Where to dine during Chicago Theater Week, February 16-26

the dearborn

Anchoring the southeast corner of Dearborn and Randolph streets, The Dearborn is an American urban tavern by sisters and owners Amy Lawless and Clodagh Lawless. They combine 40 years of hospitality experience, both here in Chicago and in their native Ireland. Inspiration for the kitchen begins with traditional American taverns, and from there, Executive Chef Aaron Cuschieri harnesses seasonal ingredients, farmers markets, and contemporary culinary techniques to create dishes that lean toward the Midwest as well as as those with a more global influence. Reservations can be made on OpenTable.


At Proxi, Chef Andrew Zimmerman combines two of his great loves: traveling and cooking. His menu wanders through Asia, India, Mexico and beyond. Just down the street from downtown Chicago theaters, diners can choose bites and sips for half price. Available in the bar, lounge and patio, diners can select half price appetizers such as Tempura Elotes and Smoked Carrot Dip to wash down with $9.00 glasses of wine and select cocktails. Available Tuesday through Friday from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

by petterino

Petterino’s has been in the Loop for over 20 years. It’s an option for a pre-theater dinner with a selection of Italian-American fare like burrata ravioli or salmon arrabbiata. There are also happy hour specials available at the bar Monday through Thursday, with $7 house wines and $6 bartender-selected cocktails and draft beers. Petterino’s offers after-theater drinks: grab a Petterino’s 75, Espresso Martini or Italian Old Fashioned. Reservations can be made on OpenTable.

grill at 21

Grill on 21 is located on the 21st floor of the Hotel LaSalle. Grill on 21 is a modern interpretation of the classic American steakhouse, offering dishes ranging from lobster Thermidor and steak with fries to vegetarian carrot Wellington and house-fried cauliflower. Grill on 21 is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, for a bite to eat or a drink during the day or night. Reservations can be made on OpenTable.


Named for an Argentine tango movement, Boleo brings the flavors and rhythms of South America to a rooftop in the Loop. Take the elevator to the top of The Kimpton Gray Hotel for a pre-theater dinner under the city lights. Boleo offers a menu of ceviches, anticuchos and other small plates to snack on. Boleo’s drinks menu also offers cocktails. Boleo is open for dinner Wednesday through Saturday from 5 to 10 pm Reservations can be made on OpenTable.

Bar Mar de José Andrés

Located in Chicago’s Bank of America Tower, Bar Mar offers versions of seafood classics. For the pre-theater crowd, Bar Mar has just introduced a new $75 per person pre-theater menu that includes a selection of signature appetizers, small bites, a selection of entrees and desserts. Dishes include: Hamachi Cone–brick dough, smoked Hamachi, yuzo and sesame mayonnaise, radish, Pan Con Boquerones–Vinegar-cured Spanish white anchovies, pan con tomato, Croquetas de Pollo–Béchamel chicken fritters, and Walleye Pike with mojo picón and grilled gem lettuce. Reservations available through their website.


This cocktail bar boasts views of the skyline and the Chicago River from its urban rooftop location. The bar offers craft cocktails, international wines, and a beer list filled with draft and packaged beers from breweries in and around Chicago. Indoor and outdoor seating areas at Raised are open year-round, as the outdoor rooftop terrace has fire pits, heaters, and outdoor sofas.