The name really speaks for itself – Chicago Waffles specializes in all things waffles and breakfast foods alike. To name just a few of their waffle options, you can try the original Belgian, bacon and chicken, chocolate, or red velvet. And if waffles aren’t your thing, they have plenty of eggs, pancakes, and protein standing by for your visit. Stop in for weekend brunch or a full weekday breakfast.
Chicago Waffles, 1400 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 854 8572
Come to Valencia for an unforgettable Spanish tapas experience. While they do all the traditions well and have the sangria flowing, their specialty martinis are a must-try. They got their start as Meson Sabika in suburban Naperville and have since expanded to Chicago. The atmosphere at Valencia is fun, tasty, and infectious, making it an excellent establishment for any occasion.
Tapas Valencia, 1530 S State St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 842 4444
The Bongo Room has three Chicago locations and is among the top in the city’s competitive brunch market. Opened in 1993, the restaurant has been feeding customers hearty breakfast foods even since. They’re only open until 2 p.m., so come early and try popular favorites like the breakfast burrito and croissant sandwich.
The Bongo Room, 1152 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 291 0100
This may be the only place in Chicago where you can order a pizza and pierogis, and they both taste good. Flo & Santos is part pizzeria and part Polish restaurant, and no one seems to mind the odd mashup because it works. Come with an open mind, and don’t forget to enjoy the beer garden before it’s shut down for the winter.
Flor & Santos, 1310 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 566 9817
Let your mouth take a trip to Barcelona without ever leaving Chicago at Mercat a la Planxa. You’ll get the full tapas small plates experience with Catalan-inspired cuisine and pitchers of fresh sangria. Come for weekend brunch or one of their special Vermouth-making events.
Mercat a la Planxa, 638 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 765 0524
Yolk has five locations across Chicago and more throughout the nation, and they’re all worth a visit. But the South Loop outpost is where it all began when Taki Kastanis founded Yolk in 2006. Being the first location in a successful chain makes it special, and that’s evident here. At Yolk, you’ll find upscale breakfast and lunch fare, earning it a spot on Chicago’s best brunch list. Just remember it closes every day by 3 p.m.
Yolk, 1120 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 789 9655
On the 40th floor of the Chicago Stock Exchange, you can dine as if you’re sitting in the shadows of the Eiffel Tower. Everest serves upscale French cuisine that packs a double punch of taste and ambiance. You’ll see incredible views of the cityscape from the south and enjoy food unlike anywhere else in Chicago. They feature a prix-fixe menu, offering three-, four- and seven-course options.
Everest, 440 S La Salle St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 663 8920
Since 1982, Chef Luciano has been serving the South Loop a global menu of gourmet eats. It’s a family-owned joint that caters to regulars and tourists alike. It’s a great spot for unique food that strays from the deep-fryer that’s become a Chicago staple and leans toward the healthy side. Try their jerk chicken or salmon salad, which are both customer favorites.
Chef Luciano, 49 E Cermak Rd, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 326 0062