How much time do you spend in Andersonville? The answer is probably not enough. And if you live in or nearby Andersonville, we encourage you to tell everyone else about the awesome restaurants around you. There’s great southern comfort food, a hot dog joint from two former Hot Doug’s employees, and date night spots that will help you get…to know someone.
Here’s our guide to eating in Andersonville.
Head to Bar Roma for great rustic Italian food and to feel like you’re in a page of “Charming Italian Countryside Home” magazine. The space has a lot of wood and distressed furniture, and bags of flour lying around to remind you they make all their pastas in house. They have an entire section of their menu dedicated to polpette - the “balls,” and you’ll find a variety of meatballs including spicy pork belly and veal. But we like coming here for their pastas - the cacio e pepe is fantastic, and you can’t go wrong ordering whatever pasta is the special for the day.
Blu 57 is one of Andersonville’s more upscale restaurants, serving mainly steak and seafood with a Thai twist. The space is sleek and modern, but still manages to keep a neighborhood feel. Dishes that lean heavier on the Thai flavors are your best bet, like the lobster tail with curried risotto and the sticky rice dessert. It’s BYOB, and if you’re feeling on the fancier side, they offer a six course prix fixe menu for $85.
Go to Appellation for one reason: the cheese plate. This restaurant is from the same folks who have Pastoral, which means there’s an incredible selection of cheese, meat, and accoutrements. The food here can be inconsistent, but if you stick with coming here for an indoor picnic of cheese and charcuterie, you’re in good hands. There’s a bistro feel, and the friendly servers will help you pick out a wine from their extensive menu that pairs perfectly with your spread. It’s a perfect neighborhood spot to hang out and catch up with friends.
This cozy neighborhood spot has everything from bacon wrapped baked eggs with polenta to a roasted asparagus and prosciutto benedict. Open for breakfast and brunch seven days a week, M. Henry is always a strong move while it’s light outside.
Before Sushi Mike opened the new fancy digs in the West Loop, there was the original Andersonville location. Quality sushi in a laid-back environment, which is one of the most important things you need in your life. Not cheap sushi, not stupid expensive sushi, but sushi that is good and reasonably priced. That’s Tanoshii.
It’s impossible to have a bad Date Night at Vincent. Literally impossible. If a date goes bad here then you need to reevaluate yourself or the person you took out, because Vincent is a slam dunk. Go for dinner, bring your own nice bottle of wine, and share some small plates and mussels.
A welcoming little cafe serving all kinds of interesting soups, salads, and sandwiches. And pie, of course, because with a name like First Slice Pie Cafe there better be pie. Get pie to go along with your savory lunch, or pop in only for the pie.
The Bongo Room has locations all over town these days, and Andersonville is one of those spots. Chocolate tower french toast and caramel pretzel pancakes anyone? Ok, fine, you convinced us.
Big Jones is serving big Southern flavors, and that’s always something we can get behind. We can also always get behind fried chicken, something Big Jones is rather good at making. They’re also good at brunch, which includes beignets, so it’s basically like having New Orleans in your backward but with more snow and less hurricanes.
Looking to get handsy over Asian food? Jin Ju is the spot. While the food is rooted in traditional Korean, the atmosphere is a very modern space. It’s a sleek, dimly lit space with mostly candlelight. Make sure to get a sojutini, which is a martini made with soju, the go-to alcohol in South Korea.
We’re not entirely sure what the term “gastropub” means these days, but for us, Hopleaf embodies that term. It’s a bar with an exceptional beer selection and a food menu that goes above and beyond typical bar food. The cashew butter and fig jam takes a childhood favorite PB&J to the next level, and you’ll wonder where it’s been all your life.
Little Bad Wolf is oh so good. This is the kind of place you wander into for a few drinks in a spur of the moment situation and end up pleasantly surprised with the food. Treat it as a place you want to go to when both eats and drinks are in the cards.
Cajun and Creole cuisine? Oh h*ll yes. Any time a roux is involved in cooking you know the end result will be good, and that holds true with the smoked chicken gumbo and Louisiana jambalaya at Pearl’s. We’d eat at Pearl’s at least once a week if we didn’t think it would take so many days off our lives.
If you’re still in mourning over the loss of Hot Doug’s (RIP), then you need to hit Hot “G” Dog immediately. Two former line cooks at Hot Doug’s started Hot “G” Dog to carry on the legacy, with Doug’s blessing of course. It’s not the same, because Hot Doug’s can’t be replicated, but it’s still good. And there’s nowhere else you can get kangaroo hot dogs on the regular.
Wherever you eat in Andersonville, no meal is complete without a stop at George’s Ice Cream. Even if you ordered dessert at whatever nearby restaurant you ate at, stop at George’s for ice cream to follow up your dessert.
Taste of Lebanon is either a Lebanese restaurant in Andersonville or an all-inclusive trip that flies you to Lebanon so you can lick the ground and immediately fly right back. Stick to the classics like hummus, stuffed grape leaves, falafel, schwarma, and kefta if you think it’s the former of the two.