Chicago's Best Hotel Restaurants to Visit Now
Chicago's food scene is growing faster than ever before, and hotel restos are no exception. The best part? Most are open every day of the week and around the clock. Below is an ode to Einstein at the science-inspired Hotel EMC2 and modern-day Italian on the Mag Mile—plus four more of the city's best hotel restaurants to visit now.
Torali Italian-Steak (The Ritz-Carlton)
When the city's iconic Ritz-Carlton property underwent a $100 million revitalization, a few big perks came with it—a series of state-of-the-art amenities and the transformation of the 12th-floor lobby lounge, to name a couple. It also meant the arrival of Torali Italian-Steak, a brand-new restaurant on the property's lobby level that offers a contemporary menu of crowd-pleasing plates. Pair house-made pastas and dry-aged meats with an array of authentic Italian spirits and cocktails that incorporate them, such as the Amaro Old Fashioned, with Woodford Reserve bourbon and Amaro Montenegro.
When the Viceroy opened on Chicago's Gold Coast this fall, it brought 180 modernly outfitted rooms, the neighborhood's first rooftop pool and two buzzy social destinations: Somerset and Devereaux. Food lovers can visit both for fare from chef Lee Wolen (Boka), who has become known for thoughtful, seasonally driven plates that are as satisfying to admire as they are to eat. Kick things off with a drink at Devereaux before heading to Somerset for more substantial bites, like juniper-rubbed venison loin or whole roast chicken for two.
The Albert (Hotel EMC2)
Art and science are thoughtfully woven throughout every nook of this recently opened Streeterville hotel, from carefully curated artworks to laboratory-inspired guest rooms outfitted in luxe, 1920s-era furnishings. Its restaurant, the Albert (a nod to Einstein), aims to follow suite. A 20-seat open kitchen invites guests to witness the culinary canvas of chef Pierce Buckman, whose contemporary American fare features the likes of charred Spanish octopus with raisin-harissa purée and smoked lamb shoulder with beluga lentils.
Café Robey (The Robey)
Grupo Habita debuted its first Chicago property with this dreamy Wicker Park destination, which sits in the neighborhood's 1929 landmark Art Deco Northwest Tower. There's no shortage of hangouts—a second-floor lounge, sixth-floor pool and 13th-floor rooftop (complete with 180-degree skyline views) make up the space for hotel guests and visitors alike. For proper fuel, it's all about the ground floor's Café Robey, where chef Kevin McAllister serves hyper-seasonal and texture-driven plates (think panzanella salad with fried sourdough, or scallops with parsnip and farro risotto and parsnip chips).
City Mouse (Ace Hotel)
Ace Hotel touched down in Chicago this summer, making it the first of the Portland-based brand's properties to take root in the Midwest. As such, the team made it a point to showcase the immediate surroundings by collaborating with local artisans. That meant teaming up with local chefs Jason Vincent and Pat Sheerin for City Mouse, the all-day restaurant that showcases Brussels sprouts "cacio e pepe," goat cheese malfatti with smoked rutabaga, and beef tartare with pastrami aioli and rye crisps.
Margeaux Brasserie (Waldorf Astoria)
Francophiles rejoice at this upscale, 60-story hotel and residence, which was designed to emulate the grand hotels of Paris in the 1920s. That vibe only grows stronger at its on-site resto, Margeaux Brasserie, where there's a menu of French cuisine with a modern Midwest twist. Case in point: roast butternut squash tartine, onion soup gratiné (oxtail optional) and heirloom pumpkin velouté.
Nicole Schnitzler is a Chicago-based freelance writer who covers travel, food and drink. Follow her on Twitter at @write_to_eat.
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