Le Bouchon

Restaurants, French Bucktown
5 out of 5 stars
(4user reviews)
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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Static map showing venue location

Average User Rating

4.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

Le Bouchon was a very fun recent dinner experience. I've been wanting to come here for ages, and I finally did, to try the prix fixe menu on a Tuesday ($35). You can choose any of the entrees, plates and desserts on the menu, so it's a pretty incredible prix fixe menu. YOU MUST TRY THE MUSSELS. They are insane, in the most decadent vodka sauce. They were my favorite part of the dinner! 

The cocktails pack quite a punch (I think we were getting some looks with our laughter...) 

Onto the main course. I did the pot of meat, otherwise known as the pot au feu. It had this corned wagyu meat inside that sort of just melted like butter in the bowl and in my mouth. The steak frites were nice, but a tad on the smokey side. An unusual flavor for this French classic. 

The desserts were actually a bit of a let down after everything else, but I think I should have went with the creme brûlée instead of the special. Overall, a charming little French restaurant with solid food and a great prix fixe menu!

Le Bouchon is the best French place in the city. It's super authentic bistro fare-- a.k.a., VERY liberal with the butter, and a very serious red wine list.


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.