Top Spots For Under-the-Radar Breakfast Menus

Little known fact: Chicago hotels downtown are surprising hotbeds for under-the-radar breakfast menus. Whether you're a guest or a passerby, there are breakfast sandwiches to be eaten, juices to be sipped, and brioche sticks with maple crystals to be relished. Here are a few top picks for some of Chicago hidden breakfast gems.   

JW Marriott
Breakfast at the JW Marriott Chicago

JW Marriott Chicago: You know the JW Marriott for its lustrous glory and architectural prowess in the heart of the Loop. You love it for The Florentine, that hearty hug of an Italian restaurant nestled on the second floor. But pasta and pizza do not a good breakfast make (usually). But the hotel is also home to a little known breakfast secret with a wholesome, holistic bent. The hotel's sunshine-y Lobby Lounge features a raw juice bar brimming with freshly pressed nutrition, along with healthful made-to-order breakfast fare like spinach-packed egg white sandwiches and steel-cut Irish oatmeal flecked with dried fruit and toasted walnuts.

State and Lake Chicago Tavern: Classic American fare gets modernized at State and Lake Chicago Tavern, home to some damn fine dining at the nexus of the State Street shopping district. Located on the ground floor of theWit Hotel, State and Lake features an ample breakfast menu of familiar flavors both decadent and refreshing. Along with butter-rich croissants and breakfast pastries, there's pastrami hash, bread pudding French toast, a Tavern Benedict with black pepper hollandaise and ham hock, chicken chorizo skillets, and more. Don't miss the banana-date smoothie with rice milk, cacao, and almond butter. 

Glazed & Infused: One of the biggest breakfast surprises downtown may very well be Glazed & Infused's River North location. Tucked inside the Courtyard Marriott, Glazed & Infused is known primarily for its killer doughnuts and its equally habit-forming coffee, prime fodder for dunking. But what you may not know is that Glazed & Infused recently introduced a full-fledged breakfast sandwich menu, featuring a bevy of savory options to offset the sugar binge. Try the sausage-egg-cheese sandwich with two-year cheddar and blackberry jam on a homemade biscuit. Or opt for the bagel and lox combo with cucumber yogurt, red onion, and alfalfa sprouts.

Sable Kitchen & Bar: A stone's throw from Glazed & Infused is another stellar hotel option for breakfast. Sable Kitchen & Bar is revered for its incredible cocktails and elevated bar fare served later in the day, but the breakfast deserves some of that spotlight as well. Along with an affordable, upscale breakfast buffet, the restaurant offers a thoughtful brunch menu of updated, innovative American dishes like sourdough pancakes, housemade pigs-in-a-blanket, turkey confit poutine, bacon brioche French toast with maple butter, and ginger-scallion brown fried rice and eggs. 

I|O Urban Roofscape: For something a bit more modern, swing by I|O Urban Roofscape inside the slick Godfrey Hotel in River North. Along with impeccable views of the city skyline, there's a contemporary breakfast bounty to be had. Think steak Benedict with béarnaise sauce; brioche sticks with bourbon maple syrup crystals and cinnamon-lime fluff; and sweet potato hash with golden raisins, cumin chimichurri, fried egg, and spicy brown butter-maple syrup. 

- Matt Kirouac