Tempo Café,

6 E Chestnut St,

Local favorite for brunch—mighty omelettes served in skillets

Rated by: Zagat, urbanspoon, trip advisor




West Egg Café,

620 N Fairbanks Ct.

312 280-8366

Another favorite—egg specialties and fresh baked goods




Pizzeria Uno,

29 E Ohio St., 312 321-1000

A favorite of visitors, said to be the originator of Chicago style deep dish




Billy Goat Tavern


430 N Michigan Ave (lower level) 312 222-1525

Famous dive burgers.  A fave of John Belushi and the Chicago tribune staffers.  Cheezborger, cheezborger. . . .






Foodlife at Water Tower—a mall of food stalls


835 N Michigan Avenue

14 different kitchens offer big bowl noodles and Asian dishes, taqueria, barbecue, organic juices, bakery treats and a coffee bar.  Fast, fresh and good.







Grand Lux Café (also dinner)


600 N Michigan

Huge menu full of good options in an over-the-top renaissance bordello setting




Downtown Dogs

804 N Rush St (at E Chicago Ave)

The classic Chicago dog, a meal in a bun but NO ketchup!




Bar Toma (also lunch)



110 E Pearson Street

312 266-3110

Best pizza in Chicago, hands down.  Top chef master Tony Mantuano creates many small plates that are each unique and so tasty. Gelato and espresso bar. Open late till 2 am.








The Gage (also lunch)


24 S Michigan

312 372-4243

An Irish gastropub across from Millenium Park.  Exuberant vibe and great food. Diners’ choice 2012 winner.





The Berghoff Café,

17 W Adams

(312) 427-3170

Faithful renditions of German classics: schnitzel, strudel, house made beer and root beer

Close to the Art Institute, Millenium Park and State Street so works for lunch too.



Heaven on Seven

600 N Michigan, second floor, (312) 280-7774  OR

111 N. Wabash - 7th Floor, off State St.

(312) 263-6443

Cajun cooking in an exuberant Mardi Gras atmosphere.  The gumbo is great







Frontera Grill,

445 N Clark St 

(312) 661-1434



Chef Rick Bayless’ tribute to real Mexican cooking.  Very popular but no reservations.  Be prepared to wait, wait, wait—that’s a three margarita wait.  Try the blood orange margarita. Well worth it.









Riccardo Trattoria


2119 N Clark Street

773 549-0038

A neighborhood Italian place, but the neighborhood is small town northern Italy.  Great food and not expensive.  All Italian waiters.







Table 52


52 W Elm St

312 573-4000

Art Smith takes fried chicken to a high art.  A favorite of Barack and Michelle, Oprah and me.  A warm southern vibe gives the food sophisticated soul.








710 N Wells St


Elegant Italian, think Venice.  A complimentary prosecco when you arrive and great pasta to follow.






720 N State St.

(312) 787-7599

Hawaiian fusion cooking, island friendly atmosphere.  Three course prix fixe menu under $40 daily.





Late night or anytime

Ghirardelli’s, Hershey’s

822 and 830 N Michigan

Pick your sweet poison—each has its devotees





Wow Bao

835 N Michigan

Asian nosh par excellence