Chicago sure knows how to make a girl miss her.

Now that’s a city skyline. 

You’re probably familiar with Michelin for their tires and for their restaurant guide (an obvious extension of their business model).  The guide awards the prestigious Michelin star(s) to restaurants they deem as “very good”, “excellent”, or “exceptional” (a big frigging deal in the restaurant world).  Well, according to Wiki, “since 1955, the guide has also highlighted restaurants offering “good food at moderate prices”, a feature now called “Bib Gourmand”.  They must offer menu items priced below a maximum determined by local economic standards.”  In Chicago, this means restaurants serving two courses and a glass of wine or dessert for $40 or less.

(FYI, Bib (Bibendum) is the company’s nickname for the Michelin Man, its corporate logo)

This guy knows good food.  And, tires.

The complete list of 56 Chicago Bib Gourmand winners are below.  I’ve linked the ones I’ve gone to and can vouch for, but there are certainly many others I’ve heard great things about and have been wanting to check out.

I die for this bone marrow at Gilt Bar

Ann Sather


Avec – Been a long while, so I don’t remember it well, but I enjoyed it. 

Belly Shack


The Bristol


Ceres’ Table


De Cero




Frontera Grill

Gemini Bistro

Gilt Bar – Food and cocktails are delicious.  Plus, the sommelier is super cute.  ;)

Girl & The Goat

Green Zebra – Delicious vegetarian food.  Yes, R, there is such a thing.

GT Fish & Oyster

Han 202



Jin Thai

Kabul House

La Creperie

La Petite Folie

Lao Sze Chuan – My favorite Chinatown spot for spicy szechuan cuisine.  Awesome hot pot.

Los Nopales

Lula Café – Excellent brunch.

M. Henry

Maude’s Liquor Bar – Same folks as Gilt Bar.  Had some great food and wine there.


Mixteco Grill

Mundial Cocina Mestiza



Opart Thai House

Owen & Engine

Paramount Room

Perennial Virant

The Publican

The Purple Pig – The girls took me there for my bday dinner one year.  Love their pork belly. 

Raj Darbar

Riccardo Trattoria



Smoque BBQ – Casual BBQ spot and super delicious.  Been a while, but I think I got the brisket.

Sol de Mexico

Spacca Napoli

Taste of Peru

Thai Village

Twin Anchors – Had a bday dinner here as well.  Awesome ribs.   

Urban Belly

West Town Tavern

Xni-Pec de Yucatan


Looks like I’ll be going down this list during my visits back home.

Until then, I just found a list of 99 essential L.A. restaurants created by Jonathan Gold of the LA Weekly.  That should keep me busy for a while.  Off Gold’s list, I’ve been to Bottega Louie (yum), Din Tai Fung (ages ago, but yum), and Father’s Office (good, but not amazing, burger).  Here’s my short list of places I’d like to check out next: Animal, Cut, Good Girl Dinette, Lazy Ox Canteen, Mo-Chica, and Park’s BBQ.

What LA restaurants do you think are must-trys?  Which Chicago Bib Gourmands do I absolutely have to go to on my next visit? 

(I do miss Chicago, but R just reminded me that the high is 32 over there today while over here it’s 75. Maybe I’m not in that much of a rush to get back.)

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3 thoughts on “Chicago sure knows how to make a girl miss her.

  1. […] foods for $4; (3) it’s on Jonathan Gold’s list of 99 essential LA restaurants that we’re eating our way through; and (4) their happy hour is ALL DAY EVERY […]

  2. […] been wanting to go to Park’s BBQ since I first moved to LA.  Multiple people have recommended it, it’s […]

  3. […] Thai Town restaurant because (1) Anthony Bourdain told me to go; (2) Jonathan Gold told me to go (one of his 99); and (3) the Boat Noodle Soup is a dish I’m supposed to eat before I die. Boat Noodle Soup […]

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