International travel is back, but you don’t need a passport for your tastebuds to travel around the world. Thanks to a plethora of international restaurants in Rogers Park and the Gold Coast, you can enjoy global cuisine without leaving the neighborhood. Here are a few local establishments that give you a sumptuous taste of life abroad.
Badou Senegalese Cuisine (Senegal) – 2049 W Howard St.
Senegalese cuisine blends North African, French, and Portuguese influences, and many of the staple ingredients are familiar to American palettes, including rice, sweet potatoes, and lentils. While the restaurant features traditional Senegalese fish and meat dishes, it also offers an ample vegetarian/vegan menu and some soul-inspired meals like the collard greens, black-eyed peas, and smoked turkey combo in “Badou Soul Food Delight.”
El Sabor Poblano (Mexico) – 7027 N Clark St
This family-run restaurant describes itself as “authentic food and indigenous spices from Puebla, Mexico.” It features the culinary legacy of its matriarch Maria Moso and dishes she learned growing up in her Puebla hometown. You can sample specialties like masa patties, mole sauces, and banana leaf tamales alongside classic favorites like guacamole and chips. Plus, its barbacoa taco was awarded one of the “best tacos in Chicago” by Chicago Tribune.
Taste of Peru (Peru) – 6545 N Clark St
Travel to South America via the Taste of Peru. Seafood is the star on its menu, with a variety of ceviche appetizers and seafood/rice entrees, including paella. This casual, no-fuss restaurant offers a rich cultural experience beyond just food, with traditional live Peruvian music nights and a storefront shop for Peruvian crafts.
Sushi Boutique (Japan) – 1244 N Dearborn Pkwy
Visit Japan in the Claridge Hotel with a modern take on sushi dining. Sushi Boutique’s menu is flexible for any occasion, from a spontaneous mid-week happy hour to a 10-course omakase Sunday dinner. It has deep roots in the Chicago area as the sister restaurant of Sushi By Bou and Sushi Suite. Its unique hand-crafted cocktail menu rounds out the dining experience.
Dublin Bar & Grill (Ireland) – 1050 N State St
Find a taste of Ireland at this neighborhood fixture. More than just a bar, it opens at 8 a.m. and serves full meals all day, with Emerald Isle dishes from Irish Breakfast to Irish Stew. Its menu has barroom favorites like nachos and jalapeno poppers and includes many lighter options like veggie burgers and grilled salmon. In true Irish pub form, you can enjoy a classic, well-poured Guinness on tap.
Somerset (USA) – 1112 N State St
Land back in the U.S. at the Viceroy Hotel and the swanky, airy Somerset dining room. You’ll find American classics like New York strip steak, roast chicken, and some takes on global favorites, including homemade pastas. You can dine around the clock, with different menus for breakfast, lunch, brunch, and dinner, and a long list of drink options.
Wherever you decide to go, we wish you an enjoyable culinary trip. Bon Appetit!