MOST STRIKING DÉCOR
112 W. Hubbard St.; 312-222-4940
Three sprawling levels of steel, glass, and brick: Epic looks like the kind of soaring, stunning loft party you’re never invited to.
BEST EGGPLANT PARMESAN
8 E. First Ave., Hinsdale; 630-734-9400
Far from the usual greasy brick of sauce and cheese, this fresh parmigiana di melanzane boasts sharp, nuanced flavors.
JUICIEST KOREAN SHORT RIBS
T-Bones Steak House
1890 W. Main St., St. Charles; 630-762-0200
Chargrilled to caramelized perfection, these juicy, tender/chewy ribs steal the show at a west suburban steak house.
WILDEST SLOPPY JOE
Longman & Eagle
2657 N. Kedzie Ave.; 773-276-7110
A feisty concoction of wild boar, fried sage, thin and crisp onion rings, and pickled jalapeño adds up to a sloppy Joe well worth the mess.
MOST COMFORTING FRIED CHICKEN
305 S. Happ Rd., Northfield; 847-784-9200
Golden fried chicken, hand-cut fries, and creamy coleslaw: It’s like Sunday dinner and a backyard picnic rolled into one.