Chicago is the home of encased meats and expertly cooked steaks. Two ends of the spectrum that cater to the working throngs with efficiency but also delight diners who are seeking a more elevated meal. But when it comes to finding places to eat in Chicago, don’t settle for the nearest hot dog joint or chain restaurant. Seek out these gems of Chicago’s dining scene if you’re looking for a place to eat that stands out in Chicago.
Places To Eat in Chicago:
This classic drive-in establishment on the northwest side of Chicago hearkens back to a different era in all the best ways. From the larger-than-life fiberglass sculptures adorning the rooftop of the roadside restaurant, which are inexplicably designed to look like a Tarzan hot dog man and 1950’s hot dog girl with a poodle skirt, to the retro signage and delivery service right up to your parked car, this place is a blast from the past. The Chicago style hot dog is a staple at almost any greasy spoon restaurant in the Windy City, but Superdawg separates itself from the pack by laying on the charm and topping things off with kitschy reminders to olden days. And it’s still a family business after more than fifty years!
Another exquisite example of old school charm in Chicago’s restaurant scene, Erie Cafe will make you feel at right at home as soon as you walk in the door. Classic hospitality is still the vibe at this Italian steakhouse in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. Many members of the staff have been serving faithful customers for decades, and folks who visit Chicago and stop by this restaurant will feel like they’re dining with old friends.
1901 Restaurant at AceBounce
This is a recent addition to Chicago’s dining scene, but nowhere else in town (or the country for that matter) can you find a restaurant with the atmosphere and energy to match this spot. 1901 Restaurant has a menu designed by James Beard-awarded chef Rick Gresh and it sits adjacent to a sprawling ping pong party zone that’s buzzing with excitement night after night. It’s the best of both worlds: elevated food that’s got a serious culinary profile but accessible to you even while you play a few games of ping pong. Not into playing? Then get your own cozy table, uncork a bottle of expertly paired wine up in the restaurant and watch the excitement unfurl before you.