Friday, September 02, 2005

Restaurants in Chicago

Since I've mentioned Alvin's and my plan to visit some of our favorite restaurants, I thought I'd write up a list of my favorite restaurants in Chicago by cuisine and also an overall list of where I would go if I only had 3 days to eat in Chicago. This is all procrastination from packing, of course, but I rationalize it by saying that it's important because I'll never do it if I don't do it now, and I'm waiting for my washer to finish.

I tried to try lots of different places in the city, but my time was pretty limited because of school, so I was nowhere near as adventurous a diner as I wanted to be. But here's my list of favorites.

Favorites by Cuisine

Armenian: Sayat Nova (Streeterville)

Brunch: Wishbone (W. Loop)

Bubble tea: Joy Yee's (Chinatown)

Caribbean: Calypso (Hyde Park)

Chinese: Evergreen (Chinatown)

Dim sum: Phoenix (Chinatown)

Diner/Cafe: West Egg Cafe (Streeterville)

"Fast" Food - Chicago chains: Portillo's (River North - hot dogs, Italian beef, chicken sandwiches); Burrito Beach (multiple locations)

Fish and Chips: Duke of Perth (Lakeview - AYCE certain nights)

French: Brasserie Jo (River North)

Greek: Greek Islands (Greektown)

Indian: India House (River North) (I didn't get up to Devon as often as I should have)

Italian: Osteria via Stato (River North - prix fixe, outside of that one - no idea, sadly)

Japanese: Sai Cafe (Lincoln Park - sushi), Katsu (NW - everything)

Korean: Hae Woon Dae (NW - BBQ), Korean Restaurant (Ravenswood - bibimbop)

Malaysian: Penang (Chinatown)

Mediterranean: Pili Pili (River North)

Mexican: Cafe El Tapatio (Roscoe Village - also the only Mexican place I've ever been to)

Mexican - Quick: El Norte (River North - good tortas)

Middle Eastern: Cedars of Lebanon (Hyde Park), Kan Zaman (River North)

"New" American ("firm lunches"): Naha (River North)

Pan-Asian: Joy Yee's (Chinatown)

Pizza (Chicago style): Lou Malnati's (multiple locations - I usually got delivery)

Sandwiches: Jimmy John's, Potbelly (multiple locations for both)

Southern: Dixie Kitchen (Hyde Park)

Spanish/Tapas: Cafe Iberico (River North)

Thai: Silver Spoon (River North), Thai Pastry and Thai Avenue (Argyle)

Vietnamese: Tank Pho (Argyle)

If I had 3 days...

Day 1:
  • Breakfast at West Egg Cafe (the omelettes and pancakes are yummy, but I would probably get a turkey burger; the corned beef hash is really good too)
  • Lunch at Portillo's (my choice would be a charbroiled chicken sandwich, no mayo, add honey mustard)
  • Dinner and snack at Joy Yee's (seaweed salad, noodles, tapioca freeze)

Day 2:
  • Breakfast/brunch at Wishbone (andouille chicken hash is really good)
  • Lunch at Jimmy John's (my choice would be #4, no lettuce, no mayo, add onions, add dijon, add cucumbers, add oregano) or Potbelly (turkey and provolone with onions, tomatoes, oregano)
  • Dinner at Greek Islands (everything there is really good, but you've got to start with saganaki; big menu, friendly atmosphere, great food)
  • Dessert at Coldstone (out of habit)
  • Late-night
    snack at Korean Restaurant (they're open 24 hours - bibimbop at 3 am is the best)

Day 3:
  • Skip breakfast, we went for Korean late night!
  • Lunch at Silver Spoon (unfortunately, I haven't been there in awhile, but I hope they still have their banana blossom salad)
  • Dinner at Sai Cafe (spicy white tuna crunch roll!)

And at the end of those 3 days, I'd have gained about 10 pounds. :) Happy eating!


sandia said...


Marissa said...

I originally wanted to limit the pictures to only those places that I listed in the favorites list, but realized after the fact that the last picture doesn't comply. Oh well. I like that place too. Haha.