The “L” has been a Chicago staple since the early 1900s – giving Chicagoans easy access to just about every inch of the city with the swipe of a card. On a 15 degree day in January, shivering through the snow to pick up lunch or grab a cocktail sounds like a LOT of work. Not looking to freeze your butt off this winter? Us either. Take advantage of the ol’ public transit and get to where you’re going for $2.50 (peace out expensive rideshare services). Consider one of these ten restaurants that are quite literally steps from the CTA.
This list has a little bit of everything: local coffee shops, vibrant flavors for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and a few iconic Chicago staples nestled among some lesser known favorites. We’ve got every train color covered, so hop on the closest line near you and pay one of these spots a visit!
- First Sip Cafe – Argyle Red Line (Uptown)
2. Al’s Under the L – California Green Line (East Garfield Park) – “Wow I’m stuffed. Great conversation with real people and awesome food. For real, find me a better steak burger than Al’s! This place is great for a quick greasy bite.” – Yelper James V.
3. Piccolo Sogno – Grand Blue Line (River West)
4. Noon O Kabab – Kedzie Brown Line (Albany Park) – “I LOVE this place. Anytime I’m in Chicago. My favs are the aush soup, botani, and koobideh. Both the dill rice and regular are fantastic. The kebab melts in your mouth.“– Elsa E.
5. Bar Takito – Morgan Green line (West Loop)
6. Glenn’s Diner – Montrose Brown Line (Ravenswood)
7. Blue Line Lounge & Grill – Damen Blue Line (Wicker Park) – If you frequent the Blue Line, it’s time to drop into the Blue Line Lounge & Grill. Just steps from the Damen stop, this neighborhood treasure takes you back to the 40s with its swanky jazz music, neon lights, and Wednesday night martini special.
8. Demera Ethiopian Restaurant – Lawrence Red Line (Uptown)
9. 5 Rabanitos Restaurante & Taqueria – 18th Pink Line (Pilsen)
10. Big Boss Spicy Fried Chicken – Halsted Orange Line (Bridgeport)