chicago brunch bucket list

The weather outside is frightful but for sure but the thought of brunch can make your day a little more delightful. Whether its classic American fare you're after, or something a little more exotic, this Chicago brunch bucket list contains restaurants worth the effort required to put on pants and go out.

The Lakefront

2401 N Lake Shore Drive

If brunch with a view is what you're after, look no further than The Lakefront. Dig into plates of French toast topped with fruity pebbles, with Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline in sight. Another must-try is the Brunch Toast, which is topped with sausage, pesto, and fried eggs, served with fried potatoes. This brunch treat pairs well with their signature drink, The Undertow. Take note though, brunch is only available during the weekend.


65 W Kinzie St

For an authentic Mexican fiesta, Top Chef alum Kenji Tanabe’s restaurant Barrio should be your go-to for Chicago brunch. His River North restaurant features inventive Mexican plates, such as churro french toast, topped with dragon fruit, pineapple, and horchata whipped cream. Order this with a coffee or hot chocolate to warm your tummy. Another favorite brunch item is the barbacoa short rib hash, served with sweet potatoes and hollandaise, which goes well with their guava mimosa specialty cocktail.


1800 S Carpenter St

HaiSous has expanded their service to brunch hours so that regular patrons can have their fill of Vietnamese favorites in the morning. Since they've offered brunch, Chef Thai Dang’s brunch menu has been a hit with both critics and diners alike, who flock to the tiny Pilsen place for green papaya salad and crispy rice crepes filled with prawns.

Warm your stomachs with dishes like rice porridge with clams, and the acclaimed beef pho, a recipe from Chef Thai Dang’s mom. While HaiSous offers alcohol like mimosas and punch, the Vietnamese coffee with egg custard shouldn’t be missed.


205 E Pearson St

If you're going out of the house anyway, why not make a whole day out of it? Start with brunch at Marisol, the in-house restaurant of the Museum of Contemporary Art. Chef Jason Hammel’s approaches his menu with the same creativity as the art displays, choosing to focus on seasonal ingredients. Feast on a wide array of dishes, including steak and eggs with chili aioli, lemon poppy seed French toast, or the Marisol Salad, made with butter lettuce, apple, dill, macadamia nuts, and pecorino cheese.

Loading up on these goodies will surely fuel you up an afternoon of viewing the museum’s exhibits.

Mable’s Table

1655 W Cortland St

Named after Chef Anthony Reyes’ mom, Mable’s Table should be your go-to for a taste of homestyle cooking. New takes on family favorites, such as truffle risotto topped with smoked cherry bacon and sunny side up eggs, share menu space with eclectic finds, such as a bulgogi bowl of ribeye and eggs and pastrami-style salmon.

Final Thoughts: A Chicago Brunch Bucket List for the Snowy Days Ahead

While these are some of my favorites, I’d love to hear about your Chicago brunch bucket list. What would you add here? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!