried chicken and frozen drinks on Parson’s hip patios. Or bar hop down the Riverwalk’s stretch of scenic outdoor dining options. And that’s just scratching the surface — check out the full list below.

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carf breweries

Craft breweries

Raise a glass in the brewing capital of the country.

Half Acre tap room in Ravenswood

tap rooms

Taste local brews at top taprooms

friday night flights

Drink with locals at Friday Night Flights

tap rooms

Taste local brews at top taprooms

tap rooms

Goose Island taproom on Fulton Street

Chicago taprooms

Chicago is home to over 160 breweries, more than any other city in the U.S. That means no visit to Chicago is complete without tasting one of our craft beers — preferably straight from a local taproom.

Our brewing scene is a dynamic mix of veritable superstars (think Goose Island, Lagunitas, Revolution, and Half Acre) and hip microbreweries (like Hopewell, Finch Beer Co., and so many more). We’re even home to more experimental brewers (try the botanical beers at Forbidden Root or the latest concoction at Empirical) and the world’s first Michelin-starred brewpub (the honor goes to Band of Bohemia in Ravenswood).

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friday night flights

Drink with locals at Friday Night Flights

friday night flights

Friday Night Flights at Gallagher Way

Friday Night Flights

Just like Chicago is a city of neighborhoods, our craft beer community is made up of unique neighborhood breweries. We’re home to 70 neighborhood breweries and counting, and you can taste them on their own turf during Friday Night Flights.

The summer tasting series features a dynamic lineup of local breweries, with each event taking place in a different neighborhood. This year’s events include stops at 31st Street Beach, hip Logan Square, the scenic Riverwalk, and more. Plus, listen to live music and enjoy fare from local food trucks.

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