Easter Dining Guide

In case the overload of pastels and egg-shaped candies hasn't given it away already, Eastern is but a bunny hop away. And Easter means spring dishes. And brunch. They're as much a part of the holiday framework as Jesus, but with more carrot cake. Here's a handy guide for navigating the slew of Easter eating options on April 5 in Chicago restaurants this year. 


Bar Pastoral
Easter cheese course at Bar Pastoral

Make like a hungry bunny and bounce on over to Bar Pastoral to partake in some of their springy brunch specials on April 5. Limited-edition delicacies for the holiday include a cheese course with Zingerman's Manchester cheese, lemon scones, and blueberry-rosemary jam; country ham with potatoes, mustard greens, and poached egg; and banana pudding with caramel peanut butter, vanilla wafers, candied bacon bits, and miso. Cheese and entree are available solely for brunch, while dessert will be on hand all Easter weekend. Reservations can be made by calling Bar Pastoral.

Easter adopts an Italian accent at Osteria Via Stato. Between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., chef David DiGregorio is serving up a springy buffet of Easter goodies, including an omelet station, ciabatta French toast, sausage and vegetable strata, and a ricotta doughnut station. For kids, there's an Easter candy table as well. The cost is $39.95 per person. Children 10 and under are 50% off, and kids 5 and under are free. Reservations can be made..

If a Peruvian Easter is more your style, then Tanta is the restaurant for you. Executive chef Jesus Delgado spearheads the South American-inspired Easter brunch, featuring a la carte dishes like jalea, a Peruvian-style fried seafood dish with yucca, avocado chalaca, and cebiche sauce; and estofado de cordero, a braised lamb plate with aji panca, red wine reduction, quinoa polenta, wild mushrooms, and kale. Brunch is served from 11:00 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. and reservations are recommended. 

Expect a melange of family-friendly sweets and savories for brunch at Sepia. To start, the restaurant inundates the table with assorted breads and pastries, then guests partake in a family-style spread of smoked trout with "everything bagel spice" and Genesis Farms greens with pear, walnut, and Pleasant Ridge Reserve. Entree options include pastrami hash, croque madame, and crunchy French toast. Dessert is another family-style smorgasbord of carrot cake or chocolate Bailey's tart. The cost is $49 per adult and $28 for children. Brunch is served from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. and reservations can be made by calling the restaurant or visiting OpenTable. 

Hop on over to the Gold Coast for a festive take on Easter brunch courtesy of Tavern on Rush. Here, kids will have the opportunity to meet with the Easter Bunny himself, in between bites of stuffed French toast and breakfast pizza of course. The patio will be open, weather permitting and fingers crossed. Brunch is served from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. and reservations are recommended. 

Nothing says "happy Easter!" like a classic lamb osso bucco with asparagus and pea risotto. For meaty Easter supremacy, head over to Filini Bar & Restaurant for brunch. It's a focal point of the restaurant's holiday brunch menu, which also includes a buffet and other a la carte dishes like breakfast pizza and chilaquiles alla Filini with chicken, salsa, chili flakes, and fried egg. Filini is open on Easter from 6:30 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. 

For something a little different, think outside the Easter basket and head to Ruxbin for Easter dinner. Designed to feed two, the special Easter dinner offers guests an exclusive first look at chef Edward Kim's new spring menu via Mediterranean-inspired lamb saddle with Israeli couscous, prunes, feta, cardamom yogurt, preserved lemons, and blackberries. The cost for two people is $75 and dinner is available from 5:30 p.m. until 9:00 p.m. Reservations are recommended. 

- Matt Kirouac