Chicago has a renowned culinary scene and several dining options that you might explore. In and around the Lincoln Park area, you can experience global cultures and dishes without leaving town. You’ll find restaurants with offerings from almost every continent, depending on the occasion and what you’re in the mood for, from Indian to Peruvian cuisine and everything in between. Let’s look at some of the best ethnic cuisines in the area and what you might expect when dining at these locations.
Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio
Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio is an authentic Italian restaurant where you can enjoy pasta made fresh. The restaurant has received rave reviews from publications like The Chicago Tribune and Bon Appétit magazine. For a quick bite, you can try one of their sharable piattini dishes like the burrata e ham or a pasta dish like the cacio whey pepe pasta with mancini bucatini, pecorino medoro, ricotta whey, and four peppercorn blend.
DeColores is a Mexican restaurant in the neighborhood of Pilsen that has walls decorated with local art. This authentic cuisine offers everything from guacamole to savory seafood. The recipes are family recipes from their Mexican upbringing. You might try pozole with cucumber salsa or coctel de camaron (shrimp cocktail) if sharing with friends. For dessert, you might consider their pastel tres leches, which is a delicious type of cake.
The Berghoff is a historic restaurant in Chicago founded by German immigrants as a beer stand for the World’s Fair in 1893. This German restaurant has a large beer menu and classic dishes like pierogies, Bavarian pretzels, potato pancakes, and bratwurst. For a meal, you might consider one of their schnitzel varieties, like the Jäger schnitzel or wiener schnitzel.
Joy Yee Noodles
Joy Yee Noodles is a restaurant with several locations in the Chicago area, offering traditional and modern Asian dishes. You can grab something classic, like crab rangoon or lo mein, or get adventurous with something like the beef cubes. If you’re just passing through, you can grab an authentic bubble tea for the road.
Tango Sur is an Argentinian steakhouse on North Southport Avenue where you can try several different cuts of meat or other common Argentinian cuisines. You can share a classic antipasto or empanadas while looking over the chef’s specials. This special menu section includes the Vesuvius steak, which is prime steak stuffed with spinach, cheese, and white wine sauce served with garlic, Argentine-style potatoes.
Hema’s Kitchen is an Indian restaurant where you can explore different spices and dishes. With many vegetarian options, you can explore something classic like the Navratan vegetable curry. If you’re feeling adventurous, you might try the spicy local favorite, the lamb vindaloo, cooked in gravy with potatoes, coconut, and curry leaves.
If you’re looking for Mediterranean cuisine, you might stop in at Turquoise Restaurant for Turkish-inspired dishes. For an appetizer, you might share one of their unique flatbreads. If you want to try several Mediterranean bites, you can get a combination platter. Specials include delicious options like a rack of lamb and ossobuco alla Milanese, which is a braised beef shank.
Mi Terra is another Mexican restaurant where you can enjoy freshly grilled meat and seafood. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, this restaurant allows you to grab something at any time throughout the day. This restaurant has a huge menu for lunch and dinner, or you can host a private event with a buffet or catering, where you can order trays of chicken, beef, and other options.
90 Miles Cuban Cafe
You can grab some authentic Cuban food and drinks at one of 90 Miles Cuban Cafe’s Chicago locations. You can grab a quick bite with dishes like fried yuca and plantain varieties or entrees like the savory ropa vieja or a classic Cuban sandwich. To keep you going through your busy day, consider grabbing a cafe Cubano or a cortadito for some extra energy.
At Athena Restaurant, you can explore a large menu of traditional and modern Greek dishes. Share some dips like classic hummus, tzatziki, or skordalia with fresh pita to taste the unique herbs and spices in each. With multiple floors and a patio, you can enjoy a gyro whether you’re dining solo or celebrating a birthday. For dessert, you won’t regret the flaky baklava.
Tiffin the Indian Kitchen
Tiffin the Indian Kitchen is a great upscale dining option whether you’re wrapping up the workweek or on a business lunch. You’ll activate all of your senses with curry dishes and menu items grouped by region in India. For example, you might try the Manchurian Gobi from the Indian-Chinese section if you’re looking for a vegetable blend cooked in a Manchurian sauce.
Ethiopian Diamond hones in on the importance of food in Ethiopian culture with its traditional dishes and robust flavors. In Edgewater, this restaurant features sambusa to start and several combination platters for you to try different meats. For a spicy option, you might try the doro wat, which includes marinated chicken legs in a homemade sauce. There are also milder options for those with a more sensitive palette.
Tanta is a Peruvian restaurant with classic dishes like rice and potatoes that mix sauces and herbs for unique flavors. Make a reservation or book a private party to enjoy this cuisine and atmosphere. If sharing with others, you might get the pollo a la brasa, which includes a full rotisserie chicken with several sauces and side dishes to enjoy. There are many options on the menu that allow you to share with others.
Whether you want a type of food you had while on vacation around the world or just want to explore new flavors and cultures, check out any of these restaurants when you’re in the area. Most of these have several dining options, like dine-in, takeout, and catering, so you can enjoy them on every occasion. With the kids or on a date night, restaurants like these can make you feel like you’re not in Chicago anymore. Contact us and let us know if we missed anything we should put on this list.