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Eat This Now

Photo Credit: Jeff Schear

Free Range Chicken from the Spit at Chicken Shop
Sure, Soho House Chicago is the city’s most glamorous new arrival, but Chicken Shop, one of the private club’s three public restaurants, takes its inspiration from the humble general store. The simple menu features rotisserie chicken: Free-range birds that are marinated overnight, steamed, and then slowly spun over a charcoal fire, resulting in tender meat and crispy skin.

Kentucky Burgoo at Promontory
Get a little bit of Appalachia in Hyde Park with Promontory’s Kentucky Burgoo. Burgoo is a traditional catchall stew featuring three meats, and Chef Jared Wentworth’s recipe—prepared over an open hearth with pork collar, quail, rabbit sausage, among a rotating cast of seasonal vegetables—is no exception.

Smoked Brisket & Black Garlic Ramen at Ramen-San
It may bill itself as an “upbeat den of Japanese noodles and beer,” but Ramen-San takes its ramen seriously. The smoked brisket ramen features brisket smoked in-house, then bathed in black garlic–miso butter, with double broth, a molten egg, braised shitake mushrooms, wakame, bamboo shoots, green onions, and pickled ginger. A little fried garlic, crispy shitake mushrooms, and rayu chili oil on top add contrast.

Roasted Corn Pizza at Enolo Wine Bar
If there’s such a thing as rustic-luxe, Enolo nails it. With rough-hewn wood behind the bar and a gilded ceiling overhead, this River North spot is a delightful study in juxtaposition—as is its roasted corn pizza: caramelized onions, Parmesan cream, and spinach topped with sweet Midwestern corn. Customize your pizza with some salty Italian prosciutto or salumi for an unexpected—but equally delightful—combination.

Beef Pierogi at Bohemian House
Chicago is a pierogi kind of town, and Bohemian House’s cross between the traditional dumpling and a rich pot roast make for a stellar new entry. With a silky sour cream dough on the outside, an intensely braised beef shoulder stew on the inside, and crunchy pickled onions on top, this might make you forget your little hole-in-the-wall place on the northwest side.

Spicy Miso-Roasted Maine Lobster at RPM Steak
Yes, it can be challenging to get a table at RPM Steak, the latest “see/be-seen” spot in the RPM franchise, and yes, this is a steak house, but yes, you should get the lobster. A two pound Maine lobster is split in half, then brushed with a signature sauce featuring white miso, kewpie mayo, and lime juice, then roasted for exactly nine minutes in a charcoal oven. You won’t even miss the steak.

Shrimp Papaya Salad at mfk.
Simple and rustic meet crafted execution at mfk.—Chicago’s newest Spanish- and seafood-inspired concept. Chef Nick Lacasse is bringing the seaside to Lincoln Park with casual yet refined dishes, such as crunchy prawn heads and boquerones with shaved fennel on a grilled baguette. The shrimp papaya salad combines delicately poached prawns with finely shredded green papaya in a light vinaigrette. It makes a great starter before jumping into their “from the plancha” section, and works equally well solo for lunch.

Chicken Adobo at Laughing Bird
Top Chef alum Chrissy Camba is putting her spin on Filipino food at Lincoln Square’s Laughing Bird with dishes like sizzling pigs head and pancit palabak, a stir-fried noodle dish. Chicken adobo is a signature Filipino dish, and Camba’s version—tender chicken marinated in vinegar and soy sauce served over simple jasmine rice with a side of their collaboration hot sauce—is comfort food with an ethnic twist.

Crespella at Osteria Langhe
When you think crêpe, you think French, but the crespella at Osteria Langhe—Chicago’s newest Italian concept—will make you rethink Italian food. Farm vegetables are wrapped in a delicate crêpe with a spicy leek fonduta, along with whole grain granola and quinoa for crunch. Inspired by the cuisine of Italy’s Piedmont region, Chef Cameron Grant’s menu strays from traditional pasta dishes with a carne cruda and a braised rabbit and pork belly.

The Hot Pot at Parachute
Husband and wife team Beverly Kim (a former Top Chef alum) and John Clark opened their first brick-and-mortar in Avondale earlier this summer, offering the neighborhood Korean-American cuisine. The very large, family-style hot pot—think rich dashi broth stew—comes served tableside in a deep pot, and changes periodically based on their creative vision. Bring friends for sharing and a taste for umami.

The Whole Chicken at River Roast
The latest concept from Tony Mantuano offers a shift away from Italian and finer dining. Nestled along the Chicago River, the more casual River Roast focuses on one of America’s most beloved proteins: chicken. Don’t miss the whole roasted chicken, carved tableside with a side of roasted potatoes, as well as bites such as the lobster terrine and charred cauliflower.

The Seared Cod at The Winchester
Originally a brunch spot in Chicago’s Ukrainian Village, this farm-to-table restaurant helmed by Greg Bastien recently opened up for dinner service. The menu features beauties such as herbaceous bucatini and meatballs, and a Moroccan spiced carrot top and hummus salad crostini. Get the seared cod, served with a turnip gratin on a plate of tomatillo purée topped with caramelized cauliflower and pickled garlic. While you’re there, order a cocktail from one of Chicago’s more notable mixologists, Peter Vestinos.

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