January 2021 hotlist
Photograph: Garrett Sweet

1 Sugargoat

WHAT Stephanie Izard’s latest project: a bakery that takes inspiration from childhood eats
WHY Cheez-It cake? Chocolate shake french fry pie? This menu is pure uncut Izard.
WHERE 820 W. Randolph St., West Loop


Hot List January 2021
Photograph: Kristen Mendiola

2 Giant

WHAT A food truck with bites from Giant and sister spot Chef’s Special Cocktail Bar
WHY Save yourself the drive to two restaurants and load up on butter crust pizza, crab Rangoon, and Negronis when the truck rolls through your neighborhood.
WHERE giantrestaurant.com for locations


Photograph: Anthony Barlich

3 Brite

WHAT Two former Publican chefs serving doughnuts and other treats at Metric Coffee
WHY Whether your tastes run to vegan Earl Grey sticky buns or olive-fennel gougères, Brite has you covered.
WHERE 2021 W. Fulton St., West Town


Photograph: Courtesy of Lost Lake

4 Lost Lake

WHAT Monthly cocktail and rum subscriptions from the tropical bar
WHY The rum pours come with plenty of tasting notes, so if you spend the winter schooling yourself on the spirit, you can show off your knowledge when the bar reopens.
WHERE 3154 W. Diversey Ave., Logan Square


Photograph: Cornelius Bouknight

5 Pizza Finestra

WHAT A Tuesday and Wednesday lunchtime pop-up at Superkhana with überthin Roman pizzas
WHY Get the crispy crust topped with olive oil and tomato (or have it made into a mortadella sandwich).
WHERE 3059 W. Diversey Ave., Logan Square


Photograph: Starr Nordgren

6 Gretel

WHAT Little Bad Wolf brings its something-for-everyone philosophy to Logan Square.
WHY Where else can you pick up pork belly nachos, frozen Irish coffee, and oyster-shucking kits in a single visit?
WHERE 2833 W. Armitage Ave.


Photograph: Timmy Risden Photography

7 Kinzie Cucina Italiana

WHAT An Italian-focused virtual kitchen out of Kinzie Chophouse
WHY You can’t eat steak every night, so branch out with spicy tuna arancini and pork saltimbocca.
WHERE 400 N. Wells St., River North


Photograph: Jason Little

8 How Bao Dat

WHAT Chuck Graham’s virtual eatery is all about the Chinese buns.
WHY His bao cross borders with fillings like jerk chicken with kimchi and beef with gochujang barbecue sauce.
WHERE 2537 S. Wabash Ave., Bronzeville


Photograph: Rjay Ricalde

9 Side Project Coffee

WHAT A coffee shop that highlights side projects, from food to art
WHY Sip ube chai and snack on doughnuts from Downstate Donuts as you start your own side hustle.
WHERE 5139 N. Damen Ave., Ravenswood


Photograph: Benjamin Stern Photography

10 Cluck It

WHAT A virtual hot chicken restaurant from two fine-dining vet
WHY Burn your tongue on nuggets, wings, or thighs — or try their invention: Nashville hot chicken–fried lobster.
WHERE 2537 S. Wabash Ave., Bronzeville