Looking to elevate your dining experience in the Windy City? Chicago offers a plethora of private dining restaurants that go above and beyond to provide you with an unforgettable culinary adventure. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion, hosting a corporate event, or simply seeking an intimate dining experience, the city has you covered. From upscale steakhouses to cozy Italian trattorias, these establishments offer exclusive spaces, customized menus, and impeccable service to ensure your gathering is nothing short of extraordinary. In this article, we’ll guide you through some of the best private dining restaurants in Chicago, where you can indulge in exquisite cuisine while relishing the privacy and ambiance of a dedicated dining space. Get ready to savor every moment in the company of your loved ones or colleagues as we explore these culinary gems.
Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab
This restaurant may be famous for its steaks and seafood, but Joe’s also has top-notch private dining. Located across from the upscale Shops at North Ridge, you can enjoy a shopping spree before settling in for your meal. Or, take some photos at the nearby Tribune Tower, a historical landmark about a block away. The selection of private dining at Joe’s is what makes it so unique. Some rooms hold as many as 120 people comfortably, and there are fully private and semi-private options. A few menu choices for private dining include my personal favorites, Chilean Sea Bass, Calamari, and bone-in Filet Mignon.
Boasting everything from breakfast to evening cocktail hours, Nico Osteria takes private dining to a new level. Your private party will enjoy their fare overlooking the Gold Coast neighborhood, one of the most magnificent views Chicago has to offer. Nico is slightly below the point where North Rush Street and North State Street merge. Nico has some of the best Italian cuisines in the city, including their private dining menus. I have had many dinner receptions here and can vouch for their braised beef short rib and pasta dishes. Nico also has an extensive breakfast list, ranging from granola and fruit to chef-selected choices like prosciutto and avocado toast.
If you want an expansive array of food choices, RPM is the way to go. They have several locations around the city, but their private event headquarters are near the House of Blues and the lovely Bataan-Corregidor Memorial Bridge. Their event space is 6,000 square feet, with a divisible ballroom and views of the Chicago River. RPM Events has every kind of fare you can imagine. I love their stations like the cheese & salami option because you can pick how much or how little you would like. Meal-wise, the plated selections are my top choice. You cannot go wrong with freshly baked bread and gnocchi!
Private dining does not have to be stuffy – and Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba is the finest example of that. Its lively, charming atmosphere is perfect for private parties with rowdy crowds or just groups that want to have a good time. The vibe is laid-back but refined and oozes joy with bright colors and traditional Spanish fare. Before your meal, take a walk through the eclectic Oz Park (themed after the Wizard of Oz) that is about a three-minute walk away. This spot is also great if you’re looking to dine out one night in the city! What I adore about Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba is the unique nature of the food. With hot and cold tapas, Sangria, and Paella options, a private feast here is never unexciting. That said, their food is relatively approachable, with offerings like baked goat cheese in tomato sauce and seafood paella.
Shaw’s Crab House
Steps away from the Michigan Avenue ferry terminal is Shaw’s Crab House, a classic seafood restaurant with exclusive private dining. Shaw’s vibe is traditional but modern, with the 1940s-era decor in the Oyster Bar area and more refined aesthetics in the Main Dining Room. To me, the best option at Shaw’s regarding private dining is the 4-course plated dinner. You get to try all of Shaw’s most famous dishes, like king crab legs, crab cakes, and ribeyes for those who do not eat seafood. They have something for everyone, including dessert – the peppermint ice cream is heavenly.
Forbidden Root Restaurant & Brewery
Trendsetters and hipsters, this is the private dining experience you need. With beers crafted with botanicals in the restaurant to rustic wooden tables, Forbidden Root has a boho-chic vibe perfect for free spirits. You will find Forbidden Root about one block south of Commercial Club Park, almost to the intersection of West Chicago and Wood. Forbidden Root is one of my absolute favorite places in The Windy City, especially for private dining. Their menu includes hits such as duck and dumplings – gnocchi and crispy duck – and Ramen-seasoned popcorn. The menu refines comfort food, making it perfect for a fall or winter wedding with chilly guests or a happy hour with colleagues.
NoodleBird at Fat Rice
With a name like NoodleBird, you know you are in for a special meal. This Asian fusion restaurant has the charm of a classic diner but the ingredients of a high-end establishment. The vibe here is casual, so if you have a relaxed event or want something lowkey, NoodleBird is ideal. The food at NoodleBird is not for the weak. It is very adventurous, and picky eaters may have a hard time finding something for their palates. Catering with NoodleBird is their version of private dining, and they serve fares such as shrimp and garlic dumplings and curried rice macaroni.
Large parties, il Porcellino is for you. One of their private dining menus comes priced per dozen with a two dozen minimum, so if you have plenty of guests, il Porcellino should be on your radar. The restaurant has rustic decor and several romantically lit private dining spaces. I would say the vibe is a minimal luxury. It is refined but not pretentious. It is a pretty easy place to find, too – you will find it in the North Ridge district, near the Museum of Broadcast Communications. Family-style dinners are an Italian specialty and what il Porcellino does best. Hearty, fulfilling pasta dishes are what sticks out whenever I eat here, and I advise you not to come unless you’re ready to chow down! The cheese ravioli is a must-have.
The Ivy Room At Tree Studios
The Ivy Room is a breathtaking, airy event space in Chicago with its private chef that prepares customized menus for all. I will never get over how stunning this space is. The courtyard is filled with lush greenery and suits a cocktail party flawlessly, while the interior makes for a lively dance floor. And, since it is only a block north of the Grand subway station, it is easy to get there. The Ivy Room offers an abundance of menus, ranging from charcuterie boards to Italian dinners. Fall is my favorite time of year, so their Autumn menu holds a special place in my heart. The Maine scallops warm you up wonderfully on a chilly fall evening.
The Chicago Firehouse Restaurant
Enjoy your meal in historical digs in the renowned South Loop district at The Chicago Firehouse Restaurant. Initially a firehouse, today it operates as a restaurant and bar with unique firehouse-like furniture and spacious dining rooms for private parties. Classy casual is the best way to describe the vibe at The Chicago Firehouse, and each private dining area has its feel. From brunch in the Solarium to a reception in the intimate Mayor’s Room, the Firehouse has something for everyone. Serving up American comfort food like macaroni and cheese and Vegan options like cauliflower steak, no one leaves hungry.
Prime & Provisions Steakhouse
If you want a luxurious feel for your private event, look no further. Prime & Provisions has tons of private and semi-private spaces for a memorable evening out. They enforce a strict dress code as well, so make sure your guests dress appropriately. Prime & Provisions is next to the Riverwalk, a lively stretch parallel to the Chicago River. Customization is fundamental for the perfect event, and Prime & Provisions has you covered. I cannot recommend their mac and cheese cups enough, and their steaks are melt-in-your-mouth tender. The Prime Seated Dinner is my favorite private dining option here, as you can choose everything from filet mignon to chocolate mousse tarts.
Siena Tavern is one of the best restaurants with private rooms in the city. Their art-deco, stylish decor, and imperial-looking furnishings will have your guests feeling like they are dining amongst the elite. You will find Siena Tavern across the Riverwalk from Prime & Provisions in the River North district. Serving fine Italian cuisine and providing top-notch service is what Siena Tavern is known for, so their private dining is, of course, exquisite. Their most private venue is the wine cellar, a room that looks fit for royalty. Spoil your guests with Wagyu meatballs, handmade pasta, and dreamy tiramisu.
Do you want to have one of the most talked-about private parties in Chicago? Carnivale has you covered. The interior is one of a kind, with neon scarves draped across the ceiling, eclectic pop-art gracing the walls, and colorful chairs setting the scene for an unforgettably fun evening. Located just off of the Kennedy Expressway, Carnivale is in the center of it all. The menu at Carnivale includes Caribbean, Spanish, and Latin-American cuisines. They offer four dining styles – family-style, heavy reception, buffet, and plated. Carnivale does not have specified menus for private dining, giving organizers ample room to customize their selections.
Private Dining by Sepia
Tucked between restaurants and the Ogilvie Transportation Center is Private Dining by Sepia, an exclusive restaurant for special occasions. Sepia only has private service, so rest assured your party will never be interrupted by unwelcome guests. Boasting Michelin-starred fare in a plush environment, Sepia is ideal for formal soirees. The honey-glazed duck has to be my favorite menu option from Sepia, but there are so many delicious choices, your guests will swoon. They also have a five-course menu customized by the chef for the ultimate feast. Private Dining by Sepia mixes traditional comfort food with exotic accouterments for a truly individualized experience.
Why Trust Us?
When it comes to local restaurant recommendations, we pride ourselves on being a reliable and trustworthy resource. Our suggestions are not just based on our personal experiences, ensuring a more authentic and well-rounded perspective, but also on extensive online research. We diligently searched the internet and reviewed 5 credible sites and blogs, including Opentable.com and Chicago.eater.com.
We compiled all the findings in one location and sorted them by the frequency of mentions to ensure you receive top-notch recommendations. We strive to present you with a curated list of establishments that truly stand out, allowing you to enjoy the best dining experiences possible.
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