It’s mid-day, you’re tired of being stuck in the office and your tummy is grumbling, what’s a gal to do? Go out to lunch of course! It’s a good excuse to leave your desk for a bit, and time you can either catch up with friends, coworkers or maybe just a good book. The next question arises though, where to go? Well, if you work in the Chicago Loop, I’ve got you covered. Below are my top 5 recommendations for lunching in the Loop. I chose places that give you a lot of variety, because if you are anything like me, you just never quite know what you want to eat until it almost falls in your lap.
- Chicago French Market: This is a wonderful spot if you not only want to escape your office, but the big city too! Inside this adorable market you will feel transported to a little, well, French Market. There are options galore as well (not all French by the way), and you can satisfy almost any taste bud. From smoothies and salad, to Thai and Chinese, to crepes and chocolates, they have it all. As the weather gets nice you can even take your lunch outside and feel even more French as you dine under an adorable umbrella. If you’re stopping by later in the day, make it a happy hour and enjoy a nice glass of wine. My tops picks from the Chicago French Market would have to be the french fries from Frietkoten. One word describes them – heavenly. I also LOVE the crepes from Flip Crepes, and I am not normally a crepe fan. These are sooo good though, and guess what, they are ALL gluten free. Which is amazing if you have to avoid wheat like me.
- Latinicity: If you want some latin flair for lunch, Latinicity is the place for you. It sits within the Block 37 Mall, so you can do even do some shopping before or after you eat. Latinicity is a beautifully decorated space, with food that is presented even more beautifully. While there is a wide range of options, from burgers to sushi to salad, it all comes with some latin spice, like the barbacoa grilled cheese and the crab meat with guacamole. Of course they have the standards you expect as well, fried plantains, tacos, burritos, etc. It’s been a great edition to that “State Street, that great street” and one you must try for yourself.
- Mariano’s Lakeshore East: For the Loop Eastsiders, this is a great place to venture for lunch, and to pick up some groceries. They have an excellent salad bar, a fully stocked hot bar, every kind of dessert under the sun, a wide assortment of cheeses, fresh smoothies, and on and on (after all, it is a grocery store, they have it all). In the summer they grill burgers on the outdoor patio overlooking the lush park that is at the center of Lakeshore East. It’s a great spot for a quick bite, and if you choose to linger, you’ll enjoy doing that too.
- Forum 55: The loops newest food hall has been getting lots of buzz lately. They are open only for breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday, so you know they cater to the business crowd. Like my other mentions they offer a little bit of everything -sushi, ramen, pizza, tacos, etc. However, they have partnered with some well known brands across Chicago, making it easy for you to get some of your favorites in one visit. Partners include Broken English (delicious tacos!) and Pork & Mindy’s.
- Revival Food Hall: Revival isn’t only for the Loop business folk on lunch, I think it’s also a great place for tourists visiting our lovely city. It is decorated to the nines, offers wonderful fares from many beloved Chicago establishments and is in a prime location. This food hall truly feels like one you would find in cities where food halls have been long loved, like NYC. My recommendations to try here, Aloha Poke for a fresh bowl, followed by a sweet treat at Black Dog Gelato.
What are you waiting for, step away from that desk and take yourself to lunch – you’ve got a lot to try!
Signed with Style,