What makes a Chicago Steak

For those who love meat, there's nothing like eating a steak from the best cuts of beef. After dining on other courses, like Chinese, steak assumes an even greater prominence due to its taste and satisfaction factor, whether cooked rare, medium, or well done.

Chicago’s best steak houses are usually decorated with dark wood, sometimes even including chandeliers with the ambience; and, many have stood the test of time and have continued the tradition for 25 years or more: Gene & Georgetti’s; Gibson’s; Rosebud’s; and Chicago Chop House, to name a few, have been catering...

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What makes a Chicago Steak

For those who love meat, there's nothing like eating a steak from the best cuts of beef. After dining on other courses, like Chinese, steak assumes an even greater prominence due to its taste and satisfaction factor, whether cooked rare, medium, or well done.

Chicago’s best steak houses are usually decorated with dark wood, sometimes even including chandeliers with the ambience; and, many have stood the test of time and have continued the tradition for 25 years or more: Gene & Georgetti’s; Gibson’s; Rosebud’s; and Chicago Chop House, to name a few, have been catering to the taste of Chicago’s elite for a generation or more.

You may even be able to get quality seafood at some of these venerable steak houses, but the primary menu fare still consists of Chicago’s best steak. These institutions all feature extensive wine lists.

Beef used to create the quintessential Chicago steak are generally developed from grain fed cattle. Grain, which is high in protein, fattens up the cattle very quickly and makes their meat much more marbled, adding flavor and tenderness to the beef.

Most of Chicago’s best steak houses have their own aging facilities and showcase this area so diners can check out the quality and see the coloring and marbling these Chicago steaks have gained. Most Chicago steaks are dry-aged, which is slower but makes the beef more desirable in terms of quality. (Dry-aging makes the meat lose some water and concentrates the flavor; it can take weeks or months.)

Traditional sauces, such as steak sauce, mustard and garlic continue to be used, but inroads are being made for more “healthful” flavoring using simply salt and pepper to enhance the natural flavor. The highest level of appreciation for quality of a Chicago steak can be obtained by not using any sauce claim many of the knowledgeable owners and chefs at these Chicago steakhouses, but tradition often wins out.

The best Chicago steak houses typically offer excellent desserts as well, so you should save some room for the dessert. Often, the cheesecake rivals if not surpasses the best to be found at a café or other type fine dining establishment.

If you can’t afford to try one of the Chicago steaks at one of the recommended steak house, think about trying their beef burger at lunch or for dinner. The ground beef usually comes from the same producer as the steak and the quality is similar.

Chicago Best Steaks uses a number of measures to define the restaurant that offer the best steaks. First, the steak house must feature USDA Prime Beef on its menu; the steak house must also offer world-class service; and, stock an extensive supply of wines and spirits, in keeping with the enjoyment and atmosphere that are part and parcel of a great steak house.

Each of the steakhouse included on this site and in our guide is highly regarded by local and national media outlets such as Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times DiRoNA, Wine Spectator and Zagat. So, you as a diner, will know that the quality of the meal and the ambiance of the restaurant will meet your strictest requirements and afford you a relaxing, enjoyable meal.

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