If you are looking to embrace your inner foodie and enjoy an immense number of restaurants, from authentic to inspired to purely artistic, then look no further than Chicago. At the heart of the U.S. lies a real gem of culinary exploration.
In order to take full advantage of the incredible food scene in Chicago, however, you need to dig into the many unique neighbourhoods of Chicago and STAY AWAY from the tourist traps of Michigan Avenue and downtown. As one of the most culturally diverse cities in the USA, Chicago offers a rich variety of restaurants, the best of which are never captured in guide books.
I could write a whole book about my Chicago food adventures over the past year, but today I will highlight two key neighbourhoods and my favourite restaurants in each so you can create a food adventure of your own:
Set right on Lake Michigan and just north of downtown, this neighbourhood has grown to house a high volume of young professionals and families. Given the young nature of this area, many trendy restaurants have opened here, yet it is still off the radar of many visitors. A few of my favourites that I highly recommend to visitors include Low Country (a no-frills Cajun seafood boil), Ceres Table (modern Italian cuisine with pasta made in-house), and Mortar and Pestle (trendy breakfast restaurant that elevates traditional breakfast foods with gourmet twists).
Located just west of downtown, this area is comprised of renovated warehouses that have now become some of the hottest apartments and restaurants in the city. While some restaurants have been highly acclaimed in this area, there are a few hidden gems that are foodie paradise. A few of my favourites are Bombobar (a hot chocolate, doughnut and gelato bar that serves up delicious and beautiful treats) and Girl and the Goat (trendy, modern American small plates. Be sure to make reservations 2+ months ahead because it is a local favourite).
Chicago is a foodie paradise. Stay tuned for more posts in which I’ll continue our foodie adventure through the unique neighbourhoods of Chicago! You can also follow my Instagram page @DiningConDanielle for more Chicago restaurant recommendations.