Chicago's Ultimate Modern Steakhouse Guide

People take notice when you mention Michelin-starred restaurants, so when the famed tire company and Harris Poll queried more than 2,000 U.S. adults on the type of restaurants they prefer to splurge, we paid attention as well. The survey occurred summer 2015 and a quarter of participants said that steakhouse cuisine is their favorite choice for dining.

That's great news for Chicago's dining scene, where the majority of higher-end eateries fit the bill. From the historic stockyards on the South Side to sceney Gold Coast restaurants doubling as "meet markets," Chicago boasts an obsession with steakhouses. Iconic establishments like Gene & Georgetti, Gibsons and Morton's of Chicago set the status quo for what to expect in a classic steakhouse, but there's a whole new crop of spots re-defining the concept in modern terms.

Our favorites range from a farm-to-table-focused eatery in River North to an Argentine-styled steakhouse by an "Iron Chef" champion.

01 of 09

Bavette's Bar & Boeuf

Bavette's Bar & Boeuf
218 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60654, USA
Phone +1 312-624-8154

The Concept: This French-inspired steakhouse based in River North is certainly a special place. From its intriguing basement lounge to the very date-friendly vibe of the main dining room, Bavette's is in a class by itself. While the upstairs setting can be a bit intense at times, the lower level feels like a funky den where music varies from Parisian-focused house and acid jazz to old-school hip-hop.

Choice Cuts: Menu favorites include a 22-ounce, bone-in, dry-aged ribeye and a 16-ounce classic ribeye. Diners may enhance their steaks with accompaniments such as wild mushrooms or roasted bone marrow.

Non-Steak Standouts: Other highlights include shellfish towers of oysters, jumbo shrimp and lobster; buttermilk fried chicken; and shortrib Stroganoff with hand-cut fettuccine and cremini mushroom.

Behind the Bar: The menu is comprised of French cocktails (including sparkling classics French 75 and Kir Royale), classic cocktails, an extensive whiskey menu and a nice selection of craft beers.

Private Dining Room(s): No

Additional Info: 218 W. Kinzie St., 312-624-8154

02 of 09

Roka Akor

Roka Akor Chicago
456 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654, USA
Phone +1 312-477-7652

The Concept: The Japanese-inspired restaurant serves up steak and sushi in an ultra-chic setting. While the Chicago outpost is one of four locations in the country (there is another in the Chicago suburb of Old Orchard), the Arizona-based company manages to make each one feel completely original. One of the highlights is the robata grill, where meats, seafood and vegetables are grilled for optimum flavor.

Choice Cuts: Japanese wagyu, which is complemented by artisanal sauces and dressings, including tableside shaved truffles, wafu dressing (savory soy vinaigrette), chili ginger and black truffle-infused aioli. Of course it is prepared on the robata grill.

Non-Steak Standouts: The extensive sushi menu, plus roasted king crab and Madagascan jumbo tiger prawn, which are also cooked on the robata grill

Behind the Bar: You'll find one of the most comprehensive sake menus in town at Roka Akor, plus Japanese beer and whiskey. The seasonal cocktails are Japanese influenced.

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 456 N. Clark St., 312-477-7652

03 of 09

III Forks

III Forks
180 N Field Blvd, Chicago, IL 60601, USA
Phone +1 312-938-4303

The Concept: The Texas-based chain boasts only two outposts outside of the South (including one at LAX airport), with the Chicago location offering its famed, larger-than-life portions of supreme steaks and chops. III Forks' glass-encased wine room showcases more than 3,000 bottles, which includes many rare finds. Situated in Lakeshore East's upscale cul-de-sac, the restaurant attracts a like-minded clientele who comes for dinner, after-work drinks or settles upon the sprawling rooftop lounge. It's one of a few steakhouses in the city with a rooftop lounge.

Choice Cuts: The 18-ounce Durham Ranch Wagyu New York strip, filet mignon and USDA prime boneless ribeye are very popular cuts. Guests may top their selections Oscar style or with lobster Béarnaise. Before the main event arrives, guests get to choose from an array of steak knives.

Non-Steak Standouts: Wild yellow tail hamachi, lobster risotto and roast chicken topped with roasted red pepper sauce are some of the best bets on the dinner menu. Guests may also order lamb meatballs and lobster rolls from the rooftop menu.

Behind the Bar: The restaurant features more than 3,000 bottles of wine, more than 30 by the glass, and a number of original and classic cocktails.

Private Dining Room(s): 3

Additional Info: 180 N. Field Blvd., 312-938-4303

04 of 09

Chicago Cut

Chicago Cut Steakhouse
300 N LaSalle Dr, Chicago, IL 60654, USA
Phone +1 312-329-1800

The Concept: The swanky riverside steakhouse is open daily for breakfast and it's not even located in a hotel. That's because it's on the ground floor of a contemporary office building filled with attorneys and CPAs. Guests may nosh on steak and eggs every day accompanied by one of the best views in the city. It's also a celebrity magnet that has attracted the likes of Beyonce, Jay-Z, Mark Wahlberg and Kate Upton.

Choice Cuts: The bone-in prime rib, a.k.a. "The Holy Grail," is a best seller as well as the double cuts for two (Châteaubriand, Porterhouse, bone-in ribeye) and marinated Cajun ribeye. The steaks are aged for 35 days and butchered on premises. Unconventional additions include truffle salt and foie gras.

Non-Steak Standouts: Oven-roasted citrus chicken, sun-dried tomato jalapeno fettuccine and sake-glazed Chilean sea bass are some of the top options.

Behind the Bar: The wine list's so extensive that it's on iPads that servers carry around with them. The cocktail list is comprised of classic and contemporary sippers.

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 300 N. LaSalle St., 312-329-1800

Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09

Fig & Olive

Fig & Olive
104 E Oak St, Chicago, IL 60611, USA
Phone +1 312-445-0060

The Concept: Rooted in the rich and elegant cuisine from the Riviera and coastal regions of the South of France, Italy and Spain, Fig & Olive incorporates the best olives oils from those places as well. The chef-driven restaurant aims for seasonality throughout the year and works with a number of local farmers and purveyors for premium ingredients.

Choice Cuts: Steaks and chops are just as popular as the house-made pastas and risottos, and enhanced, of course, with signature olive oils. One of the best is cote de boeuf, a 36-ounce, bone-in ribeye in short rib jus reduction bearnaise and served with roasted potatoes. It serves two.

Non-Steak Standouts: Seasonal pastas, risottos and the roasted whole branzino for two

Behind the Bar: Classic and original cocktails, plus more than 30 wine varietals from the South of France, Italy and Spain that are offered by the glass.

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 104 E. Oak St., 312-445-0060

06 of 09

Prime & Provisions

Nathan Michael
222 N LaSalle St, Chicago, IL 60601, USA
Phone +1 312-726-7777

The Concept: Leave it to the guys behind the glamorous, celebrity magnet Siena Tavern to open this sprawling, showy steakhouse in a 100-year-old building. Prime & Provisions feels extremely modern, yet at the same time you get the impression that it's been modeled after one of those vintage, luxurious dining railroad cars. The 12,000-square-foot venue accommodates 300. It's directly across from the Chicago River where you may experience the Chicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise. It's also a quick stroll to the Chicago Riverwalk.

Choice Cuts: Prime & Provisions is the first Chicago steakhouse to source only U.S.D.A. all natural prime heritage black Angus beef. The artisanal Kansas beef product is known to be humanely raised and never exposed to hormones, antibiotics or pesticides. Diners may indulge in a number of possibilities, but the hand-cut, barrel-cut filet and an impressive center-cut Porterhouse for four are some of the highlights.

Non-Steak Standouts: Crispy fried chicken that's paired with chili bourbon maple drizzle, the classic chicken Vesuvio and chilled Alaskan king crab legs that come with meyer lemon mustard sauce

Behind the Bar: A host of classic drinks, plus a champagne and wine list catering to the one percent

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 222 N. LaSalle St., 312-726-7777

07 of 09

Revolucion Mexican Steakhouse

Revolucion Mexican Steakhouse
3443 N Broadway, Chicago, IL 60657, USA

The Concept: This Mexican-inspired steakhouse takes its concept seriously and is more than a colorful atmosphere and classic Latin fare. It introduces diners to a new way of enjoying authentic Mexican cuisine. You won't find any other steakhouse in the city with such crave-worthy sides like grilled cactus salad, caramelized fried plantains or guajillo-cotija fries.

Choice Cuts: All the steaks and chops, including the 18-ounce t-bone and full rack of lamb, are topped with a signature ancho-garlic butter. For an extra $2, diners may order the steak crusted with cotija-gorgonzola, Mexican-style Cajun rub or epazote ancho bread crumbs.

Non-Steak Standouts: Grilled salmon in mango chimichurri, oven-roasted chicken in a tamarind-chipotle BBQ sauce or ancho-coconut fried shrimp

Behind the Bar: Premium margaritas

Private Dining Room(s): 3

Additional Info: 3443 North Broadway, 773-661-9893

08 of 09

RPM Steak

RPM Steak
66 W Kinzie St, Chicago, IL 60654, USA
Phone +1 312-284-4990

The Concept: Another celebrity magnet, RPM Steak showcases a dazzling, glamorous dining room where you can see what's going on in every corner of the room. Its claim to fame are the juicy, grass-fed steaks and bison--plus table service harking back to the golden age.

Choice Cuts: The eight-ounce bison filet, plus old-fashioned, butcher's cuts of 16-ounce of prime boot steak and short rib steak. Both cut like butter. There's also the 60-day, prime dry-aged, 38-ounce ribeye.

Non-Steak Standouts: Broiled black cod, coal-roasted chicken and spicy miso-roasted Maine lobster

Behind the Bar: The wine list goes deep and is comprehensive, plus there is a cocktail menu full of the classics.

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 66 W. Kinzie St., 312-284-4990

Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09

Swift & Sons

Eric Kleinberg
1000 W Fulton Market, Chicago, IL 60607-1212, USA
Phone +1 312-733-9420

The Concept: Boka Restaurant Group teamed up with B. Hospitality Co. for the well-celebrated Swift & Sons, located in the Fulton Market Meatpacking District, which pays homage to the area's heritage that dates back to the 1920s. Cold Storage, Swift & Sons' "restaurant within a restaurant," is a 60-seat seafood eatery specializing in oysters, mussels and other raw bar favorites. Swift & Sons also offers an in-house concierge desk. During hours of operation, the concierge will be on hand to provide memorable and personalized experiences, such as restaurant and hotel reservations, floral arrangements, auto detailing, premium theater and concert tickets and gift purchasing.

Choice Cuts: Get ready for a number of high quality cuts of “boutique beef,” including a 38-ounce, dry-aged cote de boeuf, 36-ounce Porterhouse, 24-ounce bone-in ribeye, 14-ounce bone-in fillet and A5 Japanese Wagyu.

Non-Steak Standouts: Highlights include roast chicken "grand mere" and lobster a la nage.

Behind the Bar: The menu spotlights craft beer, specialty cocktails and a 600-plus bottle wine list and 30 wines by the glass.

Private Dining Room(s): 1

Additional Info: 1000 W. Fulton Market, 312-733-9420

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Chicago's Ultimate Modern Steakhouse Guide