In our new series, “The Grape Tastes Of America”, we explore some of America’s BEST restaurants and the innovative and delicious ways they are using grapes in their dishes.  We start our series, in one of the bright stars of the Midwest, Chicago, Illinois.

Chicago has long been a bastion of culinary excellence.   Yes, it’s known for its comfort food, but its also known for world-class cuisine!  And as a testament to this tasty food scene, there are no less than 15 Michelin restaurants there as of this year!   

Let’s take a look at how Chicago’s chefs are using our fave fruit, the delicious grape on their menus…


1723 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL

The bright star in Chicago is Alinea, one of only 14 US restaurants to hold three Michelin stars.  They have reinvented the dining experience in Chicago.  Always inventive, always creating something new and delicious, it should come as no surprise that Alinea tops our list. 

Here from their Instagram feed, you can see how they truly bring art to every plate and yes, this one features grapes. 



The Publican

837 W Fulton Market, Chicago, IL

Paul Kahan’s flagship location is a stalwart in taste in Chicago.  Known for its focus on seafood and pork, it’s also developing a tremendous reputation for its vegetable dishes.  Fans of great beers will find hops from all over the world.  Join them Monday – Friday from 3:30 – 5:30 for their $1 Oyster bar too!

On their current menu, we found that their kitchen artists were using grape in their dinner menu for their king salmon.  Also, we found this gorgeous salad using grapes that was a staff fave.  Clearly, grapes are a piece of their kitchen toolbox.



The Bellemore Chicago

2219, 564 W Randolph St, Chicago, IL 

This new restaurant has been a huge hit in Chicago, firstly by scoring with signing on Chef Jimmy Papadoulous;  a well known talent, now finally getting to cook with all his soul. And the dishes range from comfortable elegance to elaborate artistry.  And in such a short time, they have already found some faves of Chicago’s discerning taste buds…Hawaiian rolls, oyster pie, and their fried sweetbreads with pickled grapes! 




Fornetto Mei

105 E. Delaware Place, Chicago, Il

No trip to Chicago would be complete without PIZZA and Fornetto Mei has our vote for our favorite with their signature pizza…the sausage, goat cheese and grape pizza!  From their own site “The popular Italian sausage, red grapes and Laurel Chenel goat cheese pizza never fails, and our homemade spicy chili oil gives a fresh spin to the classic margherita pizza.” 



Taffy Grapes

Now going from fine dining to something definitely different, we bring you ‘taffy grapes.’  This taste has hit Chicago by storm for several years now!  What are taffy grapes?  Well, they are candy – or frosting-coated seedless green grapes with a nut topping and more, all designed to taste like a taffy apple.  And they are FLYING off the shelves!  What started on the Chicago’s south side, has now spread to all of The Windy City.   And one of the faves, is Nadia’s Gourmet Grapes!  Check out their stuff online, like these gourmet gorgeous grapes!


Have you been to Chicago?  What are your favorite restaurants?  Which of these sounds like one you want to visit right now?  We’d love to know your thoughts.  Join the conversation!


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