Chicago may be known as the Second City, but the town is still a first-rate destination for some of the world’s biggest celebrities—many of whom live here, and many of whom are visiting for work, play, or a Midwest layover. Regardless of the reason, one thing is certain: When they do come, they come ready to eat—and Chicago’s A-list food scene awaits. From a hipster locale in Logan Square to a steakhouse staple in River North, here’s where to spot larger-than-life names.Read More
15 of Chicago’s Best Restaurants For Celebrity Sightings
Chicago diners could eat and drink alongside some famous people at these spots
Longman & Eagle
This corner restaurant, bar and inn has a knack for gathering Logan Square’s hippest crowds—and that clientele now includes some of the indie world’s most prized musicians, including Whitney, Iron & Wine, and Glen Hansard. Indie band Local Natives were the most recent rockers to dine here with a pre-show showdown of falafel Scotch eggs, barbecue salmon, and whiskey highballs.
Chicago’s three Michelin-starred darling has been drawing A-list names to Halsted Street ever since its 2005 opening, and chef Grant Achatz’s culinary wizardry only continues to delight. Just ask Justin Timberlake—who’s bound to respond in high pitch between hits from his sugar helium balloon.
Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse
Gibsons and adjoining Hugo’s Frog Bar are no strangers to celebrities—the Near North Side fixtures have seen everyone from Michael Jordan (a regular after every Bulls home game) and Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez. Most recently it was Adam Sandler, who dined there just this month with fellow comedian Rob Schneider. The already lively bar goes wild with appearances from Billy Joel, who’s been known to cozy up to the piano when he visits.
Le Colonial Chicago
This March saw the Oak Street reopening of this Gold Coast pillar, which brought with it the same tropical ambiance and French-Vietnamese fare of its Rush Street location and elevated it—to the third floor. The crowds are as chic as they always were, and famous faces continue to circle through, including mayor Rahm Emanuel, former White Sox general manager Kenny Williams, and comedian D.L. Hughley.
Tony Mantuano’s Mag Mile mainstay has been garnering notable diners for regional Italian fare and a serious wine program ever since its 1984 inception—and Joe Flamm’s recent Top Chef win only helps matters. In addition to being a favorite for the Obamas, the restaurant has garnered the attention of fellow chefs (Ferran Adria, Paul Bocuse), actors (Julia Roberts, Tom Hanks), and musicians (Elton John, Madonna).
Soulé has been pushing the boundaries of what defines soul food since 2017 in West Town. Chef Bridgette Harris has brought a touch of creole with standout fried catfish, lamb chops, and more to Chicago Avenue. NBA players like Bulls’s legend Scottie Pippen and the recently dealt Bobby Portis stop by for a taste of home (both are from Arkansas). TV personality Star Jones stopped by earlier in June. Ruth Carter, the woman who won an Oscar for designing the costumes in Black Panther has also dined there. Rappers like Lil Baby, Lil Durk, and more have also stopped in.
With locations in New York, Vegas, and LA, this River North Asian restaurant and nightclub had a scene-setting reputation that preceded it. As such, plan to spot several celebs in these parts, including Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes (seen this winter), Chance the Rapper (who celebrated his 26th birthday in April), and Jennifer Hudson (who hosted her own wrap party for her forthcoming film Cats in March).
Mason and Blind Dragon
This recently opened supper club is known for attracting a wide range of famous faces for upscale fare, such as petit filet (Taylor Lautner), ribeye (Emily Ratajkowski), and roasted broccolini and tagliatelle (Torrey DeVitto and Marina Squerciati). Downstairs, it’s all about dancing and karaoke at Blind Dragon, a favorite for Drake, who spent three back-to-back nights here sipping on “Two Birds, One Stone”—a cocktail made with his own spirit and named after his 2016 track.
Jamie Foxx, Ben Stiller, and Barbara Streisand are among the stars that descend upon this pan-Asian restaurant, where dim sum, sushi, and noodles are menu mainstays. Celebs may come for those flavors, but it’s the ambiance they stay for—sleek décor, lively tracks, and, of course, some of the city’s most fabulous people watching. Some visitors like the vibes so much, they’ll take them to-go—actor Johnny Galecki was such a fan of the Chicago concept, he partnered with Billy Dec for the restaurant’s Nashville outpost.
Ashlee Simpson, Evan Ross, and Chicago Fire’s Taylor Kinney are frequent fans of this modern-day steakhouse, a collaboration involving partners Bill and Giuliana Rancic. An over-the-top steak program of Japanese and Kobe beef and indulgent desserts (think 14K chocolate cake) are just a few of the reasons this River North destination continues to attract luminaries like Sophia Bush, Lady Gaga, and Taraji P. Henson.
Chicago Cut Steakhouse
Cubs pitcher Jon Lester dines at this River North steakhouse every week—and who could blame him? A menu of decadent steakhouse fixings (think bone-in ribeyes and “lobstercargot”) and a 600-plus wine list draw a number of other big names, too, such as the Blackhawks Duncan Keith, U2, Eddie Vedder, and Oprah, who always opts for the corner window booth.
Chance the Rapper, Jenna Dewan, Kathy Bates, and a host of professional athletes are just a few of the figures to frequent this 1950s Hollywood-inspired restaurant, where chef Johnny Besch presents a menu of heightened steakhouse fare (e.g. a shrimp cocktail with horseradish panna cotta or a 22-ounce bone-in ribeye). Expect to catch tastemakers seated at the restaurant’s center booths, the room’s most action-packed spots that rest beneath show-stopping chandeliers.
Well-heeled diners flock to this West Loop restaurant for a taste of acclaimed chef Andrew Zimmerman’s take on global flavors, which show up in plates like crispy Vietnamese crepes, tempura elotes, and black pepper pork with apple and mint. The latter two were must-orders for John Hamm and Sarah Ramos, two recent celebrity sightings — while Elizabeth Olsen was spotted at the bar this winter.
Girl & The Goat
All eyes were on Stephanie Izard when she took the Top Chef title and brought those talents to Randolph Street — and now, all eyes are on the illustrious clientele that frequent the space for Izard’s bold, globally-inspired dishes, from sockeye salmon poke and lamb skewers to duck tongues and goat empanadas.
THE LICKING CHICAGO
There are already long lines at the first Chicago outpost of DJ Khaled’s “Miami-style” soul food chain, which opened to much fanfare on social media, and many rappers are among the people who have dined there so far. Among them are Flo Rida, who was among the location’s first customers, and Dreezy and G Herbo were spotted at the new Austin hotspot. Khaled, however, has yet to make an in-person appearance.