Best Chicago Eats Near McCormick Place

I’ll be in Chicago for a cookware trade show in early March. I’d like to plan 4 dinners and 4 lunches within easy travel (cab, El, walk) distance of McCormick Place.

I’m not looking for haute cuisine this trip, more for where locals go for their favorite meals and best-in-class ethnic and specialty genres (deep pizza, brats, Italian Beef, etc.). Bonus points for real character and value. BEEEG demerits for tourist traps/affect. And I get plenty of seafood at home, so no try…


Tons of options, just a few blocks away. My favorite is Reggie’s ( @ 2105 S. State St. Awesome menu, great food deals every week night and tons of character. Across the street and north a block are Cafe Bionda (great Italian) and Opart Thai. Flo and Santo’s @ 1310 S. Wabash St is a touch farther, but they do really good and different pizza, sometimes with a Polish slant (my first pizza there was Italian Beef, giardiniera and Kielbasa sausage). Chinatown is a hop, skip, and a jump away, walking distance or a quick cab. Lao Sze Chuan is one of the best and Tony’s three chili chicken is amazing. Ricobene’s is down on 26th street, and the breaded steak sandwich there is a Chicago institution. Go to Gino’s East in South Loop for deep dish pizza (get the sausage patty as your topping). Finally, no trip to Chicago is complete without going to Portillo’s. This is the closest to touristy that I am suggesting, but the Italian Beef there is legendary.

That is 8 options, and I have done them all for dinner or lunch from McCormick Place.

Thank you so much!

For deep dish pizza you have to go to pequots, almost all others are tourist traps.

It recently took 2nd in the nation. The only Chicago pizzeria to make the list