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Dec 9, 2009 06:31 AM

Visiting Chicago - Looking for NYE Restaurant

My fiance and I are visiting Chicago for 4 nights over New Years. This is our first time visiting. We are thinking of going out to dinner for NYE, but want to go to a fun (not quiet) restaurant with great food. We're thinking of getting a late reservation somewhere and staying to celebrate the New Year. Are there any restaurants that would fit this criteria? Price is not too much of a concern, though we would even love to find a great Irish pub we could eat at and stay through the night. We are staying at the Conrad. Our biggest concern is - we don't want to get ripped off because it's NYE, which has happened to us in the past. Any suggestions are appreciated.

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  1. Yes, I've had some dreadful NYE restaurant experiences too. That's the problem with NYE. Restaurants usually offer special menus with jacked-up prices, and entertainment too. Many restaurants are just as good as ever, but some can't even meet their everyday standards.

    We have lots of fun (not quiet) restaurants with great food. Many of our upscale ethnic restaurants fall into this category, such as places offering Latin fusion (Nacional 27, Carnivale), pan-Asian (Red Light), and tapas (Mercat a la Planxa). However, I don't know how well they do on NYE.

    You can see a listing on of NYE plans for restaurants that accept reservations through that system (which serves most of our upscale restaurants) at Places identified with the location of "River North" will be closest to your hotel. Your hotel is also not far from those shown as "Downtown/Loop" and "Gold Coast/Streeterville".

    You can also see a listing of NYE plans on the Metromix website at

    1. Great Irish Pub near downtown Chicago - Try Fado's on Grand Avenue (google Fado). Don't know if they're serving food on NYE but if they are, it's good stuff. When Fado closes, stumbling distance is O'Callaghan's on Hubbard but be careful, it's a 4am bar - it's not really an Irish Pub but it's fun. Other Irish Pubs, try one of the Vaughan's ( pubs. Generally good food, and some Irish Americans, and they will be lively. Closest to an authentic Irish Pub near downtown is Celtic Crossing on Clark. Check these out. All are a cab ride away but that's most likely how you'll roll on NYE anyway between weather and imbibing. Good luck and enjoy yourself in the Windy City!

      1. I have been to Carnivale several times, once on NYE. It's a great bet for a fun restaurant that is DEFINITELY not quiet, good food and drinks. Not sure if you can stay all night (we had to give up our 12 top after 3ish hours or so) but with just 2 of you you could certainly move into the bar.

        Carnivale had its normal menu with normal prices for NYE when we were there 2 years ago.

        1. The Gage on Michigan Avenue is one of best Irish/American pubs in the city.

          1. Try Gemini Bistro. Young, contemporary, loud, stylish yet casual. Very good food. They have a 3 course menu for $55pp, with a choice of items for each course. Corner of Lincoln and Dickens/Cleveland. A short cab ride from Conrad at the southern end of the Lincoln Park area. Another option may be Mercat an excellent tapas restaurant in the Blackstone Hotel.