Trendy Restaurants in Chicago

January 20, 2015
by Zagat Staff

These buzzy Chicago hotspots are currently on everyone's radar.

Tanta Chicago
River North · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.3 · Service 4.4

"Justifiably popular" for "memorable" , "amazingly delicious" Peruvian fare and "terrific, unusual cocktails" (the "ceviches and pisco sours are a must" ), this River North "gem" from chef Gastón Acurio also rates for "fabulous" , "attentive" service; the "colorful" setting is "full of energy" (and "noise" ) so some prefer the "beautiful" , if "hard-to-get-into" open-air rooftop.
Girl & The Goat
American · West Loop · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.4 · Service 4.5

Stephanie Izard’s "genius vision" defines this "hopping" West Loop "star" known for "life-altering" small plates that feature both "fun" uses of "familiar ingredients" and more "adventurous options" ( "the pig face is a must" ), plus "amazing breads and butters" ; the "high demand" for reservations keeps it "packed with people" , but "strong cocktails" and a staff that "makes you feel special" help ease the inevitable "long wait.
Au Cheval
Burger · West Loop · $$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.1

Some of the "richest diner food in town" can be found at Brendan Sodikoff’s "trendy" West Loop hang known for "creative" , "earth shatteringly good" takes on "homestyle" "comfort food" , including potato hash with duck heart gravy, a "delicious" fried bologna sandwich and, of course, the "absolutely killer" burger; "interesting" cocktails, "excellent" beers and a "dark, sexy" vibe add more "hipster" cred – just be "prepared to wait" since it doesn't take reservations.
Fat Rice
Chinese · Logan Square · $$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.1 · Service 4.4

A "tiny restaurant" with "big flavors" , this "unconventional" Logan Square "standout" offers an "exceptionally creative" Macanese menu ( "it’s every bit as exotic as it sounds" ) of "gorgeous" , "next-level" dishes, including a "fantastic" brunch; factor in "excellent cocktails" and a "convivial" , "boho-chic" setting and it’s "worthy of the hype" – the "only bad part is the wait."
Parson's Chicken & Fish
Southern American · Logan Square · $
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.3 · Service 3.7

Fantastic " fried chicken washed down with " fun " alcoholic slushies draws fans to this " cool, retro " shack with a " hipster Logan Square vibe "; though there are often " long lines ", you can always " order food to-go at the counter ", plus, the patio " sanctuary of picnic tables, umbrellas and Ping-Pong " makes it " perfect during the summer.