9 Of The Oldest Restaurants In Chicago, Illinois

oldest restaurants in chicago

While it is no small feat for any restaurant to remain open for decades at a stretch, food connoisseurs clamor to be the first to check the plenty of iconic restaurants around any place that have stood the test of time. Chicago is no exception to that and has a plethora of classic restaurants that make this fair city special and speak out loud about its renowned dining culture. Despite its young age, Chicago is home to some of the oldest and finest restaurants in the country, dating back as far as the early 1900s. Whether it’s the great food, ambiance, nostalgia or fantastic service and whether you reside in Illinois or are traveling to or through it, make sure you check out some of these time-tested restaurants which people have stuck around for time immemorial. If you are keen on visiting some of the oldest restaurants in Chicago, Illinois, USA, we put together a handy list of nine famous places for you to explore!

1. Daley's Restaurant

Posted by Daly's Restaurant on Wednesday, 13 December 2017

This 1892-born Chicago old-timer is the city’s oldest establishment and lies in downtown Wausau. The family-run restaurant features refreshingly vintage interiors untouched by modernity and serves sumptuous fried chicken wings, salmon patties, Fiesta burger, home-made peach cobbler, and Belgian waffles. Daley’s serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner but it’s popularly known for breakfast, which is served at all hours. A vast selection of side dishes is enough to satiate your hunger pangs- hash browns, sausage links, oatmeal, sliced peaches, and raisin toast. The other two meals are equally interesting and offer some mouth-watering steaks, salads, sandwiches, seafood, pies, and cakes.

Daley's Restaurant

Address: 809 E 63rd St Chicago, IL 60637

Website: Daley’s Restaurant

Opening hours: 6 AM to 8:30 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 30 USD

2. The Berghoff Restaurant

Posted by The Berghoff Restaurant on Thursday, 30 November 2017

One of the oldest family-run businesses in Illinois, this restaurant has been serving authentic German-style cuisine and culture since 1898. The present-day menu at Berghoff has evolved to add newer, lighter and more contemporary dishes, but the taste is still as indistinguishable as old Berghoff, down to the famous root beer. The restaurant offers a wide variety of appetizers, salads, sandwiches and lots of fresh fish including scallops, shrimp, squid, mussels, and salmon in a wonderful saffron broth. Along with providing a truly unique dining experience within the setting of the historic Berghoff edifice, the cherry on the cake is the freshly sourced ingredients, seasonal menus and vegetarian and gluten-free dishes that are available.

The Berghoff Restaurant

Address: 17 W Adams St Chicago, IL 60603

Website: The Berghoff Restaurant

Opening hours: 11 AM to 9 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 30 USD

3. The Walnut Room

Posted by The Walnut Room on Monday, 14 August 2017

Established in 1907, The Walnut Room’s eclectic menu features seafood cocktail and classics such as pan-fried cod and thyme-roasted chicken. Being one of the first ever restaurant to open inside a department store, dining at The Walnut Room is a transcending and transporting experience. Featuring imported Circassian wood panelings, the restaurant feels more like an 18th-century private restro with its high ceilings, a magnificent marble fountain and grand chandeliers. The elaborate dinner buffet is exceptional and constitutes classic and delicious offerings like hummus, Wisconsin Asiago crusted chicken, terrific meatloaf and made-to-order roast beef.

The Walnut Room

Address: 111 N State St Chicago, IL 60602

Website: The Walnut Room

Opening hours: 11 AM to 11:30 PM

Average price for two: 8 - 28 USD

4. Pompei

Posted by Pompei Taylor Street on Thursday, 5 October 2017

This historic Italian bakery opened its doors in 1909, with their perfect fresh bread and cheese pizza. Pompei moved and expanded two times in the Taylor Street area of the Little Italy neighborhood and boasts three other locations as well. It’s a true veteran of Chicago restaurants, and the food will surely have you coming back for more. Established by Luigi Davino, who named the restaurant ‘Pompei’ because of its close proximity to the Our Lady of Pompeii Church, made sure that the entire family participated in the pizza-making operations. Today, members of the fourth generation of the Davino family are actively involved in running the restaurant which has since expanded to add several additional locations in the Chicago area.


Address: 1531 W Taylor St Chicago, IL 60607


Opening hours: 10 AM to 9 PM

Average price for two: 8 - 28 USD

5. Lou Mitchell's

Breakfast in Chicago! Lou Mitchell’s the best #mychicago #chicagoblogger #chicagoland #classicchicago #chicagoicon #loumitchells

Posted by Larissa Rolley Atelier on Saturday, 21 July 2018

Being a favorite of past Presidents Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush and Obama, the breakfast diner is famous across the world, and continues to be thronged by politicians, artists, journalists, celebrities, and athletes alike. The restaurant continues to serve hungry patrons till date and looks very much the same now as it did at its inception, both inside and out. Expect to relish some delectable pies, game meat and fresh oysters, along with the usual staples such as waffles, pancakes and hobo skillet. Apart from that, fresh baked breads and pastries, Greek and raisin toast, homemade special pies. Lou Mitchell’s has unique and homemade varieties of pies available, and the slices are always quite large.

Lou Mitchell's

Address: 565 W Jackson Blvd Chicago, IL 60661

Website: Lou Mitchell’s

Opening hours: 6 AM to 3 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 35 USD

6. Italian Village

We love the lights all aglow outside of Italian Village this time of year ✨✨✨

Posted by Italian Village- Chicago on Tuesday, 11 December 2018

This place is an absolute must stop if you are yearning for top-notch Italian treats while traveling through Chicago. Now encompassing three restaurants, the family-run restaurant serves classic Italian-American dishes amidst decor meant to look like a quaint European village straight out of an old-time movie set. Located in the heart of Downtown Chicago, the restaurant has been cooking everything to order since 1927, with delicious food that include bolognese, classic spaghetti with meat sauce and a sausage, cannelloni, chicken Alfredo and seafood ravioli, along with one of the most impressive collections of wine in the city, with over 1,100 selections for a total of 35,000 bottles. The authentic Italian eatery prides itself in being the oldest Italian restaurant in the city and has seen Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Barbra Streisand and Frank Sinatra among its loyal patrons.

Italian Village

Address: 71 W Monroe St Chicago, IL 60603

Website: Italian Village

Opening hours: 11 AM to 12 AM

Average price for two: 10 - 35 USD

7. Orange Garden Restaurant

Posted by Orange Garden Restaurant on Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Serving up sumptuous traditional Chinese eats to its guests since 1932, this restaurant has never left its spot in Irving Park. Being one of the oldest Chinese restaurants in Chicago, it opened for business in 1924, and dishes out generous portions, so be sure to come with an appetite. While ownership has changed hands only once, the current owner is supposed to be a family friend of the original owners, and have been preparing gourmet Chinese food while maintaining a high rated status among its patrons. Its specialty dishes include Egg rolls, Cantonese Fried Shrimp, Peking duck, Mongolian Beef, Egg drop soup, and Nanking pork loin.

Orange Garden Restaurant

Address: 1942 W Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60613

Website: Orange Garden Restaurant

Opening hours: 11 AM to 10 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 30 USD

8. Twin Anchors Restaurant

Posted by Twin Anchors Ribs on Friday, 8 February 2013

This classic Chicago establishment has never strayed away from its initial culture of serving generous portions of its prime baby back ribs. It is the oldest speakeasy turned bar in this part of the country, dwarfing humble neighbors to international celebrities like Frank Sinatra, Emeril Lagasse, and Conan O'Brien. Guests will enjoy the overall maritime theme and cozy decor of the restaurant, and not too much has changed decor-wise throughout the years. Opened for the public in 1932 and under new ownership since 1978, Twin Anchors has seen waves of gentrification and has been cooking up Chicago-styled baked ribs from the same building since the inception.

Twin Anchors Restaurant

Address: 1655 N Sedgwick St Chicago, IL 60614

Website: Twin Anchors Restaurant

Opening hours: Mon - Thu 5 PM - 10:30 PM, Fri 5 PM - 12 AM, Sat 12 PM - 12 AM, Sun 12 PM - 10:30 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 30 USD

9. Bruna's Ristorante

Posted by Bruna's Ristorante on Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Although its one of the youngest on this list, Bruna Cani is the Italian mecca of Chicago and continues to dish out Northern Italian cuisine to hungry patrons. Over the years, countless celebrities and dignitaries have dined here, including Harrison Ford, Richard Gere, Tommy Lasorda, all the Daley brothers, and Dennis Farina. Once you step in, soak in the vibe and see all the vintage furnishings, it’s hard not to imagine this place having a vibrant past and old time charm. The place will make you feel completely transported back in time. Come here to sample a great variety of Italian specialties including red sauce dishes, Lasagna, eggplant parmigiana, spaghetti bolognese, capellini al Pomodoro and mouth-watering Tiramisu, along with the choicest selection of wines and some good liqueurs.

Bruna's Ristorante

Address: 2424 S Oakley Ave, Chicago, IL 60608

Website: Bruna’s Ristorant

Opening hours: Mon - Thu 11 AM to 10 PM, Fri - Sat 11 AM - 11 PM, Sun 1 PM - 10 PM

Average price for two: 11 - 30 USD

Dine to your heart's content at some of the age-old restaurants in Chicago

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Roger Rowlett used under CC BY-SA 2.5

We figure if you can keep it going for over close to a century, these restaurants must surely be doing something right. So wrap your head around this, and consider stopping in or reserving a meal at one or more of these classic Chicago establishments that still resonate with the same magic and glamour after 50 years or more of doing business. Appreciate the rich food and the culture that has been running in most of these old culinary haunts in Chicago, Illinois, for that long.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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I hail from India. A finance professional turned entrepreneur, I'm also an avid traveller, content writer and reader by passion. I enjoy intellectual challenges, exploring new cultures, meeting new...Read more

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