Le Bouchon

  • Restaurants
  • French
Critics' pick
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Photograph: Kate Gross
Le Bouchon

Yes, it’s small and crowded, and you’ll have to wait at the bar for a bit even with a reservation. But it’s the closest thing Chicago has to that adorable little bistro in Paris. Regulars have their never-fail favorites: the flaky, caramelly onion tart; the robust onion soup with a gluttonous amount of Gruyère; the butter-topped steak flanked by perfectly crisp frites; the hard-to-find seared veal kidneys with mustard sauce; the feeds-two duck à l’orange; and the simple profiteroles. Only snootier waiters could make for a more French experience.

Venue name: Le Bouchon
Address: 1958 N Damen Ave

Cross street: between Homer St and Armitage Ave
Opening hours: Lunch, dinner (closed Sun)
Transport: El stop:Blue to Damen. Bus:50,73.
Price: Average main course: $19
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Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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Kris Vire

This adorable Bucktown spot turns out excellent renditions of traditional French fare in a lively, welcoming (if small) room. Dishes like a rich onion soup, a generous bouillabaisse and a well-executed steak frites (with herb butter or sauce au poivre) are quite satisfying, as is the healthy wine list. There's no space to wait for a table, though; in the winter you'll want to make a reservation.