Britain may not be known for its cuisine, but it turns out Chicago offers some pretty great pub grub and classic British dishes, like savory pies and bubbles and squeak at Pleasant House Bakery. If you'd prefer a fish fry, Duke of Perth has two all-you-can-eat nights each week and Mrs. Murphy and Sons delivers hearty beef stew. Head to these restaurants for the best British food in Chicago, then keep the night going at one of the city's best Irish pubs.
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Best British food in Chicago
At this gastropub, classic British comfort food is seemingly simple but incredibly flavorful: massive haddock fillets are turned into ethereal fish-and-chips, and an excellent charcuterie plate features rotating rillettes, pâté and fresh sausages. A great beer program inspires lingering, while seemingly simple but delicious desserts erase any thoughts of starchy English custard.
Chicago’s resident royal pie baker has made some big changes this past year—condensing both the Chicago location and Three Oaks, Michigan, outpost into the former Nightwood space to turn it into an all-day pub. Start with the pickles, a tiny jar filled with tangy pickled beets, carrots and gherkins, then pick any pie for dinner with a side of the salty, crunchy bubble and squeak, a traditional English dish with fried veggies—you can’t go wrong with the savory steak-and-ale pie and the creamy, veggie-friendly kale and mushroom number.
Owner Billy Lawless and chef Chris Gawronski nailed the gastropub with this Mag Mile hit. The whiskey list is lengthy, beer options reach beyond the basics and wines are accompanied by clever, straightforward descriptions. The food is rich and aggressively flavorful, from the perfect-for-snacking Scotch egg to the Gage venison burger, served a juicy medium-rare and dripping with melted onion marmalade and gouda.
You’ll never know how relaxing Celtic music can be until you spend an afternoon at this Scottish ale house. Listen closely as you hang out on the serene outdoor patio, eating fish and chips (it’s all-you-can-eat on Wednesdays and Fridays) and drinking from one of the best Scotch lists in the city—soon you’ll be humming along.
The Northman is a cider bar, first and foremost. But there's a menu filled with European fare from crispy, malt vinegar–laden fish and chips to pork and vegetable pasties. You'll also find a Welsh rarebit on the menu, made with house cider and Barber's cheddar over a grilled miche (French sourdough). The best part? You don't even have to find somewhere else to head after your meal as the bar will keep serving you ciders, making you feel like you were in the U.K. proper.