Think Steak For A Romantic Valentine’s Day
Audarshia Townsend & David Lissner
The allure of a roaring fireplace. Wine lists handpicked by some of the best sommeliers in the biz. And sweet and savory bites meant for sharing under soft, intimate lights. While the majority of Chicago steakhouses cater to big business types, quite a few offer a romantic vibe with all the bells and whistles. Sure, you can order up a steak at any of the usual romantic spots around town (e.g. Everest, Le Colonial, North Pond), but why not just get one from a place that does it best? Here are the Top 10 Most Romantic Steakhouses in Chicago.
Keefer’sRestaurant: Complete with a romantic fireplace this Chicago, River North Steakhouse comes with top grade chef-mastered Steaks. All USDA prime and are classic cuts: filet mignon, Kansas City strip, New York strip, Delmonico ribeye, bone-in ribeye and Porterhouse. Each is served with a choice of sauces like béarnaise, bordelaise and peppercorn. But this steakhouse come with master chef John Hogan. The Kaffe side is soft and elegant with a view of kinzie St.
III Forks. You’ll feel like you’ve been whisked away from the hectic downtown scene—even though this restaurant is only a few blocks away from the Loop. It’s in a quiet residential area and offers sweeping views of skyscrapers. The 32-ounce Tomahawk ribeye is a big seller as well as non-meat dishes such as Chilean sea bass and cold water rock lobster tail. The wine list is massive—and can be intimating—but a knowledgeable wine staff will help you find what you want.
Bavette’s Bar & Boeuf. The French-themed steakhouse was an instant success when it opened in River North in 2012. There are so many dark and romantic corners to hide out in with a sig other that you’ll want to put this at the top of your list. Set the pace for the night with the starter plateau de fruits de mer, a seafood tower lined with fresh lobster, shrimp, oysters and more. Then move on to the main event: a dry-aged ribeye, shortrib Stroganoff or double-bone Berkshire pork chop. The cocktail-focused Bavette’s embraces classic sparkling wine elixirs such as the French 75 and Kir Royale.
Chicago Cut. Located right off the Chicago River, Chicago Cut offers fantastic patio seating when it’s warm outside. When the weather’s not so favorable, its classic steakhouse atmosphere is ideal for the traditional couple. Though most tables are occupied by business types, the dining room still manages to feel warm and inviting with hardwood accents throughout the space. The restaurant specializes in USDA prime beef dry-aged, and cuts range from bone-in ribeye to Porterhouse. There are also center-barrel cuts for filet mignon (six ounces to 10 ounces) as well as double cuts for Châteaubriand, Porterhouse and bone-in ribeye. Chicago Cut’s impressive global wine list is one of the most underrated in town.
Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House. Thinking about a lavish Oak Street shopping spree at the likes of Christian Louboutin, Tom Ford, Jimmy Choo or Harry Winston? A great way to celebrate your new purchases is by dining at this luxurious steakhouse in the center of the action. Start off with strong martinis in the scene-y lounge, then head to the dining room for an over-the-top experience of over-sized steaks and accompaniments certain to wow your date.
Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse. An upscale chain most popular in Texas, Fleming’s appeals to the masses with familiar offerings and daily deals. While it may not be as trendy as some of the other steakhouse offerings around town, the restaurant delivers a solid experience when you’re in need of a special night out. Cut err on the classic side, ranging from petit filet mignon to dry aged New York strip, and 100 wines by the glass have been hand selected by the national wine director. For those at a loss when it comes to vino, she’s conveniently categorized them by taste, including “bubbly & festive,” “smooth & fruit forward” and “velvety and full bodied.”
Gene & Georgetti. This Italian-focused steakhouse is as old school as it gets, which means you’re in good hands if you’re celebrating a special occasion. Though you’ll feel like you took a step back in time, you’ll be surrounded by many like-minded individuals with romance as a theme. You’ll find a good number of prime steaks and classic Italian dishes made with portions generous enough to share. All steaks and chops are broiled (think lamb chops, t-bone steaks and filet mignon; eggplant parmigiana, chicken Vesuvio and lobster alla Diavolo are popular with non-steak diners. A well-curated wine program emphasized California and Italian vino.
Mastro’s. A late-night rendezvous at the piano bar is the perfect way to cap off a special evening at this ritzy steak spot attracting the city’s well heeled. Mastro’s is the place you take a date when you want to impress; after all, its roots are based in the very glamorous Orange County, Calif. Nevertheless, the menu consists of 16 different chops and steaks, ranging from an eight-ounce petite filet to a 48-ounce double cut Porterhouse. You’ll also find an ample selection of seafood dishes; choose from such best-sellers as Chilean sea bass, grilled swordfish or live Maine lobster.
RL. Instead of noshing in the main dining room, arrange to have your dinner in the luxe lounge—directly in front of the cozy fireplace. Those are the sweetest seats inside this venerable steakhouse, which specializes in classic preparations of your favorite cuts. Perennial favorites include steak Diane (prime sirloin with veal reduction), Dover sole with Mayer lemon butter sauce and the prime Angus bone-in ribeye.
Tavern on Rush. While the first floor remains one of the busiest sports bars in the city, Tavern on Rush’s upper level serves as a more reserved destination for fine dining. It’s a hushed setting, with white tablecloths, a doting waitstaff and view overlooking the bustling Rush Street Chicago action. USDA steaks are charcoal grilled to order; ranging from an eight ounce filet mignon to a 24-ounce Porterhouse. Additional—and exceptional—steak choices include a 32-ounce Tomahawk Wagyu ribeye steak and 48-ounce Porterhouse. Many dishes are prepared tableside, including Caesar salad, steaks and fish. Servers also put the finishing touches of your martini at your table.