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Food & Wine

Michelin Star Restaurants in Chicago

Last Updated

August 28, 2023

Chicago is renowned for its vibrant culinary scene, with a plethora of Michelin-starred restaurants that cater to discerning food enthusiasts. These esteemed establishments offer unparalleled dining experiences, showcasing the creative genius of talented chefs and their commitment to excellence. From innovative gastronomy to impeccable service, Chicago's Michelin-starred restaurants set the bar high for fine dining in the city. Indulge in the harmonious symphony of flavors, exquisite presentation, and elegant ambiance that awaits you at these exceptional dining destinations.


Three Michelin Stars - Creative, Modern Cuisine

Alinea, the Michelin-starred restaurant in Chicago, is undeniably a temple of culinary innovation and indulgence. Led by renowned Chef Grant Achatz, this dining establishment consistently showcases novel ideas that captivate diners' senses. With its combination of theater and pure pleasure, dining at Alinea becomes an unforgettable experience. One cannot help but be enthralled by the olfactory journey created through scented vapors, tricks, and tableside fun. Under the skillful guidance of Executive Chef Douglas Alley, whimsical and experimental dishes are brought to life. Take, for instance, the custom resin dish featuring cured Arctic char, with its crisped skin glazed in maple syrup. Upon being flipped, it unveils roe suspended in smoke gel, adding another layer of intrigue. The culinary adventure continues as flavors borrowed from Thailand grace the palate with salt-baked kohlrabi shaved tableside. And to conclude the meal on a dramatic note, picture the "Paint" dessert—a Pollock-esque masterpiece featuring blueberries and a block of chocolate mousse flash-frozen in liquid nitrogen, smashed into delicious bits. At Alinea, every bite takes you on an extraordinary gastronomic voyage, leaving you awestruck by the level of creativity and finesse on display.


Two Michelin Stars - Creative, Modern Cuisine

A hidden gem in Fulton Market, Chicago, Ever is a stylish and intimate Michelin-starred restaurant. The gray-hued room creates a peaceful and meditative mood, complemented by velvet-smooth leather seats and plush carpeting. Prepare to be visually thrilled by inventive presentations that entice at every turn. Each dish showcases a penchant for sweet and herbaceous notes, like the combination of green apple and nasturtium with a frozen celery root cream that balances briny flavors with earthiness. Whimsical touches, such as bay scallops presented under a sugar shell, add an element of surprise. Desserts at Ever exhibit both substance and subtlety, like the combination of stout, sweet potato, and chocolate. With its inviting atmosphere, innovative culinary creations, and impeccable attention to detail, Ever stands out among the Michelin-starred restaurants in Chicago, offering a confident and extraordinary dining experience.

Moody Tongue

Two Michelin Stars - Contemporary, American Contemporary

Moody Tongue, a Michelin-starred restaurant in Chicago, offers a unique dining experience curated by Chef Jared Wentworth and Brewmaster Jared Rouben. Their hyper-seasonal and creative menu is brilliantly paired with a virtuosic array of house-crafted brews. The contemporary yet austere dining room, discreetly perched atop the working brewery, exudes an intimate and masculine vibe. Beverages are given equal importance to the food, seamlessly woven into the elevated cuisine. Indulge in innovative dishes like gently poached Maine lobster in spiced tomato water and seared Hudson Valley foie gras with burnt peach dashi. Conclude your meal with a delightful dark chocolate cake accompanied by toasted rye ice cream. Moody Tongue promises a confident and unforgettable dining experience that will leave you craving for more.


One Michelin Star - Mexican, Regional Cuisine

This jewel in Rick Bayless' crown welcomes a rush of diners for original Mexican food with an upscale twist. While you have to walk through cacophonous Frontera Grill to get here, the serenity that greets you is well worth it. The menu, boasting a panoply of flavors and textures, spins with the seasons all the while highlighting regional cuisines and holidays. Though each dish is rooted in tradition, there's no shortage of flair, as in kampachi sashimi decked with the flavors of street corn. There's also a canon of sauces treated with appropriate reverence. To wit, Oaxacan mole chichilo is a symphony of dried chiles, nuts and spices, and makes a sublime counterpoint to lamb loin.


One Michelin Star - American, American Contemporary

Sepia is a Michelin-starred restaurant in Chicago that offers an exquisite dining experience. Under the guidance of Chef Andrew Zimmerman, the menu at Sepia showcases a delightful fusion of American cuisine with influences from Southeast Asia, Korea, and the Mediterranean. One standout dish is the gnocchi, which surprises the palate with the tantalizing flavors of lamb sugo and ciabatta breadcrumbs. The chicken dish is equally impressive, featuring crispy skin complemented by a luscious Albufera sauce, crumbly chestnuts, caramelized fennel, and savory sausage. To round off the meal, Sepia's desserts are nothing short of exceptional. Guests might be treated to a toffee-coconut cake paired with indulgent chocolate ganache and a delectable burnt caramel topping.


One Michelin Star - Japanese, Sushi

Mako, led by veteran chef B.K. Park, is a hidden gem among Chicago's Michelin-star restaurants. This intimate Japanese establishment, marked only by a plaque, offers an inspiring omakase experience. With just 22 seats, securing a reservation is a coveted opportunity. Mako's team showcases their expertise through unique adornments like sudachi juice and sesame-pepper soy, enhancing the flavors of their meticulously crafted sushi. Cooked dishes, such as braised abalone and black cod with burnt scallion ponzu, are equally enticing. The chawanmushi, featuring mushroom and crab, exudes elegance, while the sweet potato dessert with whiskey caramel is a delightful finale. Mako's confident execution and dedication to culinary excellence make it a standout destination for discerning food enthusiasts in Chicago.

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