Both vegetarians and carnivores can share a table at Palace Bar & Grill — situated in Annandale's Annandale community, this Korean restaurant serves protein-heavy plates alongside delicious veggie dishes.
Gluten-free and low-fat are not one in the same, but this place serves them both.
Complete your meal with the perfect glass of wine or beer from this restaurant's drink list.
Let the kids come too! Little ones love the food and atmosphere at this restaurant just as much as their parents do.
Score happy hour deals and steals at Palace Bar & Grill.
Large groups will appreciate Palace Bar & Grill for its ability to seat them quickly.
You'll want to save quiet conversations for another spot, though — the restaurant can get noisy.
Be sure to call for a reservation if the restaurant is part of your weekend plans — it can get crowded on Fridays and Saturdays.
It's time to take out your best dress and get ready for a beautiful meal.
If time is of the essence, this restaurant's take-out option may be a better fit.
Impress the guests at your next gathering by calling in Palace Bar & Grill for catering.
Whether you are looking for street or lot parking, Palace Bar & Grill is close to both.
Palace Bar & Grill knows how to put a smile on your face
the fairly-priced fare is easy on your taste buds as well as your wallet.
Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Palace Bar & Grill is a great dining option for any time of day.
If you're looking for a great Korean restaurant in the area, check out the extensive menu at Palace Bar & Grill.
Buon appetito! Eat your heart out at Springfield's Little Italy, where the freshest, five-star fare will fill any Italian appetite.
This place will leave you feeling satisfied no matter what kind of dietary needs you have.
Find time to peruse the wine list here — this restaurant offers a variety of drink options.
This restaurant is a terrific spot for families to gather with its kid-friendly ambience and menu.
Little Italy features some of the most affordable happy hour deals in town.
Little Italy is a suitable restaurant for both large and small groups.
Surf the web from your tablet or laptop on Little Italy's complimentary wifi.
A weeknight crowd is often present — the restaurant doesn't take reservations — so keep that in mind when planning your evening.
Leave the fancy duds at home — patrons at the restaurant dress informally.
Some say walking is the greatest thing in life. This restaurant knows it's carryout.
At Little Italy you can save some cash on parking when you park in the free lot down the street.
Typical diners should plan to spend about $30 per person on Little Italy's moderately priced fare.
Come see why the Italian food at Little Italy is well worth the price.
So amp up your lunch hour with a delicious and authentic Italian meal from Little Italy.
Order traditional kimchi or branch out of your comfort zone at Sorak Garden Restaurant — this Korean eatery is hard to beat.
Fear not you gluten-free or low-fat eaters, you'll have plenty of choices here.
Find the perfect vintage to complement your meal — this restaurant offers a fine selection of wines, beers, and beyond.
Let the kids come too! Little ones love the food and atmosphere at this restaurant just as much as their parents do.
Having a lot of friends can be complicated, but Sorak Garden Restaurant makes it easy to please everyone.
Not a popular place for dress-up dining, most Sorak Garden Restaurant patrons come in casual attire.
Meeting the gang for a movie? Pick up some food from this restaurant.
That's right! Sorak Garden Restaurant will bring their delicious food to your house for any occasion.
The restaurant is next to a parking lot, but drivers can also settle for street parking.
A mid-priced establishment, Sorak Garden Restaurant offers meals that typically cost about $30 or less.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all on Sorak Garden Restaurant's menu — you can stop by whenever the moment's right for you.
So go on a culinary adventure today and taste the many traditional eats of Korea at Sorak Garden Restaurant.
Come to Silverado for a sandwich and side — this eatery serves American cuisine everyone will love.
Life is all about choices, and they are not limited here with plenty of gluten-free and low-fat dishes.
This restaurant also provides alcohol, so diners don't have to worry about bringing their own bottle.
If you're in need of a booster seat, this restaurant's got you covered. This is a great spot for the whole family.
Take a great restaurant, add perfect party food and a fun group of people, and get a night for the ages at Silverado.
Keep it casual at Silverado, and save that little black dress for a different occasion.
Impress the guests at your next gathering by calling in Silverado for catering.
Free parking is offered every day in the lot next door, allowing guests to relax and enjoy their meal.
Meals at Silverado usually set you back about $30 per diner.
Supper is exceptional, though the restaurant also offers breakfast and lunch.
So when you're on the market for some great American cuisine, check out Silverado.
So enjoy a casual dining experience at Silverado and load up on some classic American dishes.
If you're seeking a highly-rated American restaurant in the area, look no further than Silverado.
Both vegetarians and carnivores can share a table at Han Gang Korean Restaurant — this Korean restaurant serves protein-heavy plates alongside delicious veggie dishes.
Whether you are looking for food low in fat or gluten-free, this restaurant is the place you want to eat.
You'll find a wonderful selection of drinks from this restaurant's full bar to top off your meal.
Bring the whole clan to this restaurant — kids and parents will love the menu and ambience here.
Whether you have a large or small group, Han Gang Korean Restaurant can accommodate both.
Casual dining at its best, Han Gang Korean Restaurant customers are free to enjoy themselves in jeans and a T-shirt.
Just through the door at this restaurant, you can claim your food. No delivery required.
Throwing a big party? Count on Han Gang Korean Restaurant to provide top-notch catering with the same great dishes you love.
The neighboring lot provides free parking to patrons.
Han Gang Korean Restaurant is creating dishes any foodie will love at around $30.
Guests can opt to pay by credit card, and most major names are accepted.
For delicious food with a Korean flare, head on over to Han Gang Korean Restaurant and browse the creative menu.
For that all-American meal, head to burger house Burger King in Annandale's Annandale district.
It serves everything including gluten-free and low-fat options.
Wifi is on the house at Burger King, so you can stay connected on your mobile device.
Burger King can provide comfortable seating options for parties of any size.
The burger joint's noise level can be somewhat straining on the vocal cords, so intimate get-togethers may be best enjoyed elsewhere.
Burger King offers an informal dining experience for those who are allergic to jackets and ties.
You can also serve food from Burger King at your next party — the burger joint offers catering.
Always five minutes behind schedule? Pick up your food to go instead.
Just come to us and park. No tickets, no fees, just a free convenient parking lot from us to you.
Chow down for less at Burger King, where a meal almost always costs under $15.
Breakfast bites, light lunches, and delicious dinners are all offered at Burger King.
For the best burgers in town, the choice is easy. Just head on over to Burger King.
Everyone in Annandale knows the secret to a high quality burger is a trip to Burger King.
Siu mai: small pork dumplings. Each has a thin wrapper that needs to be delicately pleated by hand. Easily, they’re one of the most labor-intensive items at Phoenix Restaurant in Chicago, where each weekend this Chinese restaurant serves 80 different varieties of classic dim sum snacks.
This little fact about the siu mai is one of many surprising stories I learn from Eddy, the chef at Phoenix, where he also handles a million other tasks to keep the restaurant running smoothly. When I first came in, he was waving at a group of regulars while on the phone haggling with a seafood vendor.
“What we are serving in this restaurant is what we are eating in Hong Kong. ... It’s very typical,” Eddy says.
In 1996, Phoenix was one of the first restaurants to introduce dim sum to Chicago. Its customer base has grown over the years, and today, even with other dim sum restaurants up and down the block, you’ll find long lines winding out the door on any given Sunday.
Sound intimidating? It doesn't have to be.
Here's our guide to dim-sum dining, with a few tips from Eddy.
On the weekend: order dim sum off a cart
On weekends and special holidays, the wait staff winds traditional dim sum carts around tables, lifting lids off stacked steamer baskets to reveal the enticing contents. Should you see something you like, they leave the basket on your table and put a checkmark on your bill (it’s tallied at the end).
Phoenix is one of the only dim-sum restaurants in Chicago that still uses these carts. When I ask Eddy why they keep them, he says “tradition.” Not only to impress the tourists who come in, but also to let Chinese-American customers share this bit of culture with their kids.
Hot tip: if you want to experience the pushcarts without the crowds, head over on a Saturday, which tends to be less busy than Sundays, Eddy says.
On a weekday: order dim sum off the menu
Cartless weekdays offer a quiet, more peaceful atmosphere for ordering off the paper menu, which you can find near the hostess stand. Don't be intimidated—the menu has pictures; it has numbers; it has names written in both Chinese and English. And best of all, you need only point to what you want to have it brought out from the kitchen.
So what should you get?
“Everyone has their favorites,” Eddy says. The most popular dishes with Westerners are ha gao (shrimp dumplings) and siu mai (pork dumplings mentioned above). Kids gravitate toward the crunchy, easy-to-grip shrimp rolls and sweeter fare, from mango pudding (pictured above) to custard rolls.
Foreign travelers, especially those from Latin America, and adventurous eaters alike seem to love the chicken feet (pictured at bottom-right of top photo), a more exotic dish consisting of skin and tendons. While all these dishes are traditional, the chefs can tweak the recipes to accommodate for special diets or food allergies.
When diners are new to dim sum, Eddy encourages them to experiment. He’ll point out a few of the more popular dishes; if there’s something they don’t end up liking, it can easily be swapped out for something else. This way, by the second or third visit, diners will have a better idea of what they like.
And don't forget the tea
At dim sum, the tea is equally important to the food. Phoenix serves three different types: green tea, white tea, and brown tea. “Each one has its own usage,” Eddy says. While we talk, we drink jasmine tea, which is good for getting rid of toxins.
You can show your dim sum know-how by obeying proper tea etiquette. When your teapot is out of water, prop the lid off to the side. This signals to the wait staff that you need more hot water.
Eddy pours more tea and tells me to tap my fingers lightly against the table when the cup is nearly full. “When your friend or host fills your tea, this means ‘thank you’,” he says. “It’s part of the custom.”
Photos by Andrew Nawrocki, Groupon
I had no idea what to expect upon arriving at Elizabeth, the Michelin Star winner from Chef Iliana Regan. But an unmarked, unremarkable storefront between a tire shop and a sporting-goods store certainly wasn’t it. With few exceptions (Schwa, most notably), Chicago’s upper-echelon restaurants boast exteriors that match their illustrious River North and Restaurant Row addresses.
But as it turns out, Regan has no taste for that sort of superficial flash. She dons no chef’s whites. She displays no awards. She does not raise her voice to the Gordon Ramsay–level roar or even the Rachael Ray-ish rollick that TV cameras eat up.
Instead, this northwest Indiana native quietly built her reputation as someone who hunts for frogs and spears them herself. Someone who has suffered tick bites and poison-ivy rashes foraging for wild flora. Someone who has penned an essay on intensity for Lucky Peach and once themed an Elizabeth tasting menu after those violent and visceral A Song of Ice and Fire novels.
So yeah, I was kinda terrified to eat her food.
I’d never done a tasting menu before. And I wouldn’t necessarily classify myself as a picky eater, but I’m not a particularly adventurous one either, particularly when it comes to meat. (I can barely look at plated octopus without shivering.) I’d heard that Regan once served edible ants. Which are, like, bugs.
My nerves were calmed upon walking into Elizabeth, though. Austere yet charming, the whitewashed space was accented by light fixtures made from bare tree branches; dining chairs draped with faux-fur slipcovers; a chef’s counter armed with Elder Scrolls and Vikings Funko Pop! dolls. It was all in support of the season’s menu theme: vikings.
There were two options: land or sea. Or, as the first in a delightful succession of servers explained it, “Imagine a viking ship has reached the shore. One group goes on land to look for food, the other into the sea.” My friend Erin and I opted to order one of each to share and, despite my trepidation of certain meats, placed no restrictions on what we would eat. (You can arrange for some allergies and dietary needs in advance.) We wanted to go all in.
After the amuse-bouche—a surprisingly complex roasted whey carrot dressed with goat’s-milk cheese and edible flowers—came our first courses. The land dish was … a bowl of rocks. The server assured me the top “rock” was actually a baked potato coated in edible clay. But it was very convincing as a rock, so I bit in with trepidation. As Erin ate the rest, dipping it into the cheese and butter puddings it was served with, I forked into her langoustine with lingonberries. (Pro tip: don’t try to tear off the claw without looking. You will stab your finger on a spine.) So far, so very good.
As the servers continued to weave their culinary narrative, I realized there was an unmentioned character in their tale—Elizabeth itself. The restaurant is small, seating about 16 or so, and the kitchen is wide open. It was impossible not to get caught up in what was happening back there, particularly when sous chefs were wielding brûlée torches and “plating” on gorgeous pieces of handmade pottery. And the line between front and back of house was practically nonexistent. One moment, you’d see someone in the kitchen stirring and slicing; the next they’d be presenting your next course or clearing your table. (Chef Regan included.)
This created an unexpected intimacy, one that removed any hesitation when asking about a particular dish. It’s clear the teammates take a deep yet quiet pride in their collective work. They spoke warmly about where ingredients came from, excitedly about the preparation techniques used. They always used “we” or “our,” never “me” or “Chef Regan.” (Again, Chef Regan included.)
Over the next few courses, there were so many charms. An herb-rolled, soft-boiled quail egg served in an actual nest; impossibly chewy seaweed bread darkened by squid ink; a cauliflower-mushroom soup that Erin about died over. I was particularly fond of a course called Barnyard: headcheese dusted with beet powder, paired with a collage of root vegetables and flavored puddings reminiscent of something out of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Modern Wing.
And that’s the thing. Never in my life would I have thought that I’d be fond of headcheese. I would have probably never eaten it if it weren’t for this meal. But it was fun to break out of my culinary comfort zone.
The other surprising thing? How full we were, considering it was a tasting menu. By the time we were served the entree courses—rare lamb medallions wrapped in swiss chard and pickled fish in a sauce of its own bones—we were taking deep breaths between bites. I’m pretty sure they were the only two plates we didn’t completely clean.
We managed to buck up for our “one-and-a-half” dessert courses, as the server put it. (The “half” was a palate-cleansing sorbet.) Our favorite was Under the Sea, a spongy coral-seaweed cake so realistic looking it prompted me to ask the server just how much of it we could eat. “All of it,” she said. We complied.
Maybe, as a writer, I’m just a sucker for a good story. But I was enchanted by Elizabeth, both in backstory and in not knowing what was coming next throughout the culinary adventure. And while I probably won’t be buying headcheese any time soon, I’m excited to see what Chef Regan has up her non-chef’s-whites sleeves next season.
Shop Chef Iliana Regan's tasting-menu experience at Elizabeth Restaurant:
Watch her explain her approach to fine dining:
As useful as WD40 and much more edible, coconut oil is a powerhouse. In fact, just one jar of the stuff can replace several household staples, from kitchen ingredients to baby wipes. Here’s how to substitute it for 16 total items in 3 rooms of the home:
1. Coffee: Coconut oil is a reputed energy booster. Swallowing a spoonful or two in the afternoon can be a healthful alternative to a cuppa.2. Coffee creamer: Emulsified and poured into coffee, it’s much tastier than (and probably just as nutritious as) that bulletproof stuff.3. Butter or oil (when sautéing): Coconut oil’s high smoke point makes it great for cooking on the stovetop, especially at high heat. Try swapping it in when making stir-fries, scrambled eggs, or pancakes, especially if you like a very mild coconut flavor.4. Oil (when baking): The oil imparts a delicious je ne sais quoi to baked goods—even boxed ones. Use it to give from-the-box brownies an upgrade, and you’ll dream about them for days.5. Condiments: Drop it into quinoa or oatmeal for added nutrients and healthy fats. You can also put it on top of sweet potatoes instead of butter!
6. Moisturizer: It works on your body and your face. It’s naturally SPF 4, so it offers a bit of protection from UV rays, too.7. Leave-in conditioner and anti-static agent: Rub a small amount between your hands and smooth them over your hair to control flyaways.8. Lip balm: It soothes sore, chapped lips, and other skin irritations.9. Eye-makeup remover: Rub it between your fingers until it liquefies, smear it on your lids, and wipe it off with a cotton pad.10. Face wash: Add a little water and rub it in your hands until it foams.11. Hand and foot cream: Massage it into cracked knuckles, or slather it onto your soles and stick them into socks for an overnight soak.12. Shaving cream: It’ll give you a smooth shave, plus additional moisture for your skin.
13. Ouchie ointment: Dab it on cuts and scrapes, which will benefit from its antimicrobial properties.14. Anti-itch cream: Coconut oil reduces itching from bug bites, and helps to calm sunburn, eczema, and cradle cap.15. Diaper cream: A layer on baby’s bottom guards against (and soothes) diaper rash flare-ups.16. Baby wipes: Simply mix it with hot water and pour it over a stack of paper towels that you’ve cut in half. Keep the towels in an airtight container so they stay moist.
Check out more coconut-oil coverage:
Oil Pulling Whitens Your Teeth and (Maybe) Makes You Invincible
The Five Best Uses for Coconut Oil You’ve Never Heard Of