Good luck finding better beef elsewhere — Longhorn Steakhouse grills their sirloin with just the right amount of sizzle, and fans often hand out five-star reviews to this top-rated steakhouse.
Longhorn Steakhouse serves up endless healthy meal options.
Find the perfect vintage to complement your meal — this restaurant offers a fine selection of wines, beers, and beyond.
Longhorn Steakhouse is a great location to host a group dinner.
For those who prefer to dress down for dinner, Longhorn Steakhouse's low-key style is the perfect match.
If time is of the essence, this restaurant's take-out option may be a better fit.
Pull into one of the many parking spaces nearby if you choose to drive to the restaurant.
Who s hungry for great grub at a reasonable rate? Longhorn Steakhouse s yummy creations will leave a mark in your memory but not a dent in your pocketbook.
With food so tasty, you'll want to have breakfast, lunch, and dinner here...and you can go right ahead as Longhorn Steakhouse serves three meals a day.
When you want prime beef that will make your mouth water, come to Longhorn Steakhouse where the flavor (and the ratings) are out of this world.
In addition to great service, Longhorn Steakhouse serves up juicy and flavorful steaks. Make your way over to the restaurant today and indulge in a good meal.
Who doesn't love a warm tortilla? Fans of Tequilas say that the best Mexican fare is found right here, where top-notch ratings rule the menu.
Order a bottle for the table if you like — this restaurant has a full bar stocked with the best wine, beer, and more.
Youngsters are more than welcome to join mom and dad at this restaurant.
Have a large group? No problem. Head to Tequilas for easy seating.
Come order a flavorful feast at Tequilas, and sit outside if it's nice!
Give the restaurant a call to reserve your table ahead of time.
Tequilas' dress code is casual — diners are welcome to dress up (or down) to their comfort level.
Can't stay at this restaurant long? Pick up and go home.
Love the food so much you want to serve it at your next soiree? No problem — Tequilas offers catering.
If preferred, guests can leave their vehicles in a nearby lot, though space is available on the street as well.
Visa, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express are all accepted.
Experience the best flavors of Mexico when you try the highly-rated cuisine at Tequilas.
If you prefer casual dining, head on over to Tequilas and enjoy some Mexican fare in a comfortable setting.
When it comes to Mexican cuisine, Tequilas has you covered. Visit the restaurant today and enjoy a tasty meal.
Lotus Bar and Eatery's exquisite decor and tasty French cuisine will have you saying ooo la la.
Drinks all around! Pair your dinner with a beverage from this restaurant's full bar.
Lotus Bar and Eatery is known for its happy hour, which includes food and beverages.
Wanna soak up the sun? Come grab a bite at Lotus Bar and Eatery and sit out on their gorgeous patio.
Some say walking is the greatest thing in life. This restaurant knows it's carryout.
Call Lotus Bar and Eatery for catering if you have a big event coming up.
Take advantage of the quick and easy parking near Lotus Bar and Eatery.
Lotus Bar and Eatery's diners can store their bikes safely at the rack around the corner.
You'll typically spend about $30 per person to dine at Lotus Bar and Eatery, so plan your budget accordingly.
Conveniently serving three main meals a day, the restaurant is a great place to eat at any time of day, but is best known for its evening menu.
French fare like never before is waiting for you at Lotus Bar and Eatery, so select this trendy spot next time you feel like venturing into Europe.
With food so authentic at Lotus Bar and Eatery, every forkful feels like a vacation to France!
Choose your own cut of steak at Gastonia's Texas Roadhouse.
Gluten-free and low-fat are not one in the same, but this place serves them both.
With this restaurant's wide selection of refreshments available, you can tap into the drink menu early in the evening.
Children are more than welcome to dine at this restaurant, where there's something for everyone on the menu.
Texas Roadhouse caters to all party sizes, both large and small.
Texas Roadhouse welcomes laid-back diners, so there's no pressure to throw on heels or a tie.
The food's ready when you are. Come on in or carry out.
Hosting a swanky shindig? Call up Texas Roadhouse for their catering services.
Aside from the delicious, mouth-watering food and drinks, what's the best thing about us? Our free parking. Plain and simple.
Make use of the luxurious bike racks at Texas Roadhouse.
Menu items at Texas Roadhouse tend to be mid-priced, so expect to plop down about $30 per person to dine here.
Chow down on breakfast, lunch, or dinner fare at Texas Roadhouse — they're open for all three meals.
Put a twist on the tried-and-true steak dinner with a wide selection of sides and styles at Texas Roadhouse.
Whether you love them dunked in ranch dressing or smothered in barbecue sauce, the wings at Gastonia's Buffalo Wild Wings will fit any taste.
A night out deserves a drink to celebrate, and this restaurant has the perfect selection of beer and wine to go with your meal.
Raise your glass at Buffalo Wild Wings' happy hour.
Tap into the free wireless Internet at Buffalo Wild Wings.
Score quick and easy seating for groups of any size at Buffalo Wild Wings.
Enjoy the beautiful weather while you chow down — with outdoor seating, Buffalo Wild Wings is a great summer destination.
Between the music and the crowds, be prepared for a lot of noise at this restaurant.
Some say walking is the greatest thing in life. This restaurant knows it's carryout.
For easy dining, Buffalo Wild Wings provides convenient parking in a connecting lot.
Make use of the luxurious bike racks at Buffalo Wild Wings.
Buffalo Wild Wings s fare is so good, you ll want to sample everything on the menu (and with its middle-of-the-road prices, you can!).
So visit Buffalo Wild Wings and throw down on some wings the next time the urge strikes.
On The Border Mexican Grill is your one-stop dining destination for everything Tex-Mex.
Don't go thirsty during dinner! This restaurant also offers a splendid drink list featuring wine, beer, and more.
On The Border Mexican Grill is ready to make any occasion a special one with a great space and thoughtful food.
For some fresh air during the non-winter months, dine outside on On The Border Mexican Grill's patio.
Get online gratis thanks to On The Border Mexican Grill's complimentary wifi.
Great place to bring the whole family with great food and a business casual dress code.
Or, take your grub to go.
On The Border Mexican Grill will even bring the amazing food from their kitchen to yours.
Easy parking is accessible for On The Border Mexican Grill's diners.
Menu items at On The Border Mexican Grill tend to be mid-priced, so expect to plop down about $30 per person to dine here.
For a creative and unique take on Tex Mex, check out the menu at On The Border Mexican Grill.
So head on over to On The Border Mexican Grill for a tasty meal and keep up with the latest and greatest trends in Mexican cuisine.
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