Chicago's Best Restaurants for the Best Christmas Ever

Christmas is a notoriously busy time of year, what with rushing from party-to-party, trudging through stores looking for gifts, staying up late and getting up early. That’s why, for many of us, we opt to have dinner out on either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day…or both.


When you let a restaurant handle all the cooking and the much more odious task of cleaning up, you have more time to spend with your family, which is what the holidays are all about. Many of the restaurants that are open on Christmas Eve and/or Christmas Day recognize the distinctly family nature of this holiday and tailor their menu and events to appeal to everyone.


Here are five of Chicago’s best restaurants, all scheduled to do something special for the Christmas holidays.


Siena Tavern


Siena Tavern. Chef Fabio Viviani’s Siena Tavern is expanding the offerings on Christmas Eve, with a larger menu and some off-menu dishes available only on this special night.  This limited-time menu features Chilean sea bass with a spiced sweet potato puree, fregola seafood salad with fresh shrimp and bay scallops, as well as filet mignon topped with a veal demi-glace. For dessert, a butterscotch crème brulee. If you’re a fan of Siena Tavern, you will want to see what Chef Fabio is doing on Christmas.


Shaw’s Crab House. On Saturday, December 21, Santa and Mrs. Claus will stop by to have photos taken with families. While you wait to be snapped with the couple of the moment, you can feast upon the full – and justly famous – Shaw’s Crab House brunch, which includes all the traditional breakfast items as well as shellfish and seafood stations.


Artango Steakhouse and Bar. On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, Artango Steakhouse and Bar is offering diners live Latin music and a three-course prix fixe menu.  Appetizers include ahi tuna ceviche, endive salad and lobster soup; entrées might be grilled Muscovy duck breast, quinoa risotto, salmon or ribeye; and for dessert, flan and chocolate mousse, as well as other options. With the music and dancing one usually finds at Artango Steakhouse and Bar, it always seems like a holiday celebration at this Argentinian restaurant…on Christmas, it’s even more festive.


Lawry's The Prime Rib


Bistronomic. Open on Christmas Eve for brunch, lunch and dinner. Bistronomic will be serving for brunch a two-course meal with bottomless mimosas; the menu will include ahi tuna Nicoise salad, classic steak and frites; for dinner, Chef Martial Nougier will offer roasted rack of lamb, seared Maine diver scallops and hand cut fettucine with Maine lobster. For those who feel the holiday calls for excess, you can add a charcuterie board. Bistronomic will also be celebrating Hanukkah from December 22 until December 30.


Lawry’s The Prime Rib. Lawry’s The Prime Rib, housed in the fine old McCormick mansion, seems like the best possible choice for a holiday get-together. Every Saturday in December, the “man in the red velvet suit” will be arriving to have lunch with local kids and their families.  In addition to a special three-course lunch, you can have your photo taken with the great man while you dine to the tunes of strolling carolers. During the Christmas season, Lawry’s the Prime Rib is the place to be.