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Jul 15, 2013 12:20 PM

First Time in Chicago, Staying at Sax Hotel

Looking for some recommendations, We are going to Chicago for the first time, we are looking for affordable restaurants with great atmosphere close by where we are staying Hotel Sax. There for 4 nights

We already have lined up for sure the following
Portillo's (for lunch)
Lou Malnati's (for lunch)
Quartino (for dinner)

Heaven on Seven (for dinner) (would you recommend this? Is it worth it?)

Looking for some more dinner spots affordable but great atmosphere, small plates, steak house (that potatoes and veggies come with your meal) & great pub/gastro pub with good food.

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  1. I like Heaven on Seven but it's just not going to give you a sense of Chicago. There are a number of restaurants that pop up in discussions of "first time in Chicago" posts, all of which are going to be a better experience, such as Purple Pig, GT Fish & Oyster, Bar Toma and Sable. They are all within brief casual walking distance from your hotel.

    1. I would agree- I would skip Heaven on Seven and Quartino. Quartino is fine and a fun place, but not that remarkable. Would swap in GT Fish and Oyster, Frontera Grill, Purple Pig, Sunda etc. If you want Italian small plates, RPM has some good food and is a fun spot as is Sienna Tavern. Make reservations in advance as the popular spots get full. For a steak house, most that I can think of, which there are countless in the area, have the sides a la carte. Or you could go to a regular restaurant and have steak as your entree where it comes with sides.

      1. A couple of other suggestions: Bandaras for lunch or dinner on the east side of Michigan Avenue across from Nordstrom. It's a level above street level so look up.

        Mitey Nice Grill for lunch. It's in Water Tower Place.

        1. I agree with what has been said before. Bar Toma, GT Fish & Oyster, and Sable are all better options. I can't think of a steakhouse that isn't a la carte in the area.

          1. I skipped the pub/steak house part, but The Gage is a good gastropub choice. It's about a mile or so from your hotel but it's adjacent to Millenium Park so I'd imagine you'd hit it somewhere in your travels. As for the steak, while it's nowhere near "steak house", Miller's Pub (very, very old school, also near the Gage/Millenium) has a steak/potato/salad menu, although yo'll probably be better off with their burger.