Perfect Chicago Restaurants for the Holidays

IMG_0875My favorite holidays are Thanksgiving and Christmas. I love mashed potatoes (to me, they’re a food group,) turkey, and all the other Thanksgiving traditional foods. However, I am aware that some of my good friends decided not to go home for the holidays since we were just home two weeks ago. For all of those in Chicago for the holidays that do not have a place to make a large turkey, I think the following restaurants are good substitutions. However, they are not the traditional places.

The first is one of my all time favorite spots. I have written about it before, but I tried something new. My usual dish at the Elephant and Castle is the stuffed Yorkshire pudding. It includes mashed potatoes, roast beef, and Yorkshire pudding, of course. They also have meatloaf, poutine, and burgers. This time, I tried the butter chicken poutine. If you like butter chicken and poutine (Canadians!), head over to Elephant and Castle and get this immediately.IMG_0814

If you like the idea of cooking your own meals but don’t like grocery shopping, or have no idea how to pick a good steak, then this other place is for you. Gyu-Kaku is a Japanese bbq restaurant off of Michigan Ave. You can order a variety of things that you cook yourself on a grill in the middle of the table. We got the Geisha Course which includes: edamame, fried gyoza dumplings, Gyu-Kaku salad, Miso soup, sukiyaki bibimbap, filet mignon, premium sirloin tare, bistro hanger steak miso, pork belly shio, chicken basil, assorted veggies, and s’mores. If you are not full by the end of this, then you can order even more meats, desserts, or vegetables.





Another place you could go to, which a few second years are obsessed with, is Velvet Taco. They have amazing tacos and a huge variety. They also have tater tots with a fried egg on top.  

The holidays are never a time to forget dessert, and Ghiradelli just opened a new location on the south end of Magnificent Mile. The brownies look to die for, but the ice cream with cookies is very tasty. Plus, this is a great place to grab some chocolate to bring back for Christmas.


Even if you went home for the holidays, celebrate with other Illinois College of Optometry students by going to one of these places eating to your heart’s desire.


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