The United Center, located on the city’s Near West Side, is in limbo, squished between the fancy restaurants of Randolph Restaurant Row and the older guard of Madison Avenue. It isn’t like Wrigleyville, where North Side developers are constructing condos, restaurants, and shops along with Wrigley Field. Parking spaces and housing cover the United Center. That is one of the reasons the arena recently opened a new restaurant inside the United Center, Queenie’s Supper Club, which aims to provide fans with comfort.
However, for those of more discriminating preferences, the area does have some great alternatives. Fine dining, family-friendly casual, and classic Chicago burgers are all accessible. Though arena food has changed in some places, you don’t have to rely on concessionaires to have a fun time. There’s no need to miss out on gameplay by waiting in line for just a taco.
These are some of the best places to eat near United Center.
1. Eden Chicago
Eden is Paramount Events’ first restaurant, and it serves delicious Mediterranean cuisine. The wine list is fascinating, the decor is vibrant, and the pitas are soft and fluffy.
2. WESTEND BAR & GRILLE
It’s a good place to go before a United Center sporting event, especially a Chicago Blackhawks hockey game. Thirty-three plasma TVs in the welcoming two-level bar screened the sports. The leather, TV-equipped booths are the perfect seats for sports enthusiasts. On game days, it gets busy, but that’s because customers can rely on the bar food, which includes tacos, burritos, and burgers, as well as something from the extensive beer menu, which includes special and locally made ales. If you’re taking the free and frequent shuttle from the bar to the United Center, feel free to order another. Brunch is a popular option here, with bottomless Mimosas and a Bloody Mary bar.
3. SoJu BBQ
SoJu BBQ is a laid-back Korean restaurant that serves up unique Asian barbecue and other dishes. The queue can be messy and slow at times, but carnivores are exposed to hulking parts of short rib and other Korean staples modified to match contemporary tastes.
4. BONCI PIZZA
Pizzaiolo Gabriele Bonci picked Chicago as his first pizzeria location outside of Italy, and the crowds are raving about his Roman-style pizza, which is sliced with scissors and sold by weight. Bonci uses only fresh, organic ingredients, most of which are shipped from Italy, and calls “agriculture as culinary art,” so the toppings on the Roman-style crust can change on a regular basis. You’ll be unable to have the same pie twice because the menu changes hourly and Bonci has over 1,500 recipes that have originated from the Italian ovens. Expect a variety of dried meats, cheeses, and seasonal vegetables.
Hummus and mortadella; lettuce, ricotta, and anchovy; spicy eggplant; and mushroom, prosciutto Crudo, mozzarella, arugula are recent choices. Single-serve malt, champagne, and bottled cocktails can be used to lubricate the pipes.
5. Billy Goat Tavern
Billy Goat Tavern, a Chicago landmark made popular by Saturday Night Live, has long been a fan favourite. Customers know what to expect: small burgers and cheap beer in a retro atmosphere.
7. KAISER TIGER SAUSAGE, BACON & BEER BAR
Kaiser Tiger can be an excellent pre or post-United Center destination. In the fall, the beer garden doubles as an ice curling rink with campfires, hot chocolate, and s’mores, and in the summer, the 250-seat beer garden features sports like bocce ball, giant Jenga, bags, beer pong, and live entertainment. Bacon Grenades – hot beef and pork meatballs covered in bacon, beer-battered, and deep-fried; poutine; and quesadillas are among the spicy options on the menu.
You can fulfil your appetite at a sandwich shop or dine at Macello, which is about a mile from the United Center. Scents from the wood-burning oven stench “dove si Mangia bene” (where you eat well) throughout the room, which has an old-world charm with custom murals. The back patio is ideal for alfresco dining with a seasonal cocktail, a glass of juicy champagne, live music, and ongoing activities. The rustic ristorante’s cuisine is influenced by the dishes of Puglia, Italy, so seafood is particularly delicious. Begin with stuffed calamari or baby clams au gratin before moving on to great pizzas like the Pugliese, which features fresh mozzarella, tomato sauce, chorizo, and burrata. Chops, lamb, and cod are often cooked in wood-burning ovens, giving the pick of the day or roast chicken a heady aroma. A dozen pasta and risotto dishes fill out the excellent menu.
8. Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio
If tourists want to go fancy, they should go to this Italian restaurant from James Beard Award-winning chef Sarah Grueneberg. Her pasta is inventive and meticulously prepared, and the dining room is warm and welcoming. Monteverde is always full, and reservations are actually recommended.