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Diners' Choice: Contemporary American restaurants in Chicago / Illinois

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OpenTable
Updated 05 February 2024

Looking for restaurants with the best overall Contemporary American cuisine in Chicago / Illinois? You’re in the right place. Each month OpenTable analyses more than 400,000 new diner reviews. We sort the results by category to help you discover new favourites. It's a great partnership: you reserve, eat, and review. We listen...and deliver the results for all to benefit. Enjoy!


A photo of Brasero restaurant
4.9
4.9 (59)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
West Town
About the restaurant
Brasero, a South American term for a grill's fire box, is born of Chef John Manion's love for the live-fire cooking of Brazil that captured his imagination as an eight-year-old living in San Paolo. Brasero brings bold, wood-fired Latin cooking to West Town’s bustling restaurant row. This sultry 120-seater draws inspiration from across Latin America, honed through Manion’s decades of experience. Think flame-roasted, whole young chickens slicked with garlic-chili oil, linquiça with mojo de ajo, and moqueca teeming with mussels, shrimp and coconut-scented rice—all washed down with quenching caipirinhas and locally brewed, Latin-inspired beer. The wine list leans fresh and playful, focusing on low-intervention pours from up-and-coming winemakers in South and Central America.
Top review
avs827vip
Dined 3 days ago
Nice atmosphere, cocktails, and service. Food was delicious. We especially loved the blue crab gratin. Will definitely return.
A photo of The Franklin Room restaurant
4.9
4.9 (1720)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
River North (Chicago)
About the restaurant
The Franklin Room celebrates the sense of connection one can only find in the neighborhood taverns of Chicago. Offering classic American tavern fare and no shortage of whiskey flair, our sophisticated speakeasy is your local go-to for quality meat dishes, fresh seafood, classic cocktails and the neighborhood tavern experience our city has perfected.

Our menu of delectable turn-of-the-century inspired American tavern fare starts there, then elevates the experience with a modern twist that creates a culinary experience you simply have to taste to believe. It's perfectly complimented by our beverage program, which showcases creative cocktails and a meticulous selection of spirits, wine and beer with a strong focus on independent distillers and limited-edition rare releases. Bring them together and you've got a uniquely Chicagoan experience, centuries in the making.


Top review
StephenJ
Dined 3 days ago
Franklin Room did a great job! We were celebrating a couple of birthdays on Saturday and Franklin Room came through for me with special attention and great food and drinks and music! Thank you Franklin Room. Jackson Family!
A photo of Sepia restaurant
4.8
4.8 (4926)
$50 and over
Contemporary American
West Loop
About the restaurant
Seamlessly melding refined and rustic, vintage and contemporary, Sepia has the feel of an instant classic. The stylish space is warm and inviting, comfortable yet lively. The easy elegance of the room serves as the perfect backdrop for the inventive American cuisine. Chef Andrew Zimmerman's product-driven, seasonal menu showcases the purity and quality of the ingredients, letting both the ingredients and his passion for what he does shine through. Sepia celebrates tradition – with a modern twist.

To book reservations of 10 or larger, please email info@sepiachicago.com!

Top review
SallySvip
Dined 6 days ago
The 4 -course meal for $95 was perfect. There are enough choices for each course to find a good one, even for picky eaters. By the last course I was full, and the food was creatively prepared, very tasty.
A photo of Boka restaurant
4.8
4.8 (6668)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Lincoln Park
About the restaurant
Michelin starred Boka Restaurant has been a fixture in Chicago dining since 2003. In January 2014, Chef Lee Wolen joined as Executive Chef/Partner after the restaurant underwent a major renovation. Since his time at Boka, critics have taken notice. Phil Vettel of Chicago Tribune and Eater Chicago both named Lee as “2014 Chef of the Year.” Most recently, Lee was named 2015 “Chef of the Year." Boka’s food features contemporary, American cuisine, focusing on seasonality and sourcing as many local ingredients as possible.
Top review
LiamNvip
Dined 2 days ago
Our server Fernando was wonderful and added so much more to the experience. Food and cocktails were great. The sommelier was amazing and obviously knew his wines and gave us some interesting tidbits about the barolo region and the wine producer.
A photo of Atwater's in The Herrington restaurant
4.9
4.9 (1284)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Geneva
About the restaurant
Atwater's is a waterfront, intimate, fine dining experience in Geneva, IL. Our Executive Chef locally sources our menu and creates classical dishes with a modern touch. Our seasonal menu offers recipes that are nuanced to include ingredients that are at their peak of freshness. Atwater's offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner 7 days a week. Enjoy beautiful water and courtyard views, private dining space, and al fresco dining on our patio in season. Atwater's offers afternoon tea quarterly. We are nestled within The Herrington Inn, which is also a wedding venue, boutique hotel, spa, and corporate meeting venue. Open to the public and hotel guests, 365 days.
Top review
Lakecounty
Dined 4 days ago
A small, quaint dining room. Excellent service and food. We enjoyed the squash soup, delicious entrees, and chocolate covered strawberries.
A photo of Region restaurant
4.8
4.8 (2386)
$31 to $50
Contemporary American
Barrington
About the restaurant
A true neighborhood favorite and highly desired dining destination outside of the city of Chicago. Utilizing the diverse culinary bounty of this great nation, we aim to exceed your gastronomic expectations every visit.
Top review
OpenTable Dinervip
Dined 3 days ago
Always stellar. Never disappoints. Love the special changes and the staples are amazing.
A photo of Girl & the Goat restaurant
4.8
4.8 (13780)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
West Loop
About the restaurant
Girl & the Goat opened in 2010 with the goal of serving a family style menu of tasty, bold flavored foods in a fun and lively setting. To enhance the experience we offer a selection of wines from around the world with a focus on small producers, a rotating list of craft beers, and a list of fun cocktails created by our bartenders. Reservations are encouraged for our dining room, our bar is always available for walk-ins, nomads, adventurers, and those of you who don’t like to plan. Please note: as a way to offset rising costs associated with the restaurant (food, beverage, labor, benefits, supplies), we have added a 3% surcharge to all checks. We do this in lieu of increased menu prices. You may request to have this taken off your check, should you choose.
Top review
MarkJ
Dined 4 days ago
An unforgettable experience. Wonderful, creative and delicious dishes. One of the best restaurants we have ever been to.
A photo of The Chew Chew restaurant
4.8
4.8 (1696)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
Riverside
About the restaurant
The Chew Chew has 27 years of providing great food & hospitality in the quaint Village of Riverside, IL. We are located just one-mile east of the Brookfield Zoo. Happy hour daily 4-6pm. Indoor seating for 100 people (multi-level), full-bar & outdoor patio May-October (weather permitting). Thank you for voting us Chicago's #1 Neighborhood Restaurant on Open Table. If you cannot find a reservation online, please call us direct 708-447-8781. We look forward to serving you soon.
Top review
JudyPvip
Dined 4 days ago
Service and food were outstanding!! Normally we order carryout, it was great enjoying the food and restaurant atmosphere. We will be back!!
A photo of Waterleaf Restaurant - Glen Ellyn restaurant
4.7
4.7 (280)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
Glen Ellyn
About the restaurant
Welcome to our classroom! Waterleaf, located in College of DuPage’s Culinary & Hospitality Center, is a dining experience that offers real-life training to Culinary, Baking & Pastry Arts, and Hospitality students. Patrons will enjoy menus utilizing fresh regional and seasonal ingredients prepared by Culinary & Pastry students as well as attentive service from our student servers.
Limited seating is available at each event and reservations are required. Reservations may be made until an event is sold out. For parties of 6 or more, please call us directly at 630-942-2284.

Top review
Watermelonvip
Dined on 22 Feb 2024
All four diners enjoyed their lunch from beginning to end. Each course was presented attractively and was served at the proper temperature. All courses were delicious! Our server Cassie was personable and attentive and met our needs and expectations.
A photo of NM Café - Northbrook restaurant
4.9
4.9 (604)
$30 and under
Contemporary American
Northbrook
About the restaurant
THE NM CAFE located in Neiman Marcus NORTHBROOK is open to socially distanced seating, in accordance with local jurisdiction guidelines.

Laid-back luxe. Experience delightful dishes in a casual, contemporary atmosphere at the NM Café® NORTHBROOK. Muted lighting and understated, modern decor create the perfect environment for a midday retreat. Whether dining with a group or simply ordering upscale take-out, expect delectable food and exceptional service that is synonymous with Neiman Marcus.


Let The NM Cafe® host your next Baby or Bridal Shower. We have the perfect atmosphere and menu for you and your guests.

Top review
Maureen
Dined on 20 Feb 2024
Our waiter was excellent and helped us enjoy a special birthday lunch. Highly recommend this restaurant.
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