Gaijin is a cool, hip-vibe, casual, and modern Chicago West Loop restaurant showcasing familiar but yet re-invented flavors of okonomiyaki, yakisoba, korokke, and kakigori. The word "Gaijin" means a foreigner in Japanese and it is often used to call expats living in Japan. Chef Paul Virant marries his Midwestern New American flare to the Japanese street food staples by drawing his time living in Japan with his family immersing in the food culture to his interest and specialty in pickles.
We love authentic food but we also love how chefs from different cultural background can elevate flavors of other cultures through techniques and their own style of cooking. This restaurant concept and execution is truly exceptional, converting a person like me who doesn't normally like okonomiyaki or yakisoba to a lover. Gus has always been a lover of these dishes but no matter where I tried them on different occasions even in Japan or when I make them at home following someone else's recipe, it never hits the spot like Gaijin. As a bonus, Chef Paul Virant publishes his Osaka-style okonomiyaki recipe for you to try at home. Check this recipe out!
As much as we like home-cooked meals or fancy Michelin star restaurants, there are days when we just want no-frills and guaranteed deliciousness without the damage to our wallets. Embracing cultural diversity has its virtue and beyond the hot dogs and burgers, Chicago hosts a list of marvelous joints where you can sample worldly cuisine at an affordable price. We've included Chinese, Persian, and Mexican cuisine, just to name a few, so that your taste bud can have its own glorious moment of international enlightenment.
North Pond Restaurant Review
Awestruck and mind-blown, Bruce Sherman's North Pond is unbelievably creative and technical. The flavor combinations created from seasonal ingredients are truly reflective of the master craft and research taken to create such mind tingling dishes. The degustation experience left us in tears of joy as we were bombarded with the superbly executed dishes, one after another.
Somerset Review (Viceroy Hotel)
Classy, cozy, friendly, the All American Club diner in the heart of Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood brings back the Art Deco timeline with a sophisticated modern touch. As part of the BOKA group's portfolio of restaurants, the reputation placed the establishment with high expectations which were successfully met through out our dining experience, from the individual staff interactions to the execution of the re-envisioned classic dishes and the artistry in the cocktails. Join me, your host Jenny, as I explore one of the swankiest restaurant in Chicago.
The reign of Asian gourmet has arrived in the Chicago downtown neighborhood! For those who live in the downtown area and often shop for Asian food ingredients, H-Mart Supermarket opening in the West Loop area is as good as downtown living can get. H-Mart is not your everyday grocer, nor is it your mom and pop Asian grocer found in Chinatown or Argyle. It is a quality Korean supermarket chain that I am too well familiar of, coming from Texas where a large Asian population created demand for the grocer's expansion. Although not as large as the branches in Texas, the West Loop location boasts 1 bakery, 3 food court eateries, and a wide range of Asian ingredients to shop from, specifically Korean, Japanese, and Chinese. Read on to get the scoop on this hot-off-the-press supermarket before you make a visit.
711 W Jackson Blvd
Chicago, IL 60661
Hours: Daily 9AM -9PM
Two home cooks creating and tasting dishes from our lovely city of Chicago. Follow our world wide adventure as we discover ingredients, dishes, recipes, and the foodie way of life.
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