It’s finally time to enjoy the summer weather and dine outdoors in Chicago! One of my absolute favorite things about living in Chicago is the food of course, so when a restaurant has a good rooftop or patio, it instantly gets my heart. I constantly get asked for recommendations on restaurants and bars, so I decided to round-up my top 15 places for the perfect outdoor dining! There are a mixture of rooftops and patios, both trendy and casual- so it’s safe to say there is definitely something on the list for everyone.
If there are any that I missed, or any you’d recommend, I’d love to hear about them!!
This new restaurant/bar in River North features eclectic menu items such as Grilled Spanish Octopus Tacos and Fried Amish Chicken. The inside decor is awesome and definitely instagram-worthy! 🙂
Located in Streeterville, this outdoor terrace space has a gorgeous view of the city and is perfect for a date-night or girls night out. I highly recommend the Ricotta Cavatelli, it’s to die for!
The Fremont is located in the previous American Junkie location, which is the perfect River North hot spot. This Vegas-esque rooftop serves American cuisine and turns into the ultimate night-life spot after dinner. Perfect for birthday parties or bachelorette parties, but also a great spot to grab a bite and a brew!
This rooftop overlooks Milennium Park and has some of the best views yet! It’s located in the Chicago Athletic Association hotel, If you are looking to get off of Michigan Avenue, but look down from above- this is the perfect spot to be. The Lox and Bagels is a must for brunch!
RM is definitely a romantic spot, but their patio is absolutely adorable! Think a cobblestone alley with a Parisian-style oasis and french inspired cuisine. They also make amazing drinks… My favorite is “Flower Patch Kids,” how cute is that name?!
A West Loop must- and now a new location right along the Riverwalk! Their award winning wine list has over 400 unique bottles from all over the world as well as 20 in-house produced wine. In my opinion, I prefer this place for a Happy Hour drink, but they do have some pretty killer cheese and meats to pair with the wine!
201 E. Delaware Pl. 312-933-4805
1072 N. Milwaukee Ave. 773-772-4322
Located in the up and coming West Town neighborhood, this place is a favorite of my friends and I. The menu consists of super interesting items such as Hot Fried Alligator Legs, Turtle Bolognese, and Venison Shepherd’s Pie, to take you outside of your comfort zone. They also provide a full-animal service including Goat, Wild Boar, Pig and Lamb- which would be so much fun to experience for a party as they serve around 10-15 adults.
This urban sanctuary is located 7 stories above Michigan Avenue in the Hyatt Hotel. The cocktails are hand-crafted and so so good, not to mention it was rated as one of the top roof-top brunches in Chicago. This is a perfect spot for a girls night or date-night.
Howell’s and Hood is a more casual but lively place right off of Michigan Ave. The patio here is massive and they have the biggest and best craft beer list in Chicago- what could be better?! While your enjoying a beer, try the gourmet tots- they are amazing!!
This pizza place is not your typical Chicago-style pizza restaurant, however their pizza list offers a variety of different ingredients to please any palate. In addition to their huge patio, they also have a rooftop bar. Keep in mind, on warmer days this place gets packed and they won’t seat you until everyone in your party has arrived, so get there early to get a good spot outside.
Located in Lincoln Park’s New City complex, this restaurant (which originally started in Canada) was named one of the top companies to work for in 2016 and after visiting here last weekend, I can see why. Every member of the staff was SO nice and you could tell they really enjoyed working there. The menu has a variety of different options such as Sushi rolls, Ribs and Chicken and also boasts an amazing lounge area with couches and fire places.
One of Wicker Parks best rooftop bars, offers tons of TV’s and a massive whiskey list (hence the name). This is a perfect after-work spot, or great for meeting up with some friends for some day drinking on the weekend. Try the Crab Cake stuffed burger!
Big Star is a bourbon and beer-focused, taco-slinging, late-night honky-tonk in the heart of Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. If you are looking for a great spot to enjoy Mexican street food, you will love this spot. They also have a great drink menu and a shot special everyday of the week!
The J Parker is located above Hotel Lincoln, right on the border of Old Town and Lincoln Park and offers phenomenal views of the entire city. They serve small plates created by award winning chef Paul Virant and amazing curated cocktails- My favorite is the ‘Ziggy Stardust’!
201 E. Delaware Pl. 312-933-4805
Drumbar is also a small plates type of roof top, offering dishes like Crispy Meatball and Truffle Parmasean chips, but is mainly known for their libations. Their spirit menu consists of earnestly sought after whiskeys, scotches, bourbon and cognacs- all which are available by the glass. There is also amazing views of the Hancock and Lake Michigan!!