For that can't-get-enough Mexican flavor, check out Margaritas Mexican Restaurant, where five-star dishes are just over the counter.
Unwind with a glass of wine or cocktail with your meal — this restaurant has a wonderful selection of drinks to accompany your dinner.
Tots are more than welcome to dine with their parents at this restaurant.
On warmer days, you can take advantage of Margaritas Mexican Restaurant's al fresco patio seating.
Margaritas Mexican Restaurant can provide comfortable seating options for parties of any size.
Not to be overlooked is Margaritas Mexican Restaurant's no-charge wifi.
Reserve a table ahead of time and avoid the lines.
Margaritas Mexican Restaurant honors a business casual dress code, so formal wear can be left behind.
Through their catering service, Margaritas Mexican Restaurant can also set out a delicious spread for your next party.
If you need to get somewhere fast, the restaurant also serves up grub to go.
Diners at Margaritas Mexican Restaurant will be happy to know that free parking is always available.
Margaritas Mexican Restaurant's diners can store their bikes safely at the rack around the corner.
Payment is simple and all major credit cards are accepted.
Come experience an amazing array of Mexican dishes when you try the highly-rated Margaritas Mexican Restaurant.
Stop in Margaritas Mexican Restaurant today and enjoy a Mexico-inspired meal in a casual setting.
From tacos to chips and salsa, Margaritas Mexican Restaurant has you covered when it comes to tasty Mexican cuisine.
Concord's Tea Garden Restaurant serves wonderfully aromatic teas and more.
The gluten-free and low-fat fare at Tea Garden Restaurant will leave you happy and full.
Complement your meal with a beer or wine from this restaurant's delightful drink menu.
Take the kids along too — this restaurant is a great spot for families with food that even little ones will love.
Tea Garden Restaurant has a large dining room, making it easy to seat large parties.
Take your meal to the next level on the patio at Tea Garden Restaurant.
Take advantage of the restaurant's reservation system, and book a table for your party.
Put the suit away when heading to Tea Garden Restaurant — dress is casual, as are the vibes.
Grab this restaurant's delicious food on the go with its takeout and delivery services.
If you need to feed a big crowd, Tea Garden Restaurant also offers catering services for parties and get-togethers.
We understand parking is expensive. That's why we've got a parking lot for you. Spend your money on our delicious food and drink.
You won't find better prices in town than at Tea Garden Restaurant, so grab all the snacks you can carry.
Guests can opt to pay by credit card, and most major names are accepted.
Feel free to swing by the restaurant for breakfast or lunch, but fans recommend holding out for dinner.
Tea time is always right around the corner at Tea Garden Restaurant. Pick up your cup of choice today.
Soft and chewy goodness is well within reach. Get your bagel on at Tea Garden Restaurant.
Come to Barley House to grab an American classic with a side of fries.
Watching your diet? Stay on track at Barley House, a local restaurant with gluten-free and low-fat options.
Enjoy a drink with your dinner — this restaurant has a full bar to serve up a glass of wine, beer, or more.
Grab the kids when you head to this restaurant — its family-oriented menu and ambience are perfect for the whole clan.
Groups of all sizes can easily be seated at Barley House.
Stay in the loop (and online!) by tapping into Barley House's free wifi hotspot.
Eat outdoors Barley House (weather permitting) with their beautiful patio seating.
Don't be the last one waiting! Reserve a seat so you can eat when you're ready.
Shake off the stiff workday duds at Barley House — attire is casual.
Can't get enough of Barley House's tasty dishes? They also offer a catering service for parties and events.
You can call it in, then carry it out.
Barley House's diners can score a street parking spot just a short walk away.
If you don't want a night that will cost you an arm and a leg but you do want a delicious meal, come to Barley House.
If you're short on cash, take care of business with one of many major credit cards.
Isn't it time you indulged in the old classics of American food? Stop by Barley House to have a bite of deliciousness.
There's no doubt about it. A satisfying meal can always be found at Barley House.
When you need an American restaurant that is sure to impress, come to the highly-rated Barley House.
For familiar food you're sure to love, head to Tandy's Top Shelf for American-style cuisine.
Great food plus TV equals the perfect fan meal.
Sit outside at Tandy's Top Shelf and soak up the sun on those nice summer days.
Wifi is on the house at Tandy's Top Shelf, so bring along your tablet or laptop.
Tandy's Top Shelf is a great location to host a group dinner.
Musical groups often perform live and DJs are common here, too.
Sit back and enjoy the restaurant's live music, or take your table out on the dance floor.
Be sure to call for a reservation if the restaurant is part of your weekend plans — it can get crowded on Fridays and Saturdays.
At Tandy's Top Shelf, "dress to impress" is a thing of the past, and jeans are the new norm.
Don't be afraid to enjoy your food on the go — this restaurant offers takeout for your busy schedule.
Take the comfort of your own home and add great grub from Tandy's Top Shelf to create the perfect night.
Those driving to Tandy's Top Shelf can choose to find street parking or leave their vehicle in the nearby lot.
You'll typically spend about $30 per person to dine at Tandy's Top Shelf, so plan your budget accordingly.
Save the cash for another day and pay by major credit card at Tandy's Top Shelf.
Tandy's Top Shelf has menus for breakfast, lunch, and dinner — just pick your favorite meal and head over.
For a dish just like mom made, you'll definitely want to stop by Tandy's Top Shelf's tasty restaurant.
The premier destination for wonderful steak and good seafood, O Steaks and Seafood South in Concord is one of the area's best-rated restaurants. It's a popular spot for visitors interested in wonderful service and a yummy meal.
Defined by its outdoor seating, the restaurant is a fantastic option when the New England weather is cooperating. Try to remember that smart casual is the suggested attire. Also, though the price can be a bit higher than average, the experience here is definitely what you pay for.
When you arrive, you should check out the seafood, as it's frequently gotten rave reviews. For those watching what they eat, the robust menu does feature items that are gluten-free, low-fat, and vegetarian. WiFi is available if you want to get some work done, and in addition to its convenient take-out menu, the restaurant even provides catering for events around town. Or, if you just want to stop by for a beverage, the restaurant has a pretty broad selection at its bar.
A reputable favorite for both lunch and dinner, a trip to O Steaks and Seafood South is definitely worthwhile. Its bar staff is known to be "friendly" and "great," while the bar is "nice." Visitors to the restaurant have access to a parking garage or private lot nearby (or can park on the street).
Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant's cheesy goodness cannot be beat — this mellow establishment in Concord's Concord has perfected the art of pizza.
The gluten-free and low-fat fare at Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant will leave you happy and full.
Complete your meal with the perfect glass of wine or beer from this pizzeria's drink list.
Little ones are free to make a mess at this pizzeria, where the whole family is invited to dine.
No need to dress to the nines here — Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant's policy is business casual, so guests can dine in comfort.
This pizzeria serves up innovative meals, so stop in, order takeout, or call for delivery. Whichever road you choose, happy eating!
It's time to gather up the party people. Serve them great food from Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant.
At Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant, you can safely park just around the corner.
Tabs at Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant almost never exceed $15, so it's a great low-cost option for any time.
So head on over to Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant, where the pizzas are always hot and the ambiance is always cool.
When you are feeling hungry, pay Rossini's Pizzeria and Restaurant a visit and enjoy a hot and fresh pizza filled with endless flavors.
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