The Insider’s Guide To Chicago Food | The Travelling Table

Travel allows you to experience in a different reality than your own; to sample food, culture and activities that would otherwise be unavailable to you. These kind of local experiences are what we strive to find on The Travelling Table and while we were in Chicago, Illinois we strove to discover the best local food spots in town in order to share them with you.

Parson’s Chicken & Fish

Fun and Affordable

Chicago Parson's Chicken & Fish | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) Chicago Parson's Fish and Chips | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

If it is a sunny day, Parson’s Chicken & Fish in Logan Square is the perfect place to grab a locally sourced bite and enjoy it under the shade of red and white umbrella at the picnic tables on the patio. People bring their children and their pets, laughter saturates the air and as you indulge in some truly delicious fish and chips or hush puppies, you feel like a local too.

2952 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Palmer Square

Scofflaw

Best Cocktails

Chicago Scofflaw | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

Every local we met suggested we have a drink at Scofflaw, a beautifully designed bar with affordable drinks and eats in Palmer Square that was just voted one of the best bars in Chicago by Esquire Network. They focus on gin based drinks such as the Elements Of Style (St George Terroir gin, Saler’s Aperitif, honey, lemon, egg white, chamomile bitters and toasted coriander), but also have beers, wine and other spirits on hand as well.

3201 W Armitage Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Palmer Square

J&M Tap

Most Authentic

We would move to Chicago just to frequent this locally owned establishment. The same charismatic, Chicagoan accented man has owned the bar for over 40 years and the same patrons visit for drinks and storytelling everyday. There is no sign over the door and the building itself is an unassuming brick affair that hides a true local gem.

957 N Leavitt St Chicago, IL 60622

Neighborhood: Ukrainian Village

Rich’s Deli

Ethnic Choice Chicago Ukranian Village Polish Market Rich's Deli | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

Chicago Ukranian Village Polish Market Butter | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

This is the kind of place we could get happily lost in for hours, trying to translate the polish ingredient list, exclaiming over the Birch water and eavesdropping on the Ukrainian Village residents as they did their routine shopping there. It is a treasure box of Eastern European delicacies and locals assured us their soups are amazing.

857 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL60622

Neighborhood: Ukrainian Village

George’s Hot Dogs

A Chicago Icon

George's Hot Dogs | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) George's Hot Dog | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

In order to experience a local staple, head to Chicago’s oldest hot dog stand, George’s Hot Dogs, which has been family owned and operated in the same space for the last 67 years. George’s daughter now runs the restaurant with her husband (coincidentally, also named George) and they make everything to order with such fresh ingredients that sometimes locals buy their tomatoes at there!

1876 N. Damen Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Bucktown 

Sultan’s Market

Best Value

Sultan's Market | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) Sultan's Market Falafal | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

Sultan’s Market had the kind of authentic charm that is difficult to reproduce. It contains a buffet, a take-out section and beautiful booths to sit in while you taste what has to be the best falafel pita sandwich we have ever tasted.

It is a family run establishment started by May Ramli 12 years ago which is now also co-run with her son, Shadi. The market is a Chicagoan local’s haven for grabbing an inexpensive and delicious meal outside of the touristy scope and trust us when we say, it is well worth a visit.

2057 W North Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Wicker Park

Black Dog Gelato

Artistinal Desserts

Black Dog Gelato | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) Black Dog Gelato Goat Cheese Cashew Caramel Gelato | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

Jessica Oloroso was a pastry chef at a celebrated Chicago restaurant before she decided to focus on her love for gelato by opening Black Dog Gelato, which is named after her beloved black dog, Kaya. As soon as the black and pink painted building came into sight, we were in love. The gelato is mixed everyday in-house and along with traditional flavors there are also unique offerings such as the Goat Cheese Cashew Caramel and Avocado Crème Fraîche, both of which we loved.

859 North Damen Ave, Chicago IL 60622

Neighborhood: Wicker Park

Revolution Brewery

Best Brews Revolution Brewery Logo | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

Chicago Revolution Brewery | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

This is definitely the coolest place in Chicago to grab a beer.  The ambiance is fantastic, with intricately carved fist beer taps and bar details and graphic designs that bring to mind underground movements and street art. Their craft beers are award winning and delicious, from their most popular Anti-Hero IPA to their Eugene, Hugene, Wugene Porter trio. The man behind Revolution is local food celebrity Josh Deth, who also owns the equally amazing restaurant Handlebar and manages the Logan Square Farmers Market.

2323 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Wicker Park

Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits

The Travelling Table Favourite

Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) Bang Bang Pie Chicago Pie Service | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

We would eat at Bang Bang, the locally renowned pie shop in Logan Square, every day if we lived in Chicago and many locals do. As much as we love the pillowy biscuits and the flaky, unique pies, it is owner/host Michael Ciapciak who greets locals and tourists alike with a warm and unhurried smile that really makes this place special. Bang Bang’s aim is to create the feel of a classic neighborhood bakery and coffee shop, and their gracious hospitality fits the bill perfectly.

2051 N California Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Logan Square

Chicago Diner

Best Special Diet Restaurant

Chicago Diner Vegan | The Travelling Table (1 of 1) Chicago Diner Vegan Milkshakes | The Travelling Table (1 of 1)

They have vegan milkshakes in a variety of amazing flavors (we recommend the Mocha!) so, of course, we were sold on the iconic Chicago Diner right away. Meat Free since 1983 is the restaurants slogan and their experience with vegetarian cooking is evident in the beautifully prepared and flavorful options they provide.

2333 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago, IL 60647

Neighborhood: Logan Square

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