Restaurant Week 2016: Reservations now open

Restaurant Week 2016: Reservations now open
Newly opened hotspot GreenRiver is one of the 354 restaurants participating in Chicago Restaurant Week 2016

Earlier today you grabbed those hot theatre tickets for Chicago Theatre Week, now it’s time to make your reservations for Chicago Restaurant Week 2016. Some of the hottest restaurants in Chicago–a total of 354–are offering special deals with prix fixe menus starting at $22 for lunch and $33 and/or $44 for dinner (excluding beverages, tax and gratuity). Such a deal! Such a steal!

Reservations opened at noon today for Chicago Restaurant Week 2016 which runs from January 22 through February 4.

The deals allow diners the opportunity, in many cases, to enjoy a gourmet meal where one may have to pay 3 or 4 times as much at any other time of the year for a bargain price–kind of a Chicago Gourmet on steroids. There’s no lines, no plastic cups or paper plates–it’s the real deal.

A typical Restaurant Week menu may look something like this dinner menu from Chez Moi a comfortable French Bistro in Lincoln Park.

Chez Moi Chef/owner Dominique Tougne

Chez Moi Chef/owner Dominique Tougne

RESTAURANT WEEK 2016
Appetizers:
Cauliflower cream with cumin and truffle oil
or
Belgium style mussel, leeks and bacon
or
Root vegetables farmer salad, figs and Balsamic dressing
Entrees:
Duck a l’orange hamburger with pan seared foie gras
or
Lamb shoulder stew en croute, Dauphinois potatoes
or
Almond crusted trout, sautéed spinach, lemon butter sauce
Desserts:
Chez Moi famous gateau Breton, caramel sauce
or
Home made bread pudding, vanilla ice cream
or
Chocolate mousse
Prix fixe $44

Some menus even include a beverage like the $33 lunch/dinner menu from HELLOTACOS! de cero–a modern Mexican taqueria–that has received the coveted Bib Gourmand Michelin Restaurant award three years in a row. Plus they serve their tacos on housemade tortillas.

Here’s their choice of beverages to compliment the rest of the meal:

Beverage
Choose one:
House Citrus Margarita
Cucumber with Chile Salt Margarita
Jicama with Chile Salt Margarita
Oaxacan Margarita with Gusano Salt
Modelo Especial
Whiskey Margarita
Scotch & Horchata
Cucumber & Ginger Gin Mule

The menu continues with a choice of two Salsas, served with house made chips. A Starter of Guacamole (avocado, garlic, onion, jalapeño, tomato, cilantro, lemon, lime) or an Open-faced Tamale with choice of pork, chicken mole or spicy masa goat cheese.

This is followed by a choice of 3 Tacos  served with either vegetarian black beans & rice or bacon pinto beans & rice. Diners can select from Grilled Skirt Steak, Hatch Chile Ground Beef, Spicy Chorizo Sausage, Sage Fried Chicken, Battered Catfish, Crispy Whitefish, Tres Queso, Rajas Peppers or Garlic Black Bean.

The grande finale is a choice of one from their Sweet Bites menu that features Mexican Chocolate Brownie, coconut gelato or Horchata Bread Pudding.

You can get the entire list of restaurants, their menus and make reservations, here. Each restaurant is a little different. Some offer lunch and dinner, others offer only lunch or dinner. Some are open throughout restaurant week, others on selected days. Some deals are better than others so check them out carefully and then make reservations, asap.

Added to the 2016 Chicago Restaurant Week lineup are 54 new places including these trending choices: Appellation, The Blanchard, Cherry Circle Room, GreenRiver, Intro, Monteverde, Oyster Bah, Prime & Provisions and Seven Lions.

If you want to get a sampling of what’s ahead for 2016 Restaurant Week, the First Bites Bash, the official kick-off event/preview, featuring 60 of the participating restaurants in Chicago Restaurant Week comes to Union Station on Thursday, January 21. You can purchase tickets here.

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