"Chicago" by Carl Sandburg

Hog Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation's Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders

-excerpt from the poem "Chicago" by Carl Sandburg (1916)

Chicago Skyline

Chicago Skyline
The Chicago Skyline from a Near West Side highrise

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Michelin Guide - Chicago Restaurants


Back in November, Michelin released their first ever guide for Chicago restaurants.  This is a prestigious honor for the Windy City and its restaurants.  New York and San Francisco are the only two other cities in the United States to have previously been bestowed such an honor.  The fact that the guide was made is vindication that Chicago is one of the country's, and world's, top restaurant destinations.  Whether you're familiar or not with the Michelin guides, the fact of the matter is this: the restaurants represented by stars are not the sort of places that your average Chicagoan can afford to eat at on a weekly basis.  But as Chicago magazine points out, it's great PR for the City and its dining community.  And frankly, while most of these restaurants are rather expensive, they are worth saving a little extra money and visiting maybe once or twice a year (would you be willing to stay in one weekend a year to save up some extra money to eat in one of the top restaurants in Chi-Town?)

What we've done with this entry is listed the restaurants by neighborhood.  Sure, about half are in the Near North Side.  However, there are GREAT restaurants to be found in the West Loop, Wicker Park, and even Logan Square.  We'll start out with the list by star rating (3 stars being one of the top restaurants in the world, but even a 1 star rating puts the restaurant in very elite company).  Twenty-three restaurants in Chicago were honored with Michelin stars.  Let's take a look where they're at...















The asterisks next to the restaurant name reflect the number of starts bestowed upon them.  Please note that Vie (one star) is not show above, as it was the one suburban restaurant (Western Springs) that was given a Michelin star.

Beyond the 23 restaurants that received star ratings, 40 other Chicago establishments were also bestowed the honor of  "Bib Gourmand".  This is a list of restaurants that are considered great food and a great value.  Some familiar names made this list, such as Girl & the Goat, Hopleaf, and The Publican.  We're not going to break these down with maps as we did above, but they're still worth a look, especially since the link includes their respective neighborhood.
Chicago's 23 Michelin-starred restaurants from overhead.
Note: Vie (in the suburb of Western Springs) is not shown.


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