Chicago Restaurant Week 2019: Best international cooking, reservation recommendations

BySara Tenenbaum WLS logo
Sunday, January 27, 2019
From left to right: Ixcateco Grill, Tanta, Chicago Curry House, HaiSous

CHICAGO (WLS) -- With nearly 400 restaurants participating in Chicago Restaurant Week this year, including over 100 first-timers and 45 choices in the suburbs, there are plenty of ways for you to take advantage. One of them is experiencing some of the best international cooking in the city.

These five restaurants offer exquisite food, new and exciting flavors, and the opportunity to indulge in cuisines you perhaps have not considered before.

Chicago Curry House - Indian and Nepali cuisine

899 S. Plymouth Court


Website | Pre Fixe Menu

Restaurant Week: Lunch ($24) and Dinner ($48)

Plenty of choices here on both menus, including samosas, breads, masalas, tandooris and traditional desserts. There are options for vegetarians and meat eaters alike, all flavorful and filling. It's worth visiting for either meal but all things considered, it's probably a better deal at lunch time.

Demera - Ethiopian cuisine

4801 N. Broadway Street


Website | Pre Fixe Menu

Restaurant Week: Lunch ($24) and Dinner ($48)

Ethiopian food can feel difficult to approach what with the many, many dishes to choose from and its reputation for being spicy, but Demera has a nice selection of shareable dishes with an emphasis on vegetarian items. Enjoy the cuisine's signature thick stews (spicy and mild options are both on offer) with spongy, sour injera bread - and there's a gluten-free injera substitution available for an extra $2.50. A particularly great reservation if you're going to see something at the Green Mill or Aragon.

HaiSous - Vietnamese cuisine

1800 S. Carpenter Street


Website | Pre Fixe Menu

Restaurant Week: Brunch ($24) and Dinner ($48)

Tucked among the Mexican restaurants in Pilsen, Thai Dang - one of the city's most talented chefs - and his homage to his native Vietnam is among the city's best restaurants, period. Starters include pork shoulder with crushed peanuts or chopped clams with Vietnamese basil, and the braised chicken or new Restaurant Week exclusive Tom Chien Muoi Tieu (salt and peppers shrimp) are ABC7's Steve Dolinsky's picks for main courses. HaiSous is also one of the Restaurant Week participants offering a deal for brunch. You can add beverage pairings to either pre fixe menu - $35 per person for dinner and $15 per person for brunch.

Ixcateco Grill - Mexican cuisine

3402 W. Montrose Avenue


Website | Pre Fixe Menu

Restaurant Week: Dinner ($36)

The restaurant week menu has fewer options than other places, but this BYO spot, at $36, is a steal. Dolinsky recommends starting with sopes placeros, then moving on to the shrimp mole. The New York strip steak with black mole looks pretty tempting, too.

Tanta - Peruvian cuisine

118 W. Grand Avenue


Website | Pre Fixe Menu

Restaurant Week: Lunch ($24) and Dinner ($48)

A Peruvian import from Lima, Tanta is known for serving some of the city's best ceviche. Look beyond that, though, to their Chinese-influenced rice dishes and Peruvian sandwiches, not to mention the intriguing cheesecake flavored with chicha morada (purple corn and pineapple). Vegetarian options are available on both menus, and a $10 wine by the glass special is available for both meals.