Get Your Mimosa On at These 7 Chicago Brunch Spots
You won’t want to visit Chicago without trying out some of the city’s many brunch offerings, but where to go? This list will help you choose.
1. Au Cheval
Au Cheval is easily one of the most popular brunch places in all of Chicago. This, unfortunately, means that a wait is almost guaranteed, but it’s worth it. The chilaquiles, in particular, are renowned throughout all of Chicago, but the truth is that there’s no bad item on the brunch menu here. Whether you’re looking for a Mexican-inspired dish or something 100% American, you’ll find it here.
This is the place to go if you want to enjoy delicious food in gorgeous surroundings. Chicago doesn’t lack for amazing, atmospheric restaurants, but this one is the best of the best. Keep in mind that Au Cheval opens a bit later than many other brunch restaurants—10am on Sundays, and 11am every other day of the week. To minimize the wait time, try to get there right when they open.
Another very popular brunch place is Acre on Clark Street in Andersonville. From 11am to 3pm on Saturdays and Sundays, eighteen dollars will get you all-you-can-drink mimosas. Given that Acre is known for its amazing drinks, that’s not a deal to be turned down. If all-you-can-drink mimosas seem a bit excessive to you, though, the prices for individual drinks are also very reasonable. A mere six dollars will get you an amazing Bloody Mary or mimosa to complement a delicious brunch. That, of course, is pretty difficult to resist, and it’ll only get harder once you’ve actually tasted the amazing offerings.
Particularly popular items include the Farmer’s Breakfast Skillet, which features a delectable combination of eggs, potatoes, broccoli, red peppers, and parmesan cheese. Conscientious diners will be glad to know that Acre prides itself on being a farm-to-table restaurant—pretty much all of the meat and produce comes from small family farms in the Midwest. The drinks, likewise, are mostly produced in North America, and the menu is seasonally focused. Farm-to-table dining is pretty popular in Chicago, the unofficial capital of the American Midwest, but it’s usually significantly more expensive than this. You can’t get this quality of food at this price point anywhere else in the city, so head over to Acre to check it out! You may want to check their website for upcoming specials before you go, as they regularly offer not-to-be-missed deals.
3. Cantina 1910
Another popular farm-to-table brunch spot is Cantina 1910, which serves Mexican-inspired brunch with a twist. They have the huevos rancheros that everybody loves, but they also serve more unconventional items, such as atole pancakes. Many people who’ve been there swear that the deceptively simple fried chicken and churros are the best thing on the menu. They may be right, but it’s hard to say—simply put, everything Cantina 1910 serves is delicious, and it’s more or less impossible to pick a favorite. If you like Mexican food, you’ll be in heaven, and even if you don’t, you’ll probably change your mind by the time you leave.
Some of the items are on the pricey side, but you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get something delicious to eat at Cantina 1910. The pastries are all very reasonably priced, and for only five dollars, you can enjoy their amazing La Concha—a carefully stuffed sweet bread with a crunchy topping. On the other hand, if you want something slightly more to eat, you can order from the “pequeno” section of the menu. Most likely, you’ll want to do both—Cantina 1910 is one of those restaurants where it’s hard to pick only one item from the menu. You could probably spend a week in Chicago and never eat anywhere else but here, though you’d miss out on a lot of other amazing options.
4. Chief O'Neill's Pub & Restaurant
Chief O’Neill’s Pub & Restaurant isn’t as brunch-oriented as some of the other places on this list, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth checking out. On Sundays from 10am to 2pm, a mere twenty dollars will get you access to an incredible brunch buffet, including a Bloody Mary bar. There are countless dishes to choose from, and you can get an omelet made to order if you’re picky.
The drinks are amazing, but Chief O’Neill’s also offers one of the more child-friendly brunches in the city—if you have kids under ten, they’ll be able to get in for only twelve dollars. Make sure to call ahead, though, as space can be limited.
5. Dolce Italian
Dolce Italian was a popular Chicago restaurant long before it started serving brunch, but now its weekend fare has catapulted it to new heights of fame. Unlike some other Chicago brunch places, Dolce Italian hasn’t caved to the pressure to serve a generic brunch—its most popular fare is inspired by its Italian roots. Their ‘brunch pizza,’ featuring a delicious combination of sausage and poached egg, is known for being particularly good.
The Dolce Benny dish, which features poached eggs served on ciabatta with porchetta, spinach, and hollandaise, has the same reputation. As far as drinks go, the Bubbles Package offers bottomless mimosas, Bloody Marys, and glasses of bellini. The prices at Dolce Italian run slightly more expensive than at other restaurants in Chicago, but it’s still perfectly affordable for most people. If you’re used to eating out in a more expensive city, such as New York or Los Angeles, you probably won’t even notice it. The price certainly hasn’t stopped this from becoming a popular brunch spot; you’ll want to make a reservation for the day you’re planning to go.
Book online, either on their website or by emailing email@example.com. If you prefer to make a reservation by phone, the number is (312) 754-0700.
Bottlefork, like Acre, is located on Clark Street. It’s a stylish establishment with food so good that it almost feels like it would be wrong to eat it every day, but yet most customers find themselves going back again and again. Going here for brunch is an event; they offer a variety of starters and appetizers that are every bit as good as the meal proper, and that’s saying something. Bottlefork may be the only brunch place in Chicago that can make a simple sandwich into an amazing culinary experience.
That being said, the sandwiches are by no means the only items on the menu worth eating. The eggs and salads are just as incredible, especially if you have a few extra dollars to spend on the more high-end items. That’s not even getting into the various incredible cocktails on the drinks menu. Brunch is served from 10:30am to 2pm on Saturdays and from 10:30am to 4pm on Sundays—you can still get brunch even when it’s almost dinnertime! You’ll probably want to make a reservation in advance, though, as this place can get crowded.
7. The Bristol
The people at the Bristol have put a lot of thought into their restaurant’s vibe, and it shows. That shouldn’t be taken to mean, though, that the food is in any way lackluster—quite the opposite, in fact. There may be no better place in Chicago for classic brunch items, and the Bristol has an atmosphere that will make you feel right at home. You might wonder how they do it, but then again, it’s probably pretty difficult not to feel at home when you’re eating the best cinnamon rolls in the entire city. That being said, you don’t go to the Bristol just for the cinnamon rolls—everything else is just as good. The Bristol is another Chicago restaurant that is very conscientious about where its food comes from, so all the ingredients are of a high quality. You’ll enjoy your meal, and you’ll enjoy the hand-crafted cocktails even more. The Bristol is located in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood, and over the years, it’s come to be viewed as a local classic. You’ll want to make a reservation through Open Table, especially if you’re going around the holidays—they run a lot of specials at that time of year.
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