Chicago’s restaurant writers dish on their biggest surprises of 2020 as part of Eater’s ongoing tradition of polling the city’s experts for their year-end takes.
Michael Nagrant, michaelnagrant.com: The Only Restaurants Left in Chicago Belong to Stephanie Izard
Grant Achatz Doubles Down on Early Pandemic Menu with New National Chain, the Corona Kitchen, Featuring Dishes Like “Hot Forehead, Cold Forehead,” “Black Plague Explosion,” and “Swine Flu Porchetta”
Ghostface Killah Launches New Line of Ghost Kitchens Starting with Wu Tang Wings
Chicagoans Complain They Now Have Too Many Bagel and Pizza Options
Alderman Tom Tunney Passes Law Outlawing Cinnamon Rolls at All Restaurants Not Named Ann Sather
Biden Launches National Restaurant Bailout Plan Called “Our People Paid,” aka OPP, With Live Performance By Naughty by Nature
Frustrated With COVID-19 Vaccine Delivery, Nick Kokonas Launches “Shot,” A Hyper-Efficient Service That Provides Corona Vaccine Infused with Malört in the Aviary’s Porthole Serveware
Ryan McCaskey Claims He Would Have Gotten Away With Everything “If it wasn’t for those meddling kids!”
Morgan Olsen, Time Out Chicago: Ghost kitchens expected to outnumber dine-in restaurants by July
Aaron Oliver, Seasoned and Blessed: Now Serving: Resilience
Pivot to Prosper
The new restaurant landscape in Chicago
Bridging the Restaurant Gap
Dennis Lee, the Takeout, Food is Stupid: Unfortunately, I’m predicting that we’re going to lose another handful of restaurants through early summer, if not more than that. While I can feel the palpable relief with the vaccine rollout, I have the feeling the general public isn’t going to be seeing lasting effects until summer. That will be much too late for so many places. Think about all the places you love to eat at right now, and imagine what it’d be like if they were gone. If you can afford to go out to eat, absolutely go get takeout from those places. Now. Don’t wait.
Michael Gebert, Fooditor: Illinois Reaches Tier 3 of Deli Cup Shortage; Pritzker Orders All Takeout Shut Down
Governors Pritzker, Cuomo, and Newsom Seen Enjoying Takeout Dinner
Audarshia Townsend, WGN Morning News: More Unique Collaborations Help Keep Establishments Alive
It’s a Brave New World for Restaurants in 2021
Hospitality Culture Gets a Makeover
Overdue Accolades for Chicago’s Black Women Chefs
Mike Sula, Chicago Reader: New Trump-Branded Vaccine Causes Recipients to Lose All Sense of Taste, Morals
Titus Ruscitti, ChiBBQKing: Lots of spots will close, other spots will open in their place.
As 2020 threw the world a curveball, Eater Chicago this year has expanded its end-of-year panel to include other members of the city’s media.
Sarah Spain, ESPN: Chicagoans Flock to Patios After First “Warm-Up” of 2021
Chicago Party Aunt, @ChiPartyAunt: We’re putting gluten back in everything.
Natalie Moore, WBEZ: So many restaurants permanently closed and the ripple will be felt in 2021.