What's in a name? In the case of 87th Street Steak & Hoagy, pretty much everything. The business's moniker accurately paints it as a destination for tasty steak sandwiches and turkey hoagies. For even more flavor, the cooks can crown sandwiches in steak or barbecue sauce, serving them alongside hot fries. The menu expands into some other territories for breakfast, when sandwiches temporarily take a backseat to steak and egg platters, pancakes, and omelets, also known as the hoagies of breakfast.
At Parrot Cage, voted a top brunch spot by OpenTable users, servers whisk seared seafood, succulent meats, and contemporary American cuisine to white-draped tables amid an elegant atmosphere, where lush décor pays homage to the historic building's past life as the grandiose South Shore Country Club. The restaurant was created by the Washburne Culinary Institute, as a place where seasoned chefs tutor pupils in every aspect of running a restaurant. Beyond the restaurant's teaching element, press features agree that Parrot Cage Restaurant is top notch. Centerstage called the dishes "precise and deliberate," and a Chicago Reader reviewer praised the "superb view of the lake" and confessed that with "friendly and prompt" service, he "couldn't tell which staffers were students."
The restaurant's name, tropical green hue, and 100-year-old Victorian parrot cage honor the vibrant feathered creatures of Hyde Park and South Shore. Servers speculate that Chicago's first such birds escaped from an owner's cage, an exhibit at the 1893 World's Columbian Expedition, or an unsatisfying romance with a street pigeon.
Chi Tung began as a small Chinese restaurant in 1988, but has since evolved into a 200-seat pan-Asian kingdom that houses a hibachi steak house as well as a lounge area. In the midst of several growth spurts, owners Jinny and Dan Zhao have trained their focus on upholding high culinary standards. They parceled their cooking team into three separate kitchens, each one dedicated to producing authentic Chinese, Thai, or Japanese food. In these highly specialized quarters, cooks prepare hundreds of menu items, such as mongolian beef, shrimp pad thai, and chicken satay. Although the cooks work at a steady clip, they adhere to traditional recipes and techniques when blending custom sauces and handcrafting more than 100 types of sushi.
At Omega Restaurant Pancake House & Bakery, sizable omelets, skillets full of hash browns, and fresh eggs are mainstays on the menu no matter the hour—and the dining room is open until midnight every day. Sweet options range from oven-baked apple pancakes to crepes, including one stuffed with Montmorency cherries and an imported Danish wine. There's also the onsite bakery, which produces delectable pies, danishes, and pastries.
The new owners of Omega Restaurant Pancake House & Bakery have instructed their chefs to be just as detailed with their afternoon dishes. Each burger patty is ground in-house, and homemade soup specials rotate daily. Alongside a sprawling list of sandwiches and wraps, dinner plates such as veal parmesan, and Athenian-style skirt steak bring an international touch to the table.
True to its meat-loving Chicagoland roots, TCs Pub grills up deep-fried, bacon-wrapped hot dogs and stuffed burgers that are so big you can barely hold them together, let alone bite them. The sports pub is fresh off a recent remodeling, but the chefs still sling handcut french fries, ribeye sandwiches, and gooey pizza puffs that have kept locals and visitors coming back. Fresh salads and fried zucchini offer a vegetarian-friendly alternative. Diners can wash down their meal with one of the 28 beers that are on tap, or sip from an extensive selection of ciders, with flavors that include black cherry, peach, and pear. Game night and beer pong are some of the weekly events. On the weekends, people pack the dance floor to shimmy to live DJ and band music, or the syncopated clinking of spoons and forks.
A metallic blur passes over the sizzling grill top, lifting briefly to send a single scallop arcing through the air and landing neatly on a plate. The hibachi chefs at Tokyo Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar shape artful cuisine with panache, charming diners with dexterous knife work as they sear morsels of seafood, steak, and chicken at tableside grills. A selection of sushi and sashimi includes specialty maki, such as the chicago roll, which encloses shrimp, egg, and avocado in a layer of sushi rice, providing a culinary alternative to the city's signature hot dogs topped with celery salt and boiled Air Jordans.