Bon Appetit Names Chicago Restaurant City Of The Year


The Windy City has been named the Restaurant City of the Year by Bon Appetit magazine. The Chicago Tribune reports that the honor recognizes way more than just culinary merit. Julia Kramer, Bon Appetit’s senior editor, says the award “really gives you a sense of where the most excitement and innovation and up-and-coming talent is concentrated.” Chicago can hold its own against some of the best food cities around the country.

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Kramer notes that she’s never been as psyched as she is right now to eat in her hometown of Chicago. She lists eight reasons why “the Midwest is best” and why the Windy City was selected for The Restaurant City Of The Year.

So what stands out?

You have modern desserts at Elske and a Korean restaurant (Hanbun) inside of a suburban food court that has a seven-course tasting menu. There are perfected fine-dining spots like Mexican street food restaurant Mi Tocaya Antojería, which was named one of the top 50 Best New Restaurants In America 2017. The city has local neighborhood restaurants that are destination-worthy. Enjoy reinvented Chicago-style hot dogs at Fat Rice and you can eat at all of Paul Kahan’s restaurants. He’s the chef who was unofficially crowned the prince of Chicago’s restaurant scene. Giant, Income Tax and GT Prime are also on the list of places you need to hit on Chicago’s food scene.

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Bon Appetit named D.C. Restaurant City Of The Year in 2016 and San Francisco in 2015. Kramer notes that “where other cities fall into soulless trend cycles, Chicago has a way of generating distinctively personal restaurants.” The senior editor ate more than 1,000 meals across 40 U.S. cities to find America’s top “restaurant city.” It’s no surprise to many that the Windy City has a thriving culinary scene, but calling it out in one of the country’s most renowned and respected food publications is an impressive feat.