For the perfect dinner with a view.
We may be miles away from the ocean but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy some top-notch waterfront views. From bohemian hideouts by the river to beachy hangouts by the lake, these 10 stunning waterfront spots are all open for outdoor dining and offer the perfect spot for drinks or dinner. Scroll down to our map below to check out the ones close to you!
At this bohemian oasis by the river, you can enjoy a range of dishes and drinks that are as eclectic as its retro decoration. The dinner menu is teeming with mouthwatering international dishes from Latinamerican Huitlacoche Arepas ($19), with duck confit, grilled corn, green mole, mustard greens, to Mediterranean Fatoush Salad ($14) with Persian cucumber, baby kale, kalamata olives, Parsley, fried pita, lemon vinaigrette!
Sipping on a glass of Pinot Noir while enjoying a buttery-soft steak is even more enjoyable when done al-fresco and by the river. At Chicago Cut Steakhouse you’ll be able to enjoy some of the best steaks in the city paired with an extraordinary wine list featuring options from all around the world.
Spend an afternoon in the Italian Riviera without moving from the Chicago riverfront! An excellent Italian riverfront option, Pizzeria Portofino offers delectable hand-stretched pizza and refreshing Italian wines that will transport you to the Italian Riviera in just a sip and a bite!
At Porter Kitchen & Deck you’ll be able to enjoy some excellent new American bites such as their signature steak frites ($24) or their award-winning cheeseburger ($17) with one-year aged cheddar, prime beef, and onion jam. Their drink menu offers a wide variety of summer-inspired concoctions including a “cucumber collins” and a “watermelon mojito” (both $13) which are perfect for the hot weather!
5. River Roast
This gorgeous riverside enclave is perfect for cozying up while enjoying some soul-warming bites! As the name suggests, River Roast offers a New American take on British classics with its wide variety of meat, fish, and veggies that are roasted and carved tableside. If you choose to go for brunch on the weekends, you’ll also be able to catch a live show by some of Chicago’s finest Blues musicians!
6. RPM Seafood
This riverside eatery is a must if you’re a seafood fan. RPM Seafood opened up its double-decker terrace last year and offers a wide variety of seafood options, all the way from platters of chilled oysters ($19) to Wild Alaskan Halibut ($39) and King Crab Mac n’ Cheese ($36)!
This three-story steakhouse in the West Loop offers awesome homemade pasta dishes and premium steak cuts as well as other Italian delicacies. From Italian Meatballs ($13) to an incredible Ravioli Carbonara ($40) you can be sure you’ll be heading home more than satisfied. Pair that with a side of gorgeous Chicago riverfront views and you’ve got yourself the recipe for a totally delightful evening!
At Raised you get a little bit of everything. The indoor/outdoor Raised rooftop offers scintillating views from three floors above ground level and yet you’re not too high up to feel like you’re far away from the city’s pulse. It’s a rooftop overlooking the river that still offers the vibrant energy you get being in the mix of downtown Chicago. You can gaze out at sweeping views if the Chicago River and Chicago’s sensational skyline from one of the best spots in the city.
Seasonal menus, a trendy urban aesthetic, and a fantastic array of sharing options mean it’s the perfect waterside spot to hang out with friends.
10. Waterfront Cafe
This gorgeous lakeside spot is perfect for a casual, laid-back evening with friends or with your pooch (Waterfront is a dog-friendly establishment). At this seasonal patio, you’ll be able to enjoy some nautical-inspired bites such as 100% Chilled Maine Lobster with lemon caper aioli ($24.00) or a Blackened Cajun Shrimp Roll ($14.50) paired with ice-cold buckets of your favorite beer. The perfect beachy evening!
Nearer to the heart of Chicago, situated on the popular North Avenue Beach is Shore Club Chicago. The world-class food and three different hangout spaces make it a fantastic place to go for a bite to eat or drinks at any time of the day. In addition to ‘the Patio’ and ‘the Oasis’, there is Shore Club’s trendy restaurant space featuring a temperature-controlled room with floor-to-ceiling windows and a coastal vibe. Flooded with natural light and offering unobstructed views of Lake Michigan, it is impossible not to feel at ease in this bright and breezy setting.
12. Offshore Rooftop
As the world’s largest rooftop venue according to the Guinness World Records, it’s hard to ignore Offshore’s 20,000 square foot terrace on top of Navy Pier’s Festival Hall.
From a vantage point at the end of the Pier, the all-season and all-weather venue boasts offers unmatched views of Lake Michigan and the City Skyline bettered only by the views available sailing the lake itself. Seven cozy firepits provide warmth when the nights get chilly and an entertainment area gives extra opportunity to bring little ones. A full-service bar and world-class kitchen inside offer all you could want while enjoying the calm of Lake Michigan.
[Featured image from Instagram / @gibsonsitalia]