Edit Module
Edit Module
Edit Module

124 Best Dishes

We scoured the city for the top offerings on Chicago’s world-class restaurant scene. From appetizer through dessert, from über haute pineapple rum soup to down-home juicy fried chicken, here’s your road map to the 124 yummiest dishes around.

(page 9 of 9)

 

KEY: STARTERS | ENTREES | DESSERTS | OTHER GOOD STUFF


SALMON EN MOLE VERDE
Tepatulco
Mexican food lovers know that Geno Bahena is the mole master, but even he rarely puts the classic sauce together with salmon. This time, Bahena figured out a prep that works: Garlic-marinated king salmon takes on a scintillating green mole made from tomatillos, cilantro, epazote, chile serrano, and pumpkinseeds, and we predict the outcome will stand the test of time. 2558 N. Halsted St.; 773-472-7419 [$17]

ANTIPASTI MISTI
Terragusto
Begin with the minted zucchini and carrot salad and make your way around this platter of unique and fresh bites: sweet peppers, eggplant, mozzarella di bufala with pesto, hard-boiled eggs, and salami specially smoked for the restaurant by Paulina Market. When served with crostini and your choice of wine (Terragusto is BYO), you’ll forget you’ve ordered an entrée. 1851 W. Addison St.; 773-248-2777 [$24] 

SMOKED SALMON AND POTATO PIZZA
Tin Fish
Colin Turner paves a crispy potato crust with smoked salmon and sour cream, throws on capers and red onion to doll it up, and calls it pizza. He can name it anything he wants, as long as we can find it on the menu. 18201 S. Harlem Ave., Tinley Park; 708-532-0200 [$9]

TOMAHAWK CHOP
Tramonto’s Steak & Seafood
This whopping 40-ounce dry-aged rib eye for two has a heavy, protruding footlong bone; hence, the name. The meat comes as seven juicy, beautifully marbled slices (who gets dibs on the seventh slice?) seasoned with Tramonto’s signature sea salts, toasted black pepper, and butter. There’s also an option of French sauces but, really, who needs one? Westin Chicago North Shore, 601 N. Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling; 847-777-6575 [$75]

PANCETTA AND ARUGULA PIZZA
Trattoria 225
Not every pizza here hits the mark. But there’s nothing not to like about this brick-oven pie, from the lightly scorched organic whole-wheat crust to the thinly sliced rounds of pancetta and the pile of fresh arugula in the middle. If every neighborhood had a pizza like this, the world would be a better place. 225 Harrison St., Oak Park; 708-358-8555 [$13] 

PINEAPPLE RUM SOUP
Tru
Fruit soups appear as often as flourless chocolate cakes these days, but Gale Gand’s pineapple rum soup inhabits a higher plane. It delivers the brightness of a fine tropical cocktail but with far more finesse, and its passion fruit and mango gelée soothes the chilled soup while a scoop of pink peppercorn-pineapple sherbet adds rich nuance. 676 N. St. Clair St.; 312-202-0001 [$15; $95 three-course menu]

FLATBREAD
Turquoise
Freshly baked twice daily in their kitchen, warm, fragrant slabs of Turkish pide greet customers seconds after they sit down at this stylish Roscoe Village retreat. It’s hard to resist downing the entire basketful before drinks even show up. Crusty, chewy, and seasoned with salt, this bread tastes dandy unadorned—and irresistible when dipped into a pool of the smooth, earthy house-made hummus. 2147 W. Roscoe St.; 773-549-3523 [free]

PASTITSIO
Venus
This Cypriot take on mac and cheese is cooked to order just as soon as a customer gives the go-ahead. Extra-long tubular noodles, bits of tomato, and Asiago cheese are layered atop clusters of nutmeg- and cinnamon-scented ground beef. Capping it all  is a blanket of browned and blistered béchamel custard sauce. Formidably rich, yes, but oh, so worth it. And it’s great reheated the next day. 820 W. Jackson Blvd.; 312-714-1001 [$15] 

PISTACHIO-CRUSTED VEAL CHOP
Vermilion
If you doubt that Latino and Indian should fuse, then dig into this luscious chop boasting complex yet restrained spiciness. The nut-crusted veal chop is roasted in hierbos de olor (fragrant Latino herbs) and served on channa saag (masala-seasoned spinach mixed with garbanzos) with a side of chickpea flour-coated chaat onion rings. 10 W. Hubbard St.; 312-527-4060 [$29]

BEER JAM-GLAZED QUAIL
Vie
Bronzed from the house-made beer jam glaze and surprisingly tender, Vie’s wood-grilled quail lies invitingly on a bed of wilted, shredded white cabbage. Even better, it’s accompanied by grape-size marinated white turnips and melted Pleasant Ridge Reserve aged Gruyère, a single-herd cow’s milk cheese—a dazzling combo of refined and earthy flavors. 4471 Lawn Ave., Western Springs; 708-246-2082 [$14]

PAPPARDELLE WITH TURKEY MEATBALLS
West Town Tavern
It may be light on the pasta, but you won’t miss it on this autumnal dish: It comes loaded with perfectly cooked fall mushrooms, roasted butternut squash, and generous meatballs. Tarragon seasons the vegetables while shallots help flavor the turkey, and the unique addition of mint sends the taste buds soaring. It’s a dish you’ll want to cozy up to. 1329 W. Chicago Ave.; 312-666-6175 [$18.50] 

COUSCOUS SALAD
Winston’s Market
Sweet golden raisins and toasted almonds give texture and a traditional Mediterranean flair to this hearty side dish. Color, acidity, and spice come from tiny cubes of red onion and a slightly sweet red bell pepper, and minced herbs emphasize the freshness of the other ingredients. But it’s the dressing—a seamless blend of olive oil, sherry vinaigrette, and honey—that pushes the envelope. 3440 N. Southport Ave.; 773-327-6400 [$9/pound]

WAGYU BEEF
Yoshi’s Café
Yoshi’s chatty waiters bring out five uncooked beef brochettes, a mini hibachi with a blazing cooking stone, and an unnecessary side bowl of yuzu-ponzu dipping sauce. They instruct you to toss the beef on for 15 seconds, flip it over, and pop it in your mouth, still sizzling. The beef is not actual wagyu from Japan, but who cares? It’s tender, nicely salted, peppered, and oiled—and delicious. 3257 N. Halsted St.; 773-248-6160 [$20] 

BLUENOSE GROUPER


Zealous
A macadamia nut crust gives beautiful texture and a savory edge to this tender, sweet, and mild fish. Pineapple vinaigrette counters with a bit more sweetness and the perfect acidic tang, and a stunningly creative side of earthy hash from cubed taro root, sautéed to a crisp with delicate little rock shrimp carries this stellar entrée to the next level. It’s surf-and-turf to the highest degree. 419 W. Superior St.; 312-475-9112 [$28]

 

Prop Stylist: Jennifer Levant   Food Stylist: Janice Bell  Food Stylist Assistant: Lisa Kuhl  Hair and Makeup: Chelo  First Assistant: Kate Cole  Second Assistant: Popo  model: laura gleason/ford chicago

Share

Edit Module

Advertisement

Edit Module
Submit your comment

Comments are moderated. We review them in an effort to remove foul language, commercial messages, abuse, and irrelevancies.

Edit Module