If cooking isn't on the agenda, the perfect pie awaits you at Luigi's Apizza, where customers praise the pizza like no other.
At Luigi's Apizza, cautious eaters will appreciate the vegan, low-fat and gluten-free fare.
Order a bottle for the table if you like — this pizzeria has a full bar stocked with the best wine, beer, and more.
Little ones are free to make a mess at this pizzeria, where the whole family is invited to dine.
Comfort is prioritized at Luigi's Apizza, and guests are encouraged to come as they are.
If you need to feed a big crowd, Luigi's Apizza also offers catering services for parties and get-togethers.
Come in or stay home. This pizzeria's pickup and delivery options have you covered.
Free parking is offered every day of the week at the lot near Luigi's Apizza.
Featuring breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the pizzeria's evening menu is rated top-of-the-line.
When melted cheese and quality crust is all you can think about, it may be time for a hot slice or two. Experience pizza at its best when you order a pie from top-rated Luigi's Apizza.
For a low-key yet delicious pizza experience, people can't stop talking about the pies at Luigi's Apizza. Swing by for a quick bite next time pizza's on the agenda.
Come spend a casual night out over a delicious pizza at Luigi's Apizza.
When you need a good meal in a flash, grab a pizza from the highly-rated Luigi's Apizza.
Visit Luigi's Apizza for great Italian food that is well worth the price.
Isn't it time you tried Luigi's Apizza's great Italian place to satisfy your cheese cravings?
Ease your appetite with delicious bites from Hard Hat Cafe in North Haven.
Toast your evening out at this restaurant with a glass of beer or wine from their lengthy drink list.
The perfect place to take the kids, dining out at this restaurant won't cost you a sitter.
Make sure to check out Hard Hat Cafe's happy hour for a great way to decompress from the workday.
Hard Hat Cafe will be able to accommodate your large party.
For some fresh air during the non-winter months, dine outside on Hard Hat Cafe's patio.
Access the Internet free of charge via Hard Hat Cafe's complimentary wifi.
Those up for moving and grooving can take a turn on the dance floor.
Decibels can approach upper limits at this restaurant, so it's best to leave quiet conversation for another time.
Throw on your favorite T-shirt and head out the door — dining at Hard Hat Cafe is all about comfort.
Looking for something delicious to serve at your next party? Hard Hat Cafe also offers catering.
Short on time? Don't wait for a driver — pick it up yourself.
For diners who choose to drive to the restaurant, parking is readily available — the nearby lot offers optional valet, and street parking is also accessible.
Store your bike at a nearby rack and enjoy a bite to eat at Hard Hat Cafe.
The menu at Hard Hat Cafe includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner — stop by for your favorite meal.
Just-right juicy steaks are the norm at Outback Steakhouse, a five-star worthy, fan-favorite steakhouse.
The restaurant's menu also includes options for those with gluten allergies or sensitivities.
Complement your meal with a beer or wine from this restaurant's delightful drink menu.
Bring the whole clan to this restaurant — kids and parents will love the menu and ambience here.
Skip long waits and head to Outback Steakhouse with your large group for easy seating.
Call ahead for reservations to ensure your table is waiting for you when you arrive.
Diners who appreciate a no-frills environment come to Outback Steakhouse in jeans and a hoodie.
Throwing a big party? Count on Outback Steakhouse to provide top-notch catering with the same great dishes you love.
Don't be afraid to enjoy your food on the go — this restaurant offers takeout for your busy schedule.
At Outback Steakhouse, free parking is offered on the whole block.
Outback Steakhouse's diners can store their bikes safely at the rack around the corner.
Deep pockets not required! Outback Steakhouse takes pride in its over-the-top flavor and just-right prices.
Outback Steakhouse knows there's nothing like a big, juicy steak, so head on down and see what all the hype is about.
Outback Steakhouse is a steakhouse committed to serving up the best cuts for an exceptional dining experience.
Visit Breakfast Nook for some true American comfort food.
Don't leave the kids at home — youngsters will love the family-friendly cuisine at this restaurant just as much as mom and dad.
Wifi is on the house at Breakfast Nook, so you can stay connected on your mobile device.
Groups of all sizes can easily be seated at Breakfast Nook.
The restaurant takes reservations, so you can plan your next get-together ahead of time.
Casual clothing is the name of the game at Breakfast Nook, where suits and ties won't be spotted for miles.
Ordering food? You can pick it up yourself!
Looking for something delicious to serve at your next party? Breakfast Nook also offers catering.
Whether you're heading to Breakfast Nook for lunch or dinner, parking is always free in the adjacent lot.
For those who travel by bike, Breakfast Nook offers bike racks for diners.
The breakfast dishes at the restaurant really bring the crowds in, though lunch and dinner are also served.
A hearty salad, juicy burger, or classic chicken — all of your favorite American dishes will be made fresh when you head to Breakfast Nook.
Swing by Breakfast Nook today and enjoy a delicious American meal in a casual setting.
So take your next meal to the next level and indulge in some great American eats at the highly-rated Breakfast Nook.
Craving pizza? Head on over to North Haven's J Roo's Restaurant for a tasty slice with a crust you can't resist.
Find time to peruse the wine list here — this pizzeria offers a variety of drink options.
Private rooms make any group feel like VIP guests at J Roo's Restaurant.
The pizzeria doesn't let you book your table ahead of time, so expect a first-come, first-served policy when you visit.
J Roo's Restaurant's dress code is casual — diners are welcome to dress up (or down) to their comfort level.
J Roo's Restaurant can also cater your next party; call today for details.
Homebodies can take advantage of this pizzeria's delivery and take-out options.
The free parking lot next door is a steal for those dining at J Roo's Restaurant.
Prices at J Roo's Restaurant typically stay below the $30 mark, so you can afford to bring along a friend or a date.
If you're short on cash, take care of business with one of many major credit cards.
The pizzeria is open from morning through evening, but the dinner menu serves the tastiest reviews.
Switch up your normal pizza routine and head on over to J Roo's Restaurant for a new take on pizza.
A perfectly marbled cut of beef is no farther away than North Haven's Longhorn Steakhouse.
Longhorn Steakhouse's chefs have carefully created a menu filled with flavorful and healthy eats.
Order a bottle for the table if you like — this restaurant has a full bar stocked with the best wine, beer, and more.
Having trouble finding that family-friendly restaurant everyone will love? This restaurant serves all ages, so little ones are welcome to come along, too.
Longhorn Steakhouse tosses the jacket-and-tie dress code convention in favor of a more casual dining experience.
Short on time? Don't wait for a driver — pick it up yourself.
Save some cash on parking when you park in the lot adjacent to the restaurant.
Longhorn Steakhouse is home to many cyclists who appreciate the parking racks outside.
Prepare to spend about $30 per person when dining at Longhorn Steakhouse.
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.
When's the last time you had an exceptional steak? Sample some of the best cuts in town at Longhorn Steakhouse.
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