Evanston Hot Spots

Before or after the game, Evanston has amazing new culinary options as well as a few watering holes not to be missed. In town for Northwestern University graduation weekend? Explore our guide to Evanston.

If you’re a fan of both fabulous food and football, then the fun really begins when the 4th quarter ends at Ryan Field. After you’ve worked up a championship-sized appetite cheering on the Wildcats, you’re just a few mouth-watering minutes away from the some of the newest restaurants and bars in Chicagoland in Northwestern’s home of Evanston. Seriously folks, you won’t know which delicious direction to go in first. Après-Game choices range from sophisticated and spicy to Mom’s comfort food, so you need to make an extra point to eat in Evanston early and often!

Restaurants


Whiskey Thief Tavern

616 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 859-2342

The perfect balance of class, elegance, convenience and comfort. From the cozy “library,” where you can sip small batch spirits, to the convenient bar setup, where you can grab a quick bite, to the quiet booths tucked inside large open barrels, where you can settle in for an elegant meal complete with upscale bar fare.


Bangers and Lace

810 Grove St., Evanston, IL
(847) 905-0854

A bar/restaurant with the feel of a Midwestern lodge. Offering 32 draft beers from around the world and an extensive bottle selection. Why the name? “Bangers” is the British term for sausage, & “lace” stands for Brussels lace, the intricate veil of beer foam that clings to the side of the glass, indicating a well-crafted beer and a clean glass.


Bluestone

1932 Central St., Evanston, IL
(847) 424-0420

When you need a taste of comfort that reminds you of Mom’s home cooking, head over to Bluestone! You’ll feel right at home next to the crackling fire with Baked MAC & Cheese, BBQ Meatloaf or Chicken Scaloppini. Elbows off the table for some Country Chicken Pot Pie, Grown-Up Grilled Cheese or a Steak & Chipotle Quesadilla with loaded tots.


Panino's Pizzeria

1968 Dempster St., Evanston, IL
(847) 475-6200

A full-service restaurant offering traditional and contemporary Italian dishes. While creating their Artisan Style Pizza, Panino’s adheres to the standards of old school pizzerias and the art and craft of great pizzaiolis. Proud member of the USA Pizza Team. Gluten-free options also available.


Oceanique

505 Main St., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-3435

Located on Chicago's North Shore, Chef Mark Grosz offers a seamless fusion of traditional French Cuisine and Modern American fare with just a dash of Japanese influence. Boasting an impressive wine list, Oceanique has garnered the Wine Spectators "Best of Award of Excellence" with consistent recognition from the prestigious Zagat guide as Chicagoland's best seafood.


Peckish Pig

623 Howard St., Evanston, IL
(847) 491-6778

Seasonal suds, guest beers, craft cocktails and gastropub food (house-smoked and fried ham hocks with salted-caramel drizzle, tuna wellington, and much, much more including vegetarian options) are on offer at this relaxed, brewpub. The loft-like open space is done in exposed brick and wood, with beamed ceilings and in the warmer months, an outdoor patio allows you do drink and dine under the stars.


Lucky Platter

514 Main St., Evanston, IL
(847) 869-4064

Steps from the Main Street train stations, this long time Evanston favorite keeps guests guessing with their off-beat vibe serving “funkalicious” creations at breakfast, lunch and dinner. All creations are made from scratch daily, including their famous Apricot Cheese Flakies, Chicken Pot Pie, Tandoori Chicken Salad and Butterscotch Pudding! Serving wine, beer and spirits.


La Principal

700 Main St., Evanston, IL
(224) 307-2444

Whether you desire a quick cup of coffee and churro in the morning, a new lunch spot, a unique watering hole to watch the game, or have your main taco fix, La Principal, is ready for you. Contemporary Mexican street food served in chic, relaxed digs with a bar and a walk-up coffee window.


The Barn

1016 Church St., Evanston, IL
(847) 868-8041

The Barn is a meat-centric hideaway, tucked away down an alley in the heart of Evanston. Sourcing the finest quality ingredients, meats and Prime Heritage Angus, proprietor Amy Morton’s newest restaurant is lively and smart with old school table-side service.


Blind Faith Cafe

525 Dempster St., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-6875

For over 30 years, guests have enjoyed the innovative vegetarian food at this premier certified green restaurant. Curried chopped salad, black bean ginger tofu, and the ever popular macrobiotic plate exemplify their dedication to offering beautifully prepared natural. Bakery items included sugar free, vegan and gluten free options. Superb selection of beer and wine.


Curt's Cafe

2922 Central St., Evanston, IL
(847) 868-8385

As unique as it is delicious, Curt’s Café invites you to dine with purpose while enjoying great food. Curt’s is a non-profit organization that provides food service and life skills training for at-risk youth in Evanston. Curt’s pours their heart and soul into their famous coffee drinks, as well as their fresh, flavorful breakfast treats, sandwiches and salads plus their comfy couches will make you feel right at home.


Celtic Knot Public House

626 Church St., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-1679

A very welcoming Irish Pub and Restaurant in the heart of Downtown Evanston. Classic pub food, delicious entrees, salads and desserts. Live music every Saturday, Sunday and Monday and Storytelling every month. No cover charge. Afternoon tea is served on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Open for lunch, brunch, dinner and late night. A great pint of Guinness is always poured here.


Lou Malnati's Evanston

1850 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-5400

Home of the best pizza in Chicago. Our signature Chicago-style deep dish pizza is made using a recipe that has been handed down through generations. Offering dine in, carryout, delivery and catering.


Pete Miller's Seafood & Prime Steak Evanston

1557 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-0399

A North Shore go-to restaurant for fine dining and entertainment. Offering the freshest seafood, prime aged steaks, high end cocktails, wines, and scotches accompanied by live jazz, seven nights a week. Whether you are seeking an intimate dinner for two or looking for a place to host your next special event or corporate dinner, you will find the warm and inviting ambiance of Pete Miller's the perfect place for all your dining needs.


The Hoosier Mama Pie Company

749 Chicago Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 868-8863

A comforting slice of Americana awaits you at one of Evanston’s sunniest spots, The Hoosier Mama Pie Co. & Dollop Coffee & Tea Co. With a head-spinning variety of freshly baked-before-your-eyes pies, choose your favorite and pair it with a steaming mug of espresso. Breakfast lovers can cozy up to the counter for buttermilk biscuits or stop by for lunch or dinner for savory pie plates, sandwiches, and salads.


Hearth Restaurant

The Homestead Inn, Evanston, IL
(847) 570-8400

A warmly rustic restaurant favoring sustainability, classic pairings, and simple ingredients from around the world. An inviting option for casual gatherings and libations with friends. With five spaces to suit your needs, Hearth provides the perfect venue to share time, enjoy ambiance, and delight in delicious cuisine and good company.


La Cocinita Restaurant

1625 Chicago Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 332-1625

Located in downtown Evanston, La Cocinita serves Venezuelan street food, as well as beer, wine and cocktails such as jalapeno-cucumber margaritas. Specialties include homemade arepas (Venezuelan cornmeal patties) and cachapas for brunch (sweet corn pancakes). The husband-wife proprietors also operate a food truck for local catering and special events.


Found Kitchen and Social House

1631 Chicago Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 868-8945

Rustic new American menu showcases the best local produce and ingredients of each season. With a refreshing spotlight on vegetables and grains alongside select cuts of meat, Chef Pederson reflects the new American palate in the dishes in a creative atmosphere inspired by 1920’s Bohemian Paris and icons of the Beat Generation. Fresh juices. Full bar.


Taco Diablo

1029 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 869-4343

An independent, locally owned restaurant. Giving a respectful nod to Mexican cuisine that's rooted in authentic Mexican cooking techniques. What you will find is hand crafted product, traditional moles, fresh made salsas, served in a lively and casual atmosphere by friendly people. Beverages celebrate Mexico's production of high quality tequila and mezcals. We are proud to be members of a community that recognizes and supports local small business. Buen Provecho!


Prairie Moon

1502 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-8328

Interesting twists on American fare such as the key lime margarita chicken tacos made with Tequila-chili grilled marinated chicken breast, and grilled salmon with horseradish mashed potatoes, green apple salsa, and cider glaze. A large selection of small batch and craft beers, spirits and wines. Lovely outdoor patio. Friendly front bar.


Five & Dime

1026 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 869-4343

Evanston’s new rooftop restaurant and bar allows gorgeous sunset views above the street hubbub. Comfy couches, tables for larger groups and an indoor and outdoor bar give you plenty of options to enjoy their unique twist on creative bar food. Great meeting spot to enjoy dinner or some libations. Bored? Play Ping Pong in the game room or try one of the vintage pinball machines.


NaKorn Kitchen

1622 Orrington Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 733-8424

A full service Thai restaurant specializing in fresh, bold flavors of Thai cuisine with a causal, yet exceptional dining experience. NaKorn chefs have worked to perfect old-Thai recipes with a modern presentation, for unique dishes layered with flavor while encouraging the traditional practice of family-style dining. The restaurant and full-service bar provide a nostalgic glimpse of the past reminiscent of 1970's Thai shophouses in a stylish yet warm and cozy vibe.


Edzo's Burger Shop

1571 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-3396

A homage to the Chicago hot dog stand. Check out the griddled burgers which are smashed thin and done up crispy on the grill or thicker, juicier char burgers; order a Classic Chicago hot dog, Maxwell Polish or a Sheboygan Brat. Fresh-cut fries in many tempting varieties including: cheese, garlic, and loaded up with cheese, bacon, sour cream and green onion. Decadent hand-dipped milk shakes too.


Tommy Nevin's Pub

1450 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 869-0450

An authentic Irish/American pub with full service dining, bar and game room. Plus a live music venue with pool, darts and TVs.


Foodstuffs

2106 Central St., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-7704

Specializing in providing customers with uncompromised top quality prepared foods including homemade appetizers, soups, entrees, salads, breads and pastries. Customers can also find fine pates, cheeses, fresh seafood, meats and so much more!


Chef's Station

915 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 570-9821

Recognized for its impeccable cuisine, extensive wine list, quality service and cozy, comfortable ambiance, Chef's Station remains a North Shore favorite. In busy downtown Evanston, Chef Elio Romero offers Contemporary American Cuisine and seasonal menus that inspire a variety of palates. Soufflés ,tasting menus and patio dining are available.


University Plaza Cafe

1501 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 491-6400

The University Plaza Cafe "UPC" is a signature restaurant serving breakfast and dinner. The menu boasts gourmet comfort food, selected for the guest to experience the "home away from home" menu.


Cupitol Coffee & Eatery

810 Grove St., Evanston, IL
(847) 868-8078

A casual, all-day lounge that brings together the best elements of a restaurant, a bakery, a café and an exclusive bar. European-style counter service offers guests unique espresso drinks, pastries, freshly squeezed juices, as well as everything you would desire from breakfast to dinner.


Aloha Poke Co.

630 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(224) 999-7298

Serves build-your-own style poke bowls. The menu combines sushi-grade tuna and salmon, as well as tofu, into customizable bowls with rice or mixed greens base and toppings, along with a collection of sauces.


Trattoria DOC

706 Main St., Evanston, IL
(847) 475-1111

Italian favorites plus wood-fired pizzas are served up in an open, bright space situated on Main Street in Evanston, a tree-lined street walking distance to the Metra and CTA trains stop and home to quaint boutiques and restaurants. D.O.C. stands for the Denominazione di Origine Controllata, a wine appellation which requires that a product be produced following strict guidelines to ensure quality. Following in this tradition, this Evanston favorite offers seasonal menus of the highest standards overseen by sisters Lucia and Giuliana Moazzocchetti.


Koi Fine Asian Cuisine & Lounge

624 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 866-6969

Located right in the heart of Evanston’s charming restaurant row, Koi brings bold flavors of eight different regions of authentic Chinese cuisine and fresh sushi to every dining experience. Koi offers a modern relaxing atmosphere, perfect for a night out with friends, dinner for two or private parties. Come and see us and enjoy the weekly specials at bar after work. Be creative, live long, be happy and follow your own path.


Boltwood

804 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 859-2880

Brian Huston, Chef de Cuisine of The Publican created Boltwood where the farmers, the market and the seasons dictate the food. A combination of small and large plates makes it easy for guests to sample the plentiful offerings. The menu changes daily and the beer, wine and cocktail lists are curated each season.


Terra & Vine

1701 Maple Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 563-4333

The latest restaurant from Master Sommelier and restaurateur Alpana Singh, offers casual, rustic Mediterranean fare with an Italian emphasis, showcasing the region’s bright, bold flavors and seasonal ingredients. Led by Executive Chef Carlos DeLeon, the menu features a variety of sides, shareable dishes and large plates, including ciabatta spreads, house-made pastas, pizzas and wood-fired entrees.


The Cellar at the Stained Glass

820 Clark St., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-8678

Sibling to the established and more expensive Stained Glass Bistro around the corner, this quaint restaurant focuses on a wide selection of beers and a full bar. Small plates are fun to share and feature regional specialties such as blue cheese beignets with roasted mushrooms and Port wine syrup; and all American baked three cheese macaroni with cheddar, asiago, and provolone.


Lulu's

1029 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 869-4343

The biggest bowls of fresh Asian noodles, crispy-crunchy ginger salads and homemade dumplings all washed down with cold beer or tasty tropical cocktails topped with little paper umbrellas. Confucius says, ‘Eat Well, Have Fun, Be Happy!’


Table to Stix Ramen

1007 Davis St., Evanston, IL
(847) 859-6847

Showcasing the simple things with great food, service, and a cozy atmosphere, Table to Stix Ramen brings all of these important elements to the table with some good old-fashioned ramen. Enjoy delicious noodle bowls featuring Japanese & Korean ingredients and small plates at this intimate Evanston hot spot.


Coast Sushi & Sashimi

2545 Prairie Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-2221

Steps from the Central Street Metra Station and Northwestern University’s Ryan Field, this second location of a Chicago favorite brings fresh sushi to Evanston. Robata-grilled menu items include tofu, pork shoulder and shishito peppers. The regular sushi menu is supplemented with signature specialty rolls. Unrivaled ramen is a menu secret. Great ambiance tucked in on a quaint side street.


La Macchina Cafe

1620 Orrington Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 425-1080

Restaurant and wine bar offering a true taste of Italy in a comfortable atmosphere utilizing only the freshest ingredients in a rustic, motorcycle-themed setting. Serving brunch, lunch and dinner with weekly specials.


e Town Bistro

Hilton Orrington/Evanston, Evanston, IL
(847) 866-8700

This comfortable and inviting hotspot features inventive American fare and traditional favorites. The ample bar and wooden bistro interior provides a warm atmosphere a for meeting. Daily Breakfast Buffet with an exquisite Omelet Station. Lunch and dinner feature freshly made salads, sandwiches and sizzling entrees. Fully stocked bar with 10 beers on tap.


Farmhouse Evanston

703 Church St., Evanston, IL
(847) 492-9700

A Midwestern craft tavern specializing in local food and drink. All burgers, condiments and sodas are made from scratch. More than 28 craft beers on tap ensure you will find something special. Also serving Michigan wines on tap. Over 85% of the restaurant interior was built with salvaged materials and reclaimed pieces from many famous Chicago bars and restaurants.


Bagel Art

615 Dempster St., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-8700

A local, family-owned bagel shop and deli located in the lively Chicago/Dempster shopping area of Evanston. Offering the freshest bagels in town, organic cream cheese spreads, flavored and whipped on-site. Sandwiches made to order, homemade vegetarian soups are always delicious and the salad bar is always fresh! Free WIFI, free library and a copy of the New York Times for your reading pleasure.


Libations


Smylie Brothers Brewing Co.

1615 Oak Ave., Evanston, IL
(224) 999-7320

A craft brewery and smokehouse born out of years of Mike Smylie's dedication to BBQ and brewing. Lean back with some cold, craft brewed beer and lean forward over great pizza and mouthwatering BBQ. When you step through the door, take in the wide-open dining room, smell the brisket in the smoker, and hear the whoosh of pouring brew.


Few Spirits

918 Chicago Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 920-8628

Evanston's first and only distillery, Few Spirits has been crafting award winning whiskeys and gins since 2011. Tours include a review of Evanston's history of being a dry city, spirit production and full tasting.


World of Beer

1601 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
(847) 328-3688

The hot spot where you can find the best selection of local and international beer and a tasty menu of tavern fare. Join us for a great experience of beer, food and fun!


Temperance Beer

2000 Dempster St., Evanston, IL
(847) 864-1000

It’s taken almost one hundred years, but Evanston can once again call itself home to a Temperance movement. But this time there’s beer. Visit the Tap Room, a place to enjoy beer at its freshest. Most beers available in flights of 4 ounce tasters, half pints, and pints. Though not a brewpub, Temperence offers food from a variety of specialty purveyors.


Ward Eight

629 W. Howard St., Evanston, IL
(847) 420-7353

An exceptional neighborhood cocktail bar. Creative craft cocktails made by inventive, unpretentious mixologists, unique wines and local beers accentuate a menu of small plates. Dimly lit interior with tables and plenty of seats at that bar. A friendly, lively gathering place for locals and inviting to visitors.