CHICAGO — Twenty-five Chicago restaurants were awarded with coveted stars in the upcoming Michelin Guide 2018.
West Loop's Smyth was upgraded from a one-star ranking last year to two stars for what the guide calls "unique and inventive cuisine."
Michael Ellis, international director of Michelin Guides, said he's tried about half of Chicago's starred restaurants himself, including Smyth.
He said he was impressed by Smyth's "creativity" and "ability to combine different products from a farm nearby."
He's also impressed by dishes that include ingredients from afar, and he said the restaurant's seafood dishes made him feel like he could "close my eyes and be in Tokyo."
Elske, a West Loop restaurant that opened last December and was ranked second on Bon Appétit magazine's best new restaurants list, and Entente, a Lakeview restaurant that opened last October, were newcomers with one star.
Ellis said Chicago's food scene stands out from other major cities covered by the guide because its restaurants have overcome its "meat and potato" past and developed a number of restaurants by inventive chefs.
"I think that Chicago is unique in the sense that there is a food culture here that is based upon chefs who are completely unbound by tradition," Ellis said.
Lincoln Park's Alinea and West Loop's Grace retained the highest honor on the list with three stars.
Three restaurants came off the list. Uptown's 42 Grams, once awarded two stars, closed this summer, while Streeterville's tru closed this month.
Last week, Logan Square favorite Longman and Eagle learned it would lose a star and be designated a Bib Gourmand instead. Ellis said changes in the menu at that restaurant called for a change in the distinction it deserved.
Fifty-four Chicago restaurants were named to the Bib Gourmand list for 2018, a set of restaurants that are generally considered "affordable," typically offering two courses and a glass of wine or dessert for $40 or less, excluding tax and tip.
Here's a map and a full list with all honored restaurants:
Three Stars (Exceptional cuisine, worth a special journey)
• Alinea, 1723 N Halsted St, (Lincoln Park)
• Grace, 652 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
Two Stars (Excellent cuisine, worth a detour)
• Acadia, 1639 S. Wabash Ave. (South Loop)
• Oriole, 661 W. Walnut St. (West Loop)
• Sixteen, 401 N. Wabash Ave. (River North)
• Smyth, 177 N. Ada St. (West Loop) — Gained a star this year.
One Star (High quality cooking, worth a stop)
• Band of Bohemia, 4710 N. Ravenswood Ave. (Lincoln Square)
• Blackbird, 619 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Boka, 1729 N. Halsted St. (Lincoln Park)
• Dusek's Board & Beer, 1227 W. 18th St. (Pilsen)
• EL Ideas, 2419 W. 14th St. (Douglas Park)
• Elizabeth, 4835 N. Western Ave. (Lincoln Square)
• Elske, 1350 W. Randolph St. (West Loop) - New to List
• Entente, 3056 N. Lincoln Ave. (Lakeview) - New to List
• Everest, 440 S. LaSalle St. (Loop)
• Goosefoot, 2656 W. Lawrence Ave. (Lincoln Square)
• Green River, 259 E. Erie St. (Streeterville)
• NAHA, 500 N. Clark St. (River North)
• North Pond, 2610 N. Cannon Dr. (Lincoln Park)
• Parachute, 3500 N. Elston Ave. (Avondale)
• Roister, 951 W. Fulton Market (West Loop)
• Schwa, 1466 N. Ashland Ave. (Wicker Park)
• Sepia, 123 N. Jefferson St. (West Loop)
• Spiagga, 980 N. Michigan Ave. (Gold Coast)
• Topolobampo, 445 N. Clark St. (River North)
• Arami, 1829 W. Chicago Ave. (Ukrainian Village)
• Au Cheval, 800 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Avec, 615 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• BellyQ, 1400 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Bohemian House, 11 W. Illinois St. (River North)
• Ceres' Table, 3124 N. Broadway (Lakeview)
• Chilam Balam, 3023 N. Broadway (Lakeview)
• Cumin, 1414 N. Milwaukee Ave. (Wicker Park)
• DeCOLORES, 1626 S. Halsted St. (Pilsen)
• Dos Urban Cantina, 2829 W. Armitage Ave. (Logan Square)
• Dove's Luncheonette, 1545 N. Damen Ave. (Wicker Park)
• Fat Rice, 2957 W. Diversey Ave. (Logan Square)
• Frontera Grill, 445 N. Clark St. (River North)
• Giant, 3209 W. Armitage Ave. (Logan Square)
• Gilt Bar, 230 W. Kinzie St. (River North)
• Girl and the Goat, 809 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Green Zebra, 1460 W. Chicago Ave. (Noble Square)
• GT Fish and Oyster, 531 N. Wells St. (River North)
• HaiSous, 1800 S. Carpenter St. (Pilsen)
• Han 202, 605 W. 31st St. (Chinatown)
• Herb, 5424 N. Broadway (Edgewater)
• Hopleaf, 5148 N. Clark St. (Andersonville)
• Jaipur, 847 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Jam, 3057 W. Logan Blvd. (Logan Square)
• Jin Thai Cuisine, 5458 N. Broadway (Edgewater)
• Kai Zan, 2557 W. Chicago Ave. (Humboldt Park)
• Longman & Eagle, 2657 N. Kedzie Ave. (Logan Square) — Lost star
• Luella's Southern Kitchen, 4609 N. Lincoln Ave. (Lincoln Square)
• Lula Cafe, 2537 N. Kedzie Ave. (Logan Square)
• Mana Food Bar, 1742 W. Division St. (Wicker Park)
• Mango Pickle, 5842 N. Broadway (Edgewater)
• Maude's Liquor Bar, 840 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• mfk., 432 W. Diversey Pkwy. (Lakeview)
• Mi Tocaya, 2800 W. Logan Blvd (Logan Square)
• MingHin Cuisine, 2168 S. Archer Ave. (Chinatown)
• Mott Street, 1401 N. Ashland Ave. (Wicker Park)
• Nana, 3267 S. Halsted St. (Bridgeport)
• Pleasant House Pub, 2119 S. Halsted St. (Pilsen)
• Quiote, 2456 N. California Ave. (Logan Square)
• Sabri Nihari, 2502 W. Devon Ave. (West Ridge)
• San Soo Gab San, 5247 N. Western Ave. (Lincoln Square)
• Smoque, 3800 N. Pulaski Road (Irving Park)
• Sol de Mexico, 3018 N. Cicero Ave. (Belmont Cragin)
• Sushi Dokku, 823 W. Randolph St. (West Loop)
• Table, Donkey and Stick, 2728 W. Armitage Ave. (Logan Square)
• The Angry Crab, 5665 N. Lincoln Ave. (West Ridge)
• The Bristol, 2152 N. Damen Ave. (Bucktown)
• The Duck Inn, 2701 S. Eleanor St. (Bridgeport)
• The Publican, 837 W. Fulton Market (West Loop)
• The Purple Pig, 500 N. Michigan Ave. (Magnificent Mile)
• True Food Kitchen, 1 W. Erie St. (River North)
• Two, 1132 W. Grand Ave. (West Town)
• Untitled, 111 W. Kinzie St. (River North)
• Wood, 3335 N. Halsted St. (Lakeview)