Where to Eat Out During the Holidays: Chicago

Takashi Restaurant in Chicago.
Takashi Restaurant in Chicago. Photo © Tyllie Barbosa.

Chicago Restaurants

Blackbird

At this minimalist restaurant, chef Paul Kahan (an F&W Best New Chef 1999) and chef de cuisine Mike Sheerin use local ingredients to cook their sophisticated French-Midwestern dishes, like braised rack of lamb with pickled feta and lovage.

Plus: Paul Kahan's 5 Great Fall Beer Pairings

Custom House

Chef Shawn McClain’s restaurant in Printer Row's Hotel Blake focuses on artisanal meats, showcased in a burger topped with aged cheddar, venison carpaccio and various cuts of steak.

Open Christmas Eve.

NoMI

This restaurant at the Park Hyatt Chicago, where chef Christophe David serves contemporary French dishes, provides stunning views of Water Tower Place and Michigan Avenue's Christmas-light displays. The Christmas Day offerings include a traditional buffet with roasted chestnut soup and steamed snow-crab claws, as well as a prime rib station ($125).

Open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Table Fifty-Two

At this warm, soulful space on Chicago’s Gold Coast, Art Smith (Oprah Winfrey’s former personal chef) serves a comfort-food menu with dishes like superbly crispy buttermilk fried chicken and thin-crust pizzas baked in a wood-fired oven.

Takashi

In a cozy two-story town house in hip Bucktown, Takashi Yagihashi (an F&W Best New Chef 2000) turns out excellent American-French dishes with Japanese accents, like a divinely crispy fried chicken that’s marinated in soy sauce, ginger and garlic, then deep-fried in duck fat. The best table for large groups is number 24, tucked into a candlelit corner and reserved for parties of five or more on busy nights.

Plus: Best Restaurant Dishes of 2008: Takashi’s Duck-Fat Fried Chicken

Plus:

Great Recipes from Chicago’s Top Restaurants

Great Recipes from Chicago’s Top Restaurants

Where To Go Next: Chicago

Where To Go Next: Chicago


Holiday Dining in Other U.S. Cities:

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