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A Foodie’s Paradise: The Best Dining Spots in Illinois

If you are planning a meaningful and sustainable trip to Illinois, food-wise we can most definitely recommend you the best places to give your bud tastes a new experience.

Illinois is a must-visit destination in the Midwest, and for a good reason. It has many natural attractions, a rich history, and a vibrant progressive culture. An example of the progressive sentiments in Illinois is marijuana legalization.

You’ll appreciate Illinois’ adult-use landscape if weed is important to you. Medical marijuana is also available to patients, and Veriheal offers directions on how to become eligible.

Equally rich and exciting is the state’s culinary scene.

Expect a world of dining options across the state, from eclectic restaurants in Chicago to charming small-town eateries.

If you want to explore the Prairie State’s culinary delights, these seven dining spots are a must-visit.

1. Kuma’s Corner – Chicago

Chicago is one of the top food cities and home to world-class restaurants ranked among the creme de la creme of fine dining.

Still, there’s more to an excellent dining experience besides a high-end atmosphere, and that’s what you find at Kuma’s Corner.

The pub and restaurant embrace creativity when it comes to the atmosphere and menu. You’ll love their burgers and the rock n roll setting.

2. Schmaltz Delicatessen – Naperville

If you haven’t tried the overstuffed sandwich at the classic Jewish Schmaltz Deli in Naperville, you’re in for a treat.

Schmaltz is not your run-of-the-mill deli. If the awards are anything to go by, you’re looking at the ultimate spot for deli meats and sandwiches.

By the time you try out their signature Corned Beef and Pastrami, you will be sold already.

3. Abreo Restaurant – Rockford

If you appreciate small dishes with a touch of creativity, there’s no place better than Abreo in downtown Rockford. 

The restaurant’s dramatic presentation is not the only pleasant surprise. You’ll love the rich flavors accompanying the unique and reinvented local cuisine. 

Abreo sources its ingredients locally, creating authentic, seasonal, chef-inspired dishes that preoccupy your mind long after indulging your taste buds.

You’ll find Abreo quite fulfilling whether you drop in for a quick bite or a formal dinner.

4. Maize Mexican Grill – Champaign

Mexican cuisine is a huge part of the American culinary landscape. But where do you go to savor authentic Mexican dishes in Illinois?

Well, Maize Mexican Grill has two locations in Champaign that offer fantastic Mexican food, from corn tortillas to mouth-watering tacos.

The restaurant prides itself on its fresh, flavorful, and perfectly prepared dishes that are really as good as advertised.

5. The Capital Grille – Chicago

The reviews praising this Chicago steakhouse are certainly not inflated. If you’re searching for a fine dining experience featuring delectable selections and a fantastic ambiance, this is it.

You’ll love the creative dishes, top-notch presentation, and excellent service from the table to the bar.

If you have a special occasion or wish to have a memorable dining experience in Chicago, The Capital Grille won’t disappoint.

6. 17th St Bar & Grill – Murphysboro

No matter where you go in America, you’ll most likely be disappointed if you don’t come across a good barbecue joint. BBQ joints are at the core of the nation’s culinary scene, and the 17th St Bar & Grill will instill that pride into you.

We’re talking about one of the top BBQ joints in the country, backed by Mike Mills, a legend in the barbecue world.

You don’t want to leave Murphysboro without tasting the exceptionally juicy 2 slabs of Apple City Grand World Champion Baby Back Ribs. 

Just so you know, when you go 17th-St-Bar-&-Grill, there’s no turning back.

7. The Turf Room – Aurora

The Turf Room is a charming restaurant in North Aurora featuring elegant seating options, from lounge and wine bars to dining rooms and outdoor space.

You’ll find the broad American menu with a seasonal touch just as enticing as the upbeat ambiance. 

Once you try out popular dishes like calamari, Chilean sea bass romesco, and short rib, you’ll quickly add the restaurant to your list of top dining spots in Aurora.

Final Word

Let’s just say The Prairie State has its charm, and it may or may not kill it for you. But its culinary landscape is definitely one of the richest and most diverse in the Midwest.

You’ll have no shortage of unique, fine dining and casual destinations. One of the first things you’ll notice is variety, which gives you more options. 

Whether you prefer fancy spots with high-end menus or charming eateries with creative dishes, Illinois doesn’t disappoint.

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