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Whether you’re a casual eater or the most ardent foodie, you’ll find something you love at Chicago Restaurant Week. Starting January 30th and running through February 12th 2015, diners can enjoy $22 lunches and $33 or $44 dinners at 250 of Chicago's premier establishments. Even better for visitors taking a Free Tour by Foot, many of these restaurants are right next to a tour route! Below we highlight some of our favorites, along with a short description, address, phone number (be sure to make a reservation!), and a Restaurant Week dish we find particularly interesting (or delicious):
Participating restaurants along the Chicago Loop Walking Tour:
312 Chicago (1)
In the heart of the loop, and near where we begin our Loop Tour, 312 Chicago offers an inviting Italian atmosphere designed around the intimate private dining clubs of 1930s Chicago. Adjacent to Kimpton’s Hotel Allegro, and offering authentic food devised by Italian-born Chef Luca Corazzina, 312 is certainly worth a stop.
Vitello Tonnato Thinly Sliced Roasted Veal, Tuna Caper Aioli, Watercress
136 N. LaSalle St.
Halfway through our tour, we’ll pass Ara-On, a modern sushi bar and lounge in the heart of the Financial District. It features a beautiful dining room with tables made from 300-year-old trees as well as the self-proclaimed Longest Sushi Bar in Chicago.
Sea Bass – truffle chestnut, hon shi meji mushrooms, celery
160 W. Adams St.
Steps from Millenium Park (where our walking tour ends), Acanto is a great meeting place for those who love Italian food and an approachable dining experience.
Red Snapper- crushed fava bean and mint confit potato with ruby grapefruit sauce
18 S. Michigan Ave.
This vibrant (some might say hipster) bar and lounge, named after the Latin term for Diamond, is the newest restaurant in Chicago's landmark Silversmith Hotel. Featuring hand-crafted cocktails, small bites, and lots of energy, it’s a great place to stop after our tour!
Bronzed Walleye Pike- fingerling potato hash, wilted spinach, tiny heirlooms saffron citrus emulsion
10 S. Wabash Ave.
Participating restaurants along the Chicago Riverwalk and History Tour:
A regionally inspired eatery focused on seasonal foods and local, handcrafted drinks. American Craft Kitchen, located inside Hyatt Regency Chicago (a great place to stay as well), is the perfect stop before setting out on a Riverwalk Tour.
Blackened Catfish with Mac N’ Cheese and Collard Greens
151 E. Wacker Dr.
An Italian bistro focused on small plate Italian fare. This casual restaurant is a great place to re-energize with thin-crust pizza after a tour.
Kale & Apple Salad, Crispy Pancetta, Candied Pecans, Maple Vinaigrette
75 E. Wacker Dr.
Perfect for lunch before a tour, or dinner after one, Aria offers a contemporary twist on conventional dining with a menu of regional American cuisine prepared with local ingredients (including Garrett’s Popcorn in the featured dish below!).
Sticky Toffee Pudding- Butterscotch Ice Cream, Toffee Sauce, Garrett’s Popcorn
200 N. Columbus Dr.
Participating restaurants along the Chicago Gold Coast Tour:
Get an authentic Mexican meal in the heart of Old Town before a tour! Try the traditional Adobo entrees, handcrafted margaritas, delicious desserts, and don’t forget to order tableside guacamole!
Barbacoa style chicken tamal with kolito salsa, sour cream, fresco cheese
1610 N. Wells St
Classic bistro dining with a great wine list, excellent service, an outdoor patio, and art deco decor. This is a great way to unwind after your tour!
Duo of Chicken Liver Mousse and Country Pork Pâté, Dijon Mustard, Cornichons
1437-39 N. Wells St.
Experience authentic Parisian food in the heart of the Gold Coast. Classic & contemporary French food is served among tile floors, tin ceilings, and a beautifully handcrafted zinc bar (a great place to grab a cocktail after a tour).
Crispy whiting “en colère” Lemon Aioli
1131 N. State St.