BOKA

Modern American

  • 94
  • 2015 Best Architecture
  • 2016 Best Architecture
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Overview

After 10 years, BOKA continues to entice patrons to Lincoln Park, whether dining pre-theater or celebrating a special occasion. This stylish Michelin-starred restaurant serves creative new American cuisine, like grilled beef short rib with morels and favas or Peking duck breast with preserved lemon a la carte or via tasting menus. An expansive wine list focuses on American and European wines in an intimate setting with leopard-print seats and a back garden patio.

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What the Food Critics are Saying

“This is the kind of place one can sink into and not care to leave. Chef Lee Wolen's menu may be modern, but it is widely appealing with a Mediterranean edge. Begin with Spanish octopus that is tender with a bit of pleasant chew from the grill, served with a harmonious hodgepodge of Japanese eggplant coins, fingerling potatoes, cubes of compressed Granny Smith apple, and shredded pork finished with pork broth and shiso leaves. Thin and finely crafted ravioli may be filled with chopped salt cod and tossed with fresh favas, wilted arugula, and near-melting artichokes in velvety velouté sauce. The salty-sweet chocolate cake is not to be missed.” – Michelin

“They slow-grill a terrific beef short rib for 58 hours, and what comes out is closer to a juicy little steak. A mass of hen of the woods mushrooms and nubs of corned beef tongue fortify and amplify the meat. A magnificent duck breast, juicy and rich, brings together implausible accompaniments—mustard, prunes, heavily roasted fennel—in a way that makes their union inevitable. The artichoke soup with crispy smoked sturgeon and browned shallots, an explosive marriage of contrasting textures, is nothing short of brilliant.” – Chicago Magazine

“I'm quite serious when I tell you the broccoli salad is a must-order dish; this picture-perfect composition of raw, shaved stems and roasted florets is brightened with preserved lemon and a barely there lemon vinaigrette. Marcona almonds and Parmesan sablet add crispness, and more support comes from below (a puddle of Greek yogurt blended with broccoli puree) and above (tiny curls of shaved Parmesan). Heirloom carrots with smoked goat cheese and carrot crumble (think dried crumbs of barely sweetened carrot cake), and a fanciful play on panzanella with crushed pumpernickel croutons, poached egg, asparagus and strips of smoked arctic char, are equally memorable.” – Chicago Tribune

Ambience

Newly remodeled by Simeon Deary Design Group, the space is sophisticated and comfortable. The main dining room is finished in creams and browns, leather and fabric. The lively bar/lounge area is brick-walled and dimly lit, with dark leather and playful accents. An eye-catching second dining area features a lush living wall of ferns and mosses dotted with whimsical portraits of finely dressed animals.

Accolades

  • One Michelin Star 2011-2016
  • Meg Galus: Pastry Chef of the Year 2016 - Chicago Tribune
  • Three stars from the Chicago Tribune 2014
  • Number 7: Phil Vettel's Top 50 Restaurants 2016 - Chicago Tribune
  • Four stars from Time Out 2014
  • Lee Wolen: Winner, 2015 Chicago Tribune Dining Award for Chef of the Year
  • Restaurant and Chef of the Year 2015 – Jean Banchet Awards
  • 38 Essential Chicago Restaurants 2015 – Eater Chicago
  • Zagat rating of 26 out of 30

Menu for BOKA

1729 N. Halsted Street
Chicago, IL 60614

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Details
  • Price Range: $$$
    Atmosphere: Eclectic, Modern, Romantic
  • Dress Code: Smart Casual
    Good For: Foodies, Hot Spot, People Watching
  • Noise Level: Average
  • Wine Spirits: Full Bar
    Phone: (312) 337-6070
  • Private Dining Room: No