Q: What were your top restaurant standbys of 2014?
Melissa McEwen, Chicagoist: TWO, Vera, The Garage, Sumi Robata Bar.
Penny Pollack, Chicago Magazine: Moon Palace in Chinatown (for scrambled eggs with shrimp), Original Pancake House in the Gold Coast (for The 49ers), RJ Grunts in Lincoln Park (for a burger).
Mike Gebert, Reader: Normally I don't go back to places over and over, at least above the hot dogs for the kids level, but I've been to The Radler 4 or 5 times, Tete Charcuterie 3 times, Parachute 3 times... it's like I'm dining like a normal person or something. Also, Ivy's, for hot dogs for the kids.
Amy Cavanaugh, Time Out Chicago: I'm constantly looking for excuses to go to The Roost for fried chicken sandwiches, Smalls Smoke Shack & More for whatever special they have scrawled on the daily menu, and Red Hot Ranch in Lakeview for a late-night burger if I've been out on the town. And Analogue, which is a bar, but has such good food that it counts.
Sarah Freeman, Zagat: I loved the increase of restaurants and bars catering to the neighborhood — less overthought small plates, more good food and drinks. That being said, as a resident of West Town, I found myself at The Winchester, Charlatan and Sportsman's Club more often than I care to admit.
Chandra Ram, Plate: I went to TWO a lot — it was my go-to. I love those guys, and the food is just so solid.
Michael Nagrant, RedEye: Pequods, Nhu Lan Bakery, Au Cheval, Little Goat, MFK.
Chris LaMorte, UrbanDaddy: Kameya, a super tiny, mom-and-pop spot for noodles, bibimbop and amazing bolgolgi.