Your Ultimate Guide to Chicago Restaurant Week 2017

Chicago Restaurant Week

Chicago Restaurant Week 2017The following is an updated 2017 version of our annual Chicago Restaurant Week Guide.

Chicagoans are an easily excitable bunch. We’re thrilled when the weather inches above 40 degrees, when the gas creeps below $2 per gallon, when we can eat outside and call it a festival. We’re easily excitable. That’s just us.

Chicago Restaurant Week, however, is an event worth the hoopla that surrounds it. A diverse list of over 300 restaurants, including a few Michelin star winners, offer prix fixe menus priced below $44 ($22 for lunch, $33 for dinner on average). It’s a great thing but there are a few caveats of which you should be aware.” – Your Ultimate Guide to Chicago Restaurant Week 2015

Each year we publish a Chicago Restaurant Week Guide, including 5 tips on how to avoid being duped by the hoopla.

Getting the Most Out of Chicago Restaurant Week: 5 Tips

  1. Avoid “new” items not typically offered by the restaurant. For some eateries, the new items are more down-to-earth versions of menu staples thought too intimidating for the average diner. For others, these “new” items are simply watered down knock-offs of the restaurant’s typical offerings. Regardless of the reason why they’re on the prix fixe menu, these are not the dishes the restaurant is known for. My advice is to skip them altogether.
  2. Do the math. Compare the prix fixe menu to the regular and decide if you’re actually saving any coins. If no savings is truly being offered, skip the prix fixe and just order from the regular menu at another time.
  3. Check the reviews. 350 restaurants are a lot, even for Chicago. Some who made the list, frankly, shouldn’t be there. A few are dives with good bar food and a few are mediocre at best. Google and Yelp are still your friend here.
  4. Promptly make reservations.
  5. If you can’t decide, choose from our list of favorites below.


BG = Bib Gourmand; 1 Star = 1 Michelin Star; * = Kari’s Fav

  1. avec – Mediterranean, West Loop, Suggested Items: Lentil Soup, Avec Burger, Cremeux, Lunch MenuBG
  2. * bellyQ – Asian Barbecue, West Town, Suggested Items: Goat Cheese Salad, Chicken Pho, Mini Bao, Dinner Menu BG
  3. * Blackbird Restaurant American, West Loop, Suggested Items: Fennel Custard, Grilled Sturgeon, Pecan PieLunch Menu 1 Star
  4. Café Des Architectes and the Cigale Private Dining Room, French, Near North Side, Suggested Items: Butternut Squash Soup, Trout, Chocolate Spiral Lunch Menu
  5. * Café Spiaggia Italian, Magnificent Mile, Suggested Items: Tomato Soup, Pappardelle, Tart Lunch | Dinner Menu 1 Star
  6. * Cherry Circle Room American Contemporary, Loop, Suggested Items: French Onion Soup, Risotto, Apples & CaramelLunch Menu
  7. * Chez Moi, French, Lincoln Park, Suggested Items: Chestnut Soup, Pan Seared Salmon, Chocolate CakeDinner Menu
  8. * Cindy’s, American, Loop, Suggested Items: Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese, Rigatoni, Citrus, Tea & Honey Lunch Menu
  9. * Dove’s Luncheonette, Southern-inspired Mexican, Wicker Park, Suggested items: Back to Life Cocktail, Chile Verde, Fried Chicken Dinner Menu BG
  10. * Dusek’s Board & Beer, American, Pilsen, Suggested Items: Duck Paté, Broccoli Steak, Spiced Brown Butter Pound Cake Lunch | Dinner Menu 1 Star
  11. * Fig & Olive, French Inspired, Gold Coast, Suggested Item: Squash & Chestnut Soup, Truffle Risotto, Chocolate Pot de Crème, Lunch | Dinner Menu
  12. Frontera Grill, Mexican, River North, Suggested Items: Tamales, Fish and Green Peanut Mole Lunch | Dinner Menu BG
  13. * Fulton Market Kitchen, Global, Fulton Market, Suggested Items: Salmon Tartare, Linguine with Clams, Coffee & Doughnuts Dinner Menu
  14. * GT Fish & Oyster, Coastal, River North, Suggested Items: Monkey Bread, Crab Benedict, Shrimp & Grits Brunch | Lunch Menu BG
  15. Joy District, Modern American, River North, Suggested Items:  Squash Soup, Quail Saltimbocca, Lobster Pot Pie Dinner Menu
  16. Le Colonial, French Vietnamese, Gold Coast, Suggested Items: Cha Gio, Bo Luc Lac, Coffee and Sorbets Lunch | Dinner Menu
  17. The Lobby, Contemporary American, Mag Mile, Suggested Items: Chestnut Bisque, Champagne Risotto, Cream Puffs Lunch | Dinner Menu
  18. McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood & Steaks, American, Various Locations, Suggested Items: Clam Chowder, Prawns, Chocolate Pot de Créme Lunch | Dinner Menu
  19. National 27, Modern Latin, River North, Suggested Item: Short Rib Empanada, Mahi-Mahi Tacos, Tres Leches Dinner Menu
  20. * New Rebozo, Mexican, River North, Suggested Items: Tamales, Mole, Bola de Cajeta  Dinner Menu
  21. The Promontory, Modern American,  Hyde Park, Suggested Items: Squash Soup, Beef Sandwhich, Butterscotch Budino Lunch | Dinner Menu
  22. * Rockit Bar & Grill, American, River North, Suggested Items: Salmn Tartare, Mini Burger, Sticky Date Pudding Lunch | Dinner Menu
  23. Seven Lions, American, Loop, Suggested Items: Squash and Brussels Sprout Panzanella, Strozzapretti Pasta, Chocolate Espresso Dinner Menu
  24. Smack Shack, Coastal, West Loop/Fulton Market, Suggested Items: Fritto Misto, Salmon or Fried Chicken, Chocolate Cake Dinner Menu
  25. Sunda, New Asian, River North, Suggested Items: Kimchi Soup, Duck, Salmon topped with Spicy Shrimp, Afritada-braised Chicken Lunch | Brunch Menu
  26. Topolobampo, Mexican, River North, Suggested Items: Azteca Soup, Carne Asada, Sopa de Frutas Lunch Menu 1 Star
  27. * Tortoise Supper Club,  Coastal, River North, Suggested Items: Shrimp Cocktail, Cedar Planked Salmon, Tortoise Pie Lunch |Dinner Menu
  28. XOCO, Mexican, River North, Suggested Items: Chicarron, Sikil Pak, Mole Torta, Churro All Day Menu

Restaurant Week Kick-Off: First Bites Bash

January 26, 2017 from 5:30-8:30 p.m.
Aon Grand Ballroom at Navy Pier (600 E. Grand Ave.)

First Bites Bash is the official kick-off event for the 10th annual Chicago Restaurant Week, produced by Choose Chicago. Join Chicago foodies inside the magnificent Aon Grand Ballroom at Navy Pier for savory and sweet food tastings from over 60 of Chicago’s most celebrated chefs and restaurants. Toast to the city’s culinary scene with beer, wine and spirits.Chef/Partner Sarah Grueneberg of Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio will host this year’s event, from which a portion of the proceeds will benefit Greater Chicago Food Depository.

Happy eating, Chicago!

Featured Image: Chance the Rapper, Family (Video)