Chicago is known for its love of meat, whether it's the meat-and-potatoes classics beloved by many a Midwesterner or the beef sandwiches that skyrocketed The Bear to fame. And this also holds true for steakhouses, of which Chicago boasts more than its fair share.
But lest you think the restaurants below are all carbon copies of one another, rest assured: While they may tick some of the same boxes, the category of steakhouse offers loads of variety, and this list is proof positive of the many different ways restaurateurs can interpret the stalwart. From time-tested steakhouses oozing retro charm to newfangled spots leaning into the maximalist aesthetic, from restaurants dealing in stalwart Americana to spots taking their influence from international traditions and flavors, from spots dry-aging everything in-house to places sourcing each individual cut from a different expert purveyor ... only one thing is certain: This list of some of Chicago's best steakhouses has something on it for everyone.
Read more: The Best Steakhouse In Every State
Maple & Ash
Lauded by the Michelin Guide as "Chicago's buzziest steakhouse," this restaurant is known for its generous cuts of dry-aged beef cooked over the wood-fired hearth and served to the see-and-be-seen masses — often alongside wine from the 5000-bottle wine program Wine Enthusiast called one of the country's best. The menu from two-Michelin-star Chef Danny Grant offers cheeky nods at steakhouse classics like the house wedge salad with crispy-glazed bacon and blue cheese or the beef carpaccio, here made with Wagyu beef, king crab, truffle, and caviar and served with warm brown butter brioche. A selection of steaks ranging from filet mignon to bone-in ribeye is sure to tantalize carnivores. For an extra special experience, consider opting for a choice from the "Butcher's Reserve," which may include a 45-day dry-aged tomahawk steak or drunken Wagyu from Yamaguchi, Japan.
The dining room replete with deep-set leather couches is the perfect place from which to take in the scene, with clubby music punctuating the delivery not just of steaks but also of tantalizing options from the sea, including wood-fired seafood piled high in an impressive tower. "A combo of hip and elegant with a topping of fun" is how one Tripadvisor reviewer described this spot. So, if that's your vibe, don't delay in scoring a reservation.
El Che Steakhouse & Bar
If you prefer your steak with international flair, look no further than Argentinian El Che in the trendy West Loop. Within the minimalist, dark-tiled dining room with high stools surrounding a central bar area, Chef John Manion's 12-foot custom-built live-fire grill brings out the best in specialties, ranging from American Wagyu options to Black Angus sourced from Creekstone Farms in Kansas. You can also take it all in at the Chef's Counter or Hearth Table located in clear view of the kitchen.
The options here are inspired by the asados of Argentina, where Chef Manion grew up, but there's a load of modern flair about. Whether it's a 14-ounce bone-in filet or a 20-ounce porterhouse from Texas, options are simply kissed by the flame and served with smoked salt and chimichurri. Aside from the consequential steak menu, you'll also find grilled seafood like head-on shrimp with scallion-lime aioli and salsa macha or grilled marrow bone with gremolata and horseradish, not to mention house-made beef-fat fries to go along with whatever mains you choose. A bottle from the 100% South American wine list is sure to accompany your choices to a T.
In West Town, Boeufhaus seeks to marry old-world techniques and modern style for a steakhouse suffused with European inspiration. French influence and a soupçon of German inspiration are tantamount in crafting a menu featuring everything from steak-frites with béarnaise sauce to steak tartare to a 30-ounce dry-aged t-bone steak. Classic steakhouse appetizers like shrimp cocktail exist alongside cheffier offerings like short rib beignets, while French brasserie classics like escargots and French onion soup round off the offering nicely.
Chef-owners Brian Ahern and Jamie Finnegan originally set out, with Boeufhaus, to craft a space that felt like a "sincere gesture to neighbors and local foodies first." And their efforts have paid off in spades. Diners love Boeufhaus, dubbing it a really special place. "Heard great things about Boeufhaus for almost like a decade and finally tried it," writes one Yelp reviewer. "I still craved that taste of steak the next day." If that's not a rave review, we're not sure what is.
GT Prime Steakhouse
Opulent, luxurious, sleek, and chic — all are words Condé Nast Traveler uses to describe this luxurious steakhouse known for local sourcing, seasonal ingredients, and an unsurprisingly meat-focused menu. But first, start with choices from the raw bar, which may include anything from oysters to king crab to Maine lobster, the latter of which is served with an intriguing combo of drawn butter and beer mustard. Stalwart steakhouse starters offer subtle plays on the classics, like a wedge salad with Maytag blue cheese or thick-cut miso-glazed bacon.
The steak menu is consequential, to say the least, ranging from Japanese A5 ribeye to a dry-aged prime porterhouse, with a few more avant-garde offerings like a bison tenderloin or a grass-fed ribeye from Strauss farms. The aptly named "Carnivore" boasts a panoply of chef-selected cuts including filet, NY strip, and more. Choose from a host of house-made sauces and sides like classic creamed spinach or truffle tater tots with Brie cream, and you'll understand why one TripAdvisor reviewer gushed that the restaurant is, quite simply, "divine."
For excellent steak in a luxe ambiance, look no further than Steak 48, with its wide range of options from both sea and land. The meats are responsibly farmed and wet-aged for 48 days, and the menu notably features a range of steak sizes, from an eight-ounce petit filet mignon to a 22-ounce behemoth of a 45-day dry-aged bone-in ribeye. Sides may include a luxurious mac and cheese featuring king crab and rock shrimp or a creative corn crème brûlée.
This restaurant has certainly proven divisive for some, with a minimum per person spend and dress code restricting printed t-shirts, hats, and exposed undergarments notably gaining attention from Eater. But most reviewers love the special occasion locale, with reviewers on Yelp dubbing the food "really yummy" and the service "outstanding." And seeing as its success has spawned outposts in Beverly Hills, Charlotte, Del Mar, Houston, and Philly, it's safe to say this spot has conquered the heart of many a carnivore across the country.
Gene & Georgetti
Gene & Georgetti is one of Chicago's oldest steakhouses, a long-time carnivorous destination of choice for everyone from Frank Sinatra to Russell Crowe. Since 1941, this spot has dazzled diners who applaud its "old world service" and "beautifully appointed hard wood paneled bar" on Yelp. It's known for serving up an assortment of Italian-accented dishes from fried calamari and house-made casoncelli pasta with three different meats to Robert Duvall's favorite garbage salad with salami, jumbo shrimp, and provolone. And if it's steak you seek, they've more than got you covered.
The USDA Prime steaks and chops on Gene & Georgetti's menu are wet-aged for at least 21 days before being char-broiled at a whopping 1400 F — exactly the way the spot has been cooking its beef for over 80 years. Choose from among classic cuts like New York strip, filet mignon, or porterhouse, or opt instead for one of the shareable behemoths in the La Bistecca Fiorentina category like the dry-aged 38-ounce tomahawk or the 48-ounce t-bone the steakhouse refuses to serve cooked any further than medium-rare. With folks this serious about their steaks, trust us: You're in good hands.
Reality TV stars Giuliana and Bill Rancic first opened RPM Steak in Chicago in 2015, and ever since, the spot has dazzled locals with what the Michelin Guide calls a "warm, sleek, and moneyed" vibe and a standout selection of steaks from around the world. On the menu, you may find Australian Wagyu from Westholme in Queensland, rare imported Chateau Uenae Snow Beef from Hokkaido, "signatures" like the Duke (a 10-ounce ribeye filet), or the Michelin inspector's favorite: the "mighty" 24-ounce Prime dry-aged cowboy.
Tripadvisor reviewers heap praise on this "sensational" spot, especially if you're dining solo, as bar seating is comfortable, and service is a dream. Be sure to save room for maximalist desserts like the 14k chocolate cake — a devil's food cake topped with chocolate ganache, chocolate glaze, and edible gold leaf — or the baked Alaska one customer claimed was "as wonderful as it was theatrical."
Bavette's Bar And Boeuf
Steakhouses are a mainstay in River North, but Bavette's stands a notch above the rest, according to the Infatuation, which cites two major reasons why this spot is one of the city's best: the truly excellent food and the intimate ambiance that, according to the reviewer, make it "a terrible spot for corporate outings, ensuring Bavette's never gets stale."
It is within the cave-like dining room, then, that diners at Bavette's find their bliss. The steakhouse's menu boasts subtle French flair, with oldie-but-a-goodie options including steak tartare, baked goat cheese, and salade lyonnaise. The consequential steak offerings include everything from steak-frites to a behemoth of a bone-in 42-day-dry-aged ribeye to roasted bone marrow served with caramelized red onion jam. The freshly baked sourdough from Bavette's Bakery is the ideal accompaniment. It's no wonder so many Redditors have dubbed Bavette's their favorite steak spot in the city.
Fioretta is a relative newcomer to Chicago's dining scene, but it's certainly got gall, if you ask Eater, which claims this Fulton Market steakhouse "wants to redefine steakhouses." Old-school meets contemporaneity at this spot boasting a stylized approach to classic '50s allure, from the black-and-white Italian marble floor to the green mohair booths, from the on-site humidor to the stage perfect for live music.
The menu too boasts a welcome blend of old and new. Classic appetizers like shrimp scampi and Caesar salad are joined by more novel creations like savory plays on Italian desserts like zeppole and cannoli, the former served with caviar and the latter with Wagyu tartare. When it comes to steaks, diners can dig into humanely raised Black Angus beef grilled over white oak in the restaurant's custom hearth and finished with Wisconsin grass-fed butter. Choose from among hand-cut filet, olive-fed Wagyu New York strip, and more. A full menu of non-steak main and from-scratch pastas fleshes out the offerings considerably and ensures that no one leaves this spot disappointed.
Swift & Sons
In a former meat and produce warehouse, Swift & Sons takes full advantage of the location's storied past. Diners pass through the raw bar called "Cold Storage" before reaching the contemporary dining room where a panoply of meaty options are on offer. Choices may include anything from eight ounces of USDA Prime filet mignon to a whopping 22-ounce dry-aged ribeye.
Wagyu is a bona fide go-to, whether Australian or Japanese. As a special treat, a limited number of Wagyu ribeye caps are on offer each night. Or you could always opt for the Wagyu flight, which features an A5 cap and strip, as well as Australian 8/9 ribeye. Special touches like the Old Fashioned cocktail trolley and dessert trolley lend Old World charm to this spot and help it stand out from other similar spots. "From walking in, sitting at the bar, the table service, food, drink, great atmosphere and energy, excellent overall," raves one reviewer on Tripadvisor, who notes that the restaurant surpassed even their expectations from previous visits.
BLVD Steakhouse takes inspiration from Hollywood's Sunset Boulevard. The golden era of dining and entertainment is certainly evoked in its old-school luxe and charm, from the bright and airy dining room to the massive full-season patio with its enchanted secret garden appeal to the phenomenal service. The food is enticing as well, with many reviewers fawning over the consequential complimentary bread service — a good indication of the excellence that follows.
The menu is far more consequential than beef alone, with international plays on steakhouse stalwarts like steak tartare with sriracha aioli, or a wedge salad with maple bacon and pickled shallots. When it comes to the steaks, sourcing is the mot d'ordre: Celebrity Chef/Partner Joe Flamm works with Allen Brothers in Nebraska for his Prime skirt steak, with Creekstone in Kansas for his filet mignon, and with Meats By Linz to source his 50-day dry-aged porterhouse from Illinois. It makes all the difference.
Located within the Bank of America tower, Bazaar Meat by José Andrés definitely dresses to impress. The intimate dining room designed by Lázaro Rosa-Violán from Barcelona surrounding an open kitchen can be found just upstairs from Bar Mar, the Spanish chef's seafood-focused establishment, and upon being greeted with a welcome cocktail, diners immediately get the sense they've entered a secret club.
Bazaar Meat's menu is organized around a custom-built Spanish Ipsor oven where the team cooks up everything from suckling pig to ribeye chuletón to Vaca Vieja ribeye (a Spanish tradition meaning "old cow"). Japanese Wagyu and Kobe beef are prepared tableside on an ishiyaki stone, while cheffier options include classic steak Diane with a modern "Parmesan air" flair or coffee-rubbed Wagyu hanger steak with pearl onions and passion fruit. Raw offerings from the meat bar like tartare or carpaccio, and a build-your-own buckwheat caviar cone really propel this spot to the next level of luxury.
Prime & Provisions
This glitzy steakhouse is definitely ticking all the maximalist boxes, from the barrel-vaulted ceilings bedecked with chandeliers to the two-story wine tower. It's the perfect setting in which to dig into the big, bold flavors you'll find all over Executive Chef Partner Joseph Rizza's menu — everything from a majestic shellfish tower to top-notch roasted bone marrow.
Appetizers skew luxe in a big way: Think grilled king crab with matsutake shoyu to black truffle-potato croquette and caviar-bedecked potato skins. USDA Prime Black Angus steaks are either wet- or dry-aged and finished with Wisconsin grass-fed butter for even more richness. Choose from among a 16-ounce New York strip, multiple sizes of hand-cut filet mignon, or a center-cut 36-ounce porterhouse for two. Your choice of sauce and side complete the offering, with choices like broccoli sautéed with first-press olive oil or mac and cheese the menu describes as decadent. "This was seriously one of the best dining experiences I've ever had!" gushes one reviewer on Tripadvisor. Pay a visit to see if you agree.
St. Clair Supper Club
Alinea Group's St. Clair has a mission wholly divorced from Chef Grant Achatz totally modernist Alinea, and that's what makes it so great. This restaurant unironically seeks to revitalize the classic midwestern "supper club" without removing an ounce of its charm, and if you ask the Michelin Guide, they've more than fulfilled the promise. This spot is cozy-core to the max, with low ceilings and comfy green chairs inviting diners to belly up to a slightly more casual play on the steakhouse that more than delivers when it comes to flavors.
The steak menu is comparatively short as compared to other members of the category: Just prime rib, served medium rare and cut to order, with your choice of house-made sauces and an optional add-on of Yorkshire pudding. Appetizers and sides offer slightly cheffy plays on classics like what TimeOut dubs an "exceptional" shrimp cocktail or a mind-blowing creamed corn Chicago Magazine termed "American-style Proustian ecstasy."
The Barn Steakhouse
Founded by Amy Morton, daughter of restaurateur Arnie Morton of Morton's Steakhouse fame, The Barn Steakhouse is not just an ode to dear old Dad — it's also Amy's way of bringing her own style and approach to downtown Evanston, beginning with its namesake locale. Converted from a 19th-century barn once used by Borden Milk to house the horses for its horse-and-buggy milk delivery service, these days, the storied, red-brick barn has been converted into a gorgeous dining room boasting high ceilings bedecked with a beautiful chandelier and an industrial-chic vibe.
On the menu: heritage Angus beef cooked according to time-tested tradition by James Beard-winning chef Debbie Gold, served with red wine demi-glace and German marrow butterball potatoes. Choose from a host of toppings like blue cheese or truffle butter, and add a creative side like Brussels sprouts with arugula-pistachio pesto or creamed Swiss chard with Cipollini onions. Start with the signature Mortini, and be sure to save room for Arnie's Chocolate Velvet Cake for dessert.
Read the original article on Mashed.