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A’s List: Great Late-Night Fare Beyond Burgers & Pizza

There was a time when dining out after hours meant your only choices were burgers, greasy slices of pizza or burritos as big as your head. But as Chicago’s culinary landscape continues to evolve, it’s extended to the late-night crowd. These offerings from trendy and classic establishments are made from scratch, creative and certain to […]

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Oct 16, 2018 11:54 PM
Get into These New Fall Favorites

This season promises something exciting for all, whether you’re in the mood for a laid-back evening of cozy dining or flashy night on the town. Beef Wellington is served tableside at Mason. (Photo: Matthew Lowell) Found Hotel. The trendy River North hotel catering to younger travelers boasts two concepts: Mason steakhouse and Blind Dragon. The former pays homage […]

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Sep 25, 2018 05:20 AM
Where to Feast on Fried Chicken in Chicago

The sun is shining, the temperature is heating up and cravings for summery classics like fried chicken are at an all-time high, making it an apt time to round up some of Chicago’s finest variations of this all-American specialty. From new dishes to timeworn favorites, here’s where to get your fix right now. Feed: While […]

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Sep 08, 2018 10:26 PM

Los Angeles Chicago Connection

Last year, we wrote about the increasing connection between Miami and Chicago via bar and restaurant openings. This year, it looks like Chicago is sharing a special synergy with Los Angeles. The two cities have been playing a lot of back-and-forth lately in terms of concepts opening new locations in respective cities, as well as mixologists and chefs uprooting to switch time zones. Let’s take a look at this new Chicago-Los Angeles connection, shall we? 

 

Broken Shaker
Broken Shaker Chicago; photo by Adrian Gaut

 

While one of last year’s Miami connections was via Broken Shaker, this year it’s something that ties us to Los Angeles as well. The Miami-based cocktail bar opened its second outpost in River North last year, introducing an exciting new wave of culinary-inspired cocktails to the city. Now the bar is in expansion mode yet again as it polishes up its third spin-off in the City of Angels later this year. 

 

Speaking of cocktails and L.A., one of the city’s finest and most renowned mixologists, Julian Cox, made the move to Chicago recently to head up the beverage programs for Lettuce Entertain You. We wrote about him a bit here, but he just debuted his new cocktail menu at Three Dots and a Dash, which is definitely worth checking out, and we’re excited to see what he does next. 

 

In other moving news, our loss is L.A.’s gain as former Next chef Dave Beran just left the acclaimed restaurant with plans to move across the country and open his own restaurant in California. And when Jessica Largey wraps her chef residency at Intro here, she announced plans to move to L.A. to open her own restaurant as well, Simone. On the contrary, C.J. Jacobson has remained in town since moving here from L.A. for his own chef residency at Intro, and now he’s planning a Mediterranean restaurant in River North. 

 

Sprinkles
Sprinkles

 

Over the past few years, L.A.-based restaurants that have opened outposts here include JINYA Ramen Bar and of course Sprinkles, that cupcake empire with a cult following. They originated in L.A. and their Gold Coast location still routinely draws lined out the door. Coming up, some of the biggest openings on the horizon in Chicago are coming from L.A.’s IDG restaurant group, which plans local outposts of hot spots like Katana, BOA Steakhouse, and Sushi Roku. Meanwhile, Chicago’s Bow Truss coffee has expanded to L.A. with a cafe in Beverly Hills. 

— Matt Kirouac


Independent coffee roaster offers some seating, but it's really intended for bean sales and take-out: No food, no restroom, no wifi. There is a second location in River North.


Miami's wildly popular craft cocktail bar heads to Chicago with a location in River North's former Tokyo Hotel. Now an outpost of Miami's Freehand Hotel, Broken Shaker features culinary inspired...

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Intro serves as an incubator for chef talent from across the country. Every few months, a different guest chef sets up shop at the Lincoln Park restaurant, manning the kitchen...


Los Angeles-based JINYA Ramen Bar made its Chicago debut in 2015 after beginning an ambitious national expansion plan. The restaurant is often credited as one of the progenitors of the...


The first Midwest location of the Beverly Hills-based bakery that started the cupcake craze set up shop in Chicago in July 2010. Sprinkles showcases signature treats in flavors like coconut...

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