Not that we need another reason to celebrate in Chicago, but with Oktoberfest in full swing thanks to local beers and German classics, the Windy City is ready to go! Not familiar with German cuisine? There are still plenty of your favorite restaurants putting their own spin on traditional dishes like sausage and sauerkraut, and since our weather is about to feel much more fall-ish, this is the perfect time to find your new favorite comfort food!
For the last few warm days of the season, LYFE Kitchen, has lighter options like their famous Pizzadillawich or Art’s Unfried Chicken (delicious and good for you!). But for Oktoberfest, you can pair these favorites with a craft beer tasting from local microbrews. The tasting menu includes: Boulevard Tank 7 (light to medium bodied beer, Revolution Bottom Up Wit (Belgian-style wheat beer), Hopothesis IPA, and Comfortably Blonde Tighthead, which is lighter than the usual pale ale.
Bohemian House just opened this summer, but this River North restaurant is the perfect fall spot to sit and enjoy a warm meal like sweet & sour red cabbage or a salad of watercress & shaved raw turnips dressed with a beer vinaigrette. The interior is upscale Bohemian with a warm and welcoming interior and their special of Knackwurst in a Blanket is the dish to grab this month. Made in-house by chef Jimmy Papadopoulos, it’s wrapped in a puff pastry then baked and seasoned with paprika, garlic, coriander, nutmeg, black pepper & salt. Yum!
For other Eastern European classics, Little Bucharest is a great place to stop for German flavors, as well as classic dishes for the surrounding countries! Think roasted beet carpaccio, the restaurant’s signature goulash, or clatite, which are warm crepes with chocolate, strawberry or apricot sauce. But to stay true to the Oktoberfest spirit, they have mititei, charbroiled sausages, beef and pork, plus garlic, served with greens and crispy polenta (above).
Other specials to look out for are:
Troquet in River North, a usual Chicago brunch favorite, is now going to be our dinner go-to thanks to their house marinated Sauerbraten (a German pot roast) with pickled red cabbage on a pretzel bun served with frites. A total German classic with their tasty flair.
A bratwurst with sauerkraut and a to die for potato puree at Brasserie by LM (above) is a great choice for the Loop crowd to relax with after a long day’s work this week. Pair it with one of their local Chicago IPA’s for a little taste of home!
Chicago Brauhaus has been a Chicago staple in the German-food scene for over forty years, and there is no more traditional and authentic place to celebrate Oktoberfest all month long! Plus, there’s live German music for you to really get in the spirit!