The Best Food and Drink in Chicago’s South Loop

Chicago’s South Loop neighborhood is an extremely vibrant part of town that has been booming with new residential housing over the last 12 years.  It is also a huge tourist area consisting of the iconic Grant Park, Museum Campus (Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, Adler Planetarium), Soldier Field and Northerly Island.  Since there is so much to entertain in this neighborhood, you will need to know where to get properly fed and caffeinated.  Below are my picks for the Best Food and Drink in Chicago’s South Loop:

Note:  Since the exact boundaries of the South Loop are often disputed, my list does NOT include Chinatown, University Village or restaurants that straddle the border of The Loop and the South Loop.


Tapas Valencia


What: This colorful, family-owned, Spanish restaurant is my favorite spot in the South Loop.  The hot and cold tapas are great and there is live flamenco dancing on Saturday nights.  Brunch is served on the weekends.

Where1530 S. State St.


Awesome Spanish Restaurants Chicago restaurants Tapas Valencia South Loop



What:  This James Beard Foundation award semi-finalist is serving contemporary American cuisine.  Oysters and tasting menus are available.  I recommend the Acadia burger.

Where: 1639 S. Wabash Ave.


Manny’s Cafeteria & Delicatessen

What:  This South Loop icon has been serving traditional Continue reading

7 Awesome Spanish Restaurants to Try in Chicago

Hola, mis amigos!  Do you have an affinity or a deep-seated love for a particular country, its culture, and food?  I have!  Spain has been in my soul, if not my bloodline, since as far back as I can remember.  Growing up in New York City, I was surrounded by a large population of Spanish-speaking people from various Latin countries including Spain.  I took quickly to the Spanish language throughout middle school, high school, and college.  I have an obsessive love of olive oil and Mediterranean food.  All that said, below is my round-up of 7 Awesome Spanish Restaurants to Try in Chicago.  Check them out!
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5 Counter-Serve Spots for Healthy Salads in Chicago

Many folks deem summer days as salad days but every day is a salad day for me.  I credit my mother for raising me on an abundance of healthy salads and fresh vegetables in our daily meals.  That positive habit has carried over into my adult life.  Luckily, there is a new and growing trend of fast-casual, counter-serve locations in Chicago which offer fresh salad bowls when you don’t feel like cooking or you just do not have time.  You can order some of their signature salads or build your own cold or warm creations.  

Most of these counter-serve salad spots allow you to Continue reading

5 Romantic Chicago Restaurants that Will Impress

Whether you are hoping to impress a date or you simply want to treat yourself to a great meal and some cocktails in a lovely yet quiet setting, below are five romantic Chicago restaurants that should be on your must-do list:


Homestead On The Roof


What:  A rooftop oasis which is hidden above Continue reading

Chicago’s 6 Best Korean Restaurants You Need to Try

During the last year, I wrote two blog posts about Chicago’s fantastic Asian cuisine (Chicago’s Best Asian Restaurants – Part 1 and Chicago’s Best Asian Restaurants – Part 2).  That’s a lot of spice!  However, today I want to share my favorite spots which I deem to be Chicago’s 6 Best Korean Restaurants.  Grab your metro card and follow me!


Parachute (Avondale)


What:  Creative, elevated Korean-American cuisine by Top Chef contestant, Beverly Kim, featuring fresh, seasonal produce and a beautiful array of herbs.  I loved the Continue reading