“Despite its obscure location among the industrial warehouses of far-east Wicker Park, adventurous diners have no trouble seeking out Ada St.,” say our anonymous inspectors. For the season, chef de cuisine Bridget Close is dishing up fried green tomatoes with avocado cream, corn salsa, watermelon and feta; elote dip of grilled corn and cotija cheese; and grilled Faroe Island salmon with chimichurri, summer succotash and farro.
At husband-and-wife duo Chris and Nina Nugent’s contemporary one-Michelin-starred restaurant near Lincoln Square, ingredients are both locally-sourced and intricately plated. New summer dishes include corn soup with crab, potato and sunflower foam; Nina’s pasta with summer truffle, English peas, Parmesan and Pecorino; and diver scallops with lemongrass, coconut and lobster.
A distinctive Korean thread runs through the menu at Johnny Clark and Beverly Kim’s hip bistro on North Elston Avenue. For the summer season, be on the lookout for rigatoni with sweet corn, X.O. and summer truffles (pictured above); summer fluke nigiri with citron kosho, honey and wasabi; and soft shell crabs with black bean sauce and cucumbers. Cap off the night with patbing su with summer berries, condensed milk ice cream and marigold or cherry and black sesame sorbet.
At this Lakeview eatery, chef/owner Iliana Regan “works serious magic in this kitchen, tossing in sprinkles of Midwestern ingredients as well as a liberal dose of wonderful wackiness with Japanese-inspired izakaya cooking,” per our inspectors. Dishes are as fun as they are delicious—look for menu newcomers like hamachi crudo with strawberries, matcha-cucumber, sansho-flax togarashi and basil; Szechuan pastrami bao complete with rye-caraway bun; and a doughnut with juneberry and yuzu glaze.
Chef/owner Stephanie Izard just celebrated her West Loop mainstay’s eighth anniversary, and survey says there is no signs of slowing down. For summer, Izard is serving up menu items like Florida rock shrimp with aguachile; goat empanadas with smoked blueberries and grilled pineapple pico de gallo, roasted poblano cream and queso fresco; and a blueberry Bourbon baba (pictured above) on the menu.
At the one-Michelin-starred restaurant in the West Loop, chef/owner Andrew Zimmerman takes seasonal ingredients very seriously, highlighting the very best of what local purveyors have to offer. New to the menu are sea scallops, porcini mushrooms, peaches and pancetta and sweet corn purée-stuffed blue masa tortelloni served with Grana Padano cheese, chanterelles and summer truffles. For dessert, check out pastry chef Sarah Mispagel’s strawberry crostata with pistachio, coconut and strawberry buttermilk ice cream.