R J Grunt's
R J Grunt's

R J Grunt's

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.rjgruntschicago.com/
  • Phone: (773) 929-5363
  • Hours of Operation:
    Monday - Friday: 11:30am to Midnight
    Saturday: 10:00am to Midnight
    Sunday: 10:00am to 9:00pm
    Brunch Saturday and Sunday 10:00 to 2:00pm
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: American
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Delivery, Full Bar, Late Night, Takeout, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Dickens
  • Parking: Valet
A word from R J Grunt's
The first Lettuce Entertain You restaurant, Grunts still exudes the funky, devil-may-care lifestyle of the 70s in its style, décor, music, and menu. Happily for all of us, the best eating of that day continues to be some of the best today.

While there"s a huge menu that's as much fun to eat your way through as it is to read, many of Grunts' old favorites spark return visits. The burgers are arguably the best in town. The salad bar boasts more than 50 ingredients daily. Giant malts and milkshakes are hand scooped and come in a rainbow of favors. Oh! Don't forget the barbecued baby back ribs and pulled pork sandwiches!
Continued
Foodspotting photos
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerKid Friendly
R J Grunt's reviews from OpenTable diners
133 reviews since July 30, 2014
Overall Rating3.9
  • Food3.9
    Service4
  • Ambiance3.6
    Noise LevelEnergetic
94% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (87)kid-friendly (62)great for lunch (55)good for groups (34)great for brunch (24)fit for foodies (18)late-night find (16)hot spot (14)special occasion (7)scenic view (7)romantic (3)vibrant bar scene (2)Show More
  • Wonderful food and wonderful music
    HappyDinerVIP
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    I love R J Grunts for the salad bar, great burgers and great music. Always a fun night!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Decent
    GoldCoaster
    Dined on 11/22/2014
    After all of the hype over the salad bar, I was prepared for something incredible. I must say that, while the salad bar was good, it wasn't above and beyond what you see at any local grocery store.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Emily
    Dined on 11/19/2014
    The food was great and the service was attentive and very friendly. We wanted to order everything on the menu!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great spot by Lincoln Park
    Chiefs1970
    Dined on 11/8/2014
    Located on Lincoln Park West, R.J. Grunts is a long time favorite of ours when we travel from Tulsa to Chicago. It is known for it's expansive salad bar, but by my family by it's great shakes and wraps, R J Grunt's delivers a festive atmosphere in a cozy setting nestled between Clark on the west and the park just outside it's doors. Valet parking is available and a good fact in winter is that it's soup is priced by temperature so a good cold day in Chicago may find you with soup for twenty cents!
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • great burger
    cheezynonkVIP
    Dined on 11/7/2014
    They're known for their salad bar and burgers and it lived up to expectations.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, hot spot, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Track
    Dined on 11/7/2014
    This was my first time at RJ Grunts and will be back. Bar is small and our crew of 8 filled it pretty quickly. The seating was a little tight but it worked. Everybody enjoyed their food and the salad bar was a big hit.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Not open and no warning.
    Mrj908VIP
    Dined on 11/2/2014
    We had an 11am reservation. When we got to the restaurant, we were informed that their power had gone out and they weren't open. That's fine, I understand that it happens, but why did they not call me and explain the situation?!? We had someone coming in from the suburbs and this was an inconvenience for everyone involved.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • same as it ever was
    Cooler
    Dined on 11/1/2014
    Been coming here since it opened in June 1971. I just graduated high school and we ended up at Grunts. It was pretty revolutionary back then with its salad bar, young, attractive waitresses and kooky menu. It is now somewhat retro, but that it is good. The food is always good, the drinks too. When I come here, I go back to those days, but also think this place is still a great place to go.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Burger? Yes, Please!
    mizlaraVIP
    Dined on 10/25/2014
    Best burger in town, hands down! The service is OTT awesome, too. I love coming here. Note to all prospective diners- make a reservation or you will have to wait quite a bit. Yeah, the food is that good, but the dining space is small. Since it's close to the zoo, there are a lot of families and small children. That being said, it's always going to be loud and you will be super close to your neighboring tables.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Disappointed
    Gourmand
    Dined on 10/19/2014
    I took my father here for his 55th birthday, and it was not a very memorable occasion. Our waitress was very forgetful, the bus boy took my father's plate way before he finished eating, the hostess placed a table of 6 so close to us we could have been part of their party, they (waitress/hostess) forgot it was my father's birthday even though I mentioned it through open table, and the salad bar was gross (it seemed like no one cleaned it for a while). In sum, I won't return to this place.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Always delicious!
    jhearlston
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Love the salad bar and menu. I've been here several times & I always have a great meal and great time!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Marits
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    RJ Grunts is still as fabulous now as it was when it first opened. Great food, great wait staff, great atmosphere
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • fun/lively
    buckeyegirlVIP
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Salad bar has nice healthy options but not sure its worth $15 unless you go up several times
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for lunch, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always good food...
    MichaelVIP
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    Salad bar for lunch is never a miss at RJ Grunts. Great Lincoln Park neighborhood restaurant...
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • stop messing with my restaurant!
    burgersRme
    Dined on 10/6/2014
    I've loved this restaurant for years and was one of those who yelled and screamed when they threatened to close it. But now it seems they are taking me for granted. They changed the "fries", they took them away, then they brought them back but upcharged for the real ones, the burgers are smaller than the buns (or did they get bigger buns???). Of all people Mr. Melman - you should know...don't mess with success! Leave my restaurant alone and go mess with some foie gras lollie pops!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch, kid-friendly, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • year after year, a go to place
    FresserVIP
    Dined on 10/5/2014
    Consistently good, reliable and reasonably priced. One of the few "nice"places for a family get together. I am so glad it's there.....
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Decent, but unremarkable
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Burgers were decent, but nothing special. Not a $13-14 burger in my opinion.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Hamburgers
    Blueaspen
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Very disappointed in my hamburger. Sure it was a frozen patty with no juice. Flavor was just ok. Sweet potatoe fries were excellent. The bun on the burger rivals Burger King. For a 90 tab - 3 burgers and 5 beers total not sure if I round visit again.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
  • The Charm is Gone
    Turtle2010
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    RJ Grunts used to be a fantastic Lettuce Entertain You spot. It had unique charm and decent neighborhood-type food. At one time, it had the best (and only) salad bar in town. Sadly, it has declined and crawled into a hole. The salad bar had only the basics - no longer the yummy, unique treats it once offered - and the chopped liver was spoiled. The breakfast bar for the weekend brunch had good options but the items had been sitting out far too long - even the eggs had developed a crusty layer. Such a disappointment considering the high quality and consistency of the other Lettuce spots.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Classic on the park - bad wine list
    bkchicagoVIP
    Dined on 9/24/2014
    The burgers and shakes are terrific and the salad bar a nice throw-back. Service is terrific. Grunt's has always had a terrible wine list though and it's still bad -- now the menu doesn't even have vineyard names. Wine lists and pricing have always been an LEYE weakness, strangely (based on 20+ years of observation). Children's chicken was also mushy tempura style - bad.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • paesan1218
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    Cool legendary place with delicious food and great ambiance!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Still good after all these years!!!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/9/2014
    I was last at this restaurant in the middle 80s and it was fun back then and it is still fun today. The food was very good and the service was excellent!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, scenic view, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Just another burger joint
    sfcvargasmp
    Dined on 9/1/2014
    We went to RJ Grunts expecting to be blown away by their burgers. Though the burger was ok it wasn't mind blowing. The ambiance is good if you like an older almost stuck in the 70's decor. Overall the service was great but the food was just ok.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Not Worth It!
    TrixieVIP
    Dined on 8/31/2014
    Service was awful - this is a buffet, and we never saw our waitress - never got clean plates so we used the same ones (is this a health issue - should the Board of Health be notified?) we had - my friend was never offered a refill on her drink, no coffee, etc. We got there very early on a Sunday morning so it was not crowded - no excuse. Not worth the money, go somewhere else.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Tourist stop
    cornbredVIP
    Dined on 8/30/2014
    I took my visiting family of picky eaters here after the zoo and before Second City. Everything was good, but nothing was amazing. The best part, according to my mom and her sisters, was the 70s music. RJ Grunts is a good stop for non-adventurous eaters and tourists.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Good food! Good service!
    Foodie
    Dined on 8/25/2014
    The burger is delicious, so are the shakes. Portions are huge. Our server was excellent. Would love to go back.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Salad bar
    ChicagoFoodLord
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    The only reason I love coming here is for the salad bar. The food is pretty standard but I'm a sucker for a salad bar. Tables are crammed in unless you get seated in a booth by the window. The salad bar is on top of other diners, much like being at relatives house for Christmas Eve dinner with all the foldable tables and chairs brought up from the basement and crudely placed around the room. You might have to throw a few elbows just to get your salad back to the table. Waitresses are always super friendy but can sometimes be painfully slow, or they just feel slow because the food comes out in lighting speed. Overall I would only come here if you have kids, are a die hard salad fan, or just want a burger and a shake.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Staff
    TrixieVIP
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    The "hostess" had the personality and charm of lava rock (no offense to lava rock)-nothing like getting an attitude as soon as you walk in the door at 10:00am. I then sat at the table a full ten minutes before the waitress showed up - I literally was about to walk out (there were very few people in the restaurant) when she came by - to her credit, she was very sweet - however, she was a rare sighting. The food is very good for what you are getting - this place loses points because of the staff's attitude and lack of attention to its clients.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Neighborhood Eatery
    Nora
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    The burger was very good, I had the Yowza burger and my son had the cheese burger. My fries were so salty, so I couldn't really enjoy them. I loved the shake and the atmosphere was friendly. It was especially cold, so I was a bit preoccupied with the temperature. Good thing I bought a sweater! The comfortable relaxed environment would bring me back again. Although I didn't have the salad bar, it looked scrumptious.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • good food and the air show too
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 8/15/2014
    We brought friends with us who had never been to RJ's. We scored a window table. Recommend the French Dip and the salad bar. We could see planes on the lakefront practicing for the air show. While waiting for the valet to retrieve our car the Blue Angels were everywhere above us ... such a wonderful sight with thundering sounds.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Summer Lunch at Grunts
    LLChicagoVIP
    Dined on 8/14/2014
    On a Friday summer afternoon, the restaurant was full and lively. Outside was a row of baby strollers since many mothers came for lunch with their toddlers and young children. The food is primarily a throw-back. The salad bar is still available -- not $15 if ordered as an entree. Most of the sandwich offerings are hamburgers or chicken. Not many light lunch selections or vegetarian options. The guacamole was disappointing.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2011VIP
    Dined on 8/10/2014
    Hostess was very rude about us having 1 extra person no accounted for in our reservation.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Noise Level
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 8/4/2014
    Hi - one of my favorite spots, but unfortunately there was a family next to us w little kids who were misbehaving, and also the adults were really loud - so it was difficult to have a conversation at our table. I am used to loud spots, but these adults were almost worse than the kids and I would have thought the wait staff should have asked them to not scream so much....in a polite, respectful way of course - the family was having a fun time and I do not think they realized how loud they had gotten.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • just like a busy home
    optimist
    Dined on 8/4/2014
    I've been here before, but this was the first time I came on a Monday evening. The boyfriend had the Gruntburger, I had fish tacos. As ever, the food was very good and fairly priced. Tacos were very yummy. The ambience is busy and sort of loud but in a fun way. Music is all the best 60's-80's pop. Servers are business-like but cheerful. Salad bar is dreamy and you can even get dessert from it-cream cheese with cinnamon, dried fruits, and nuts. Drinks are basic but always good and not over-priced. I just like coming here-especially if the work day was long and I feel out of sorts. By the time I leave I always feel better. Nice for kids-if you share their food. Large portions.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • enjoyed
    maurice
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    old time favorite. Great Patty melt Hadn't been in a long time but did not dissapoint
    Special Features:
    late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • great place for family
    chuckieVIP
    Dined on 8/2/2014
    Brought kids to place wife and I used to go to. Food as great as always. Kid friendly atmosphere and good kids menu too.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ruined by overcrowding
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 7/31/2014
    We frequented RJG's yrs ago. Went back after LPZoo as locale & casual vibe are perfect for that. But table placement is ridiculous, esp in the back center, which can only be termed a "death trap." I was literally stuck in my chair between a post, another table and a chair at a 3rd table. Were exiled there after checking in early for reservation;then food was so slow server offered free salad bar. Of course food came just as we got to the SB (but food was delicious, esp burgers.) Top it off with reporting us as "no show" to OpenTable and it's doubtful we'll ever go back. But we'll surely refuse to sit at those awful tables if we do -- and you should, too.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Grunting Good
    SonnyD
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    The food here is very tasty and well prepared. That being said it is mostly bar food, (Burgers, sandwiches, fried foods) although they do have a salad bar which seems popular although we did not try it. I would go back when in the mood for this type of fare.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 95 ratings-only reviews submitted since July 30, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.9
    • Food3.9
    • Ambiance3.7
    • Service4
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The following 669 reviews are from the R J Grunt's reviews archive.
  • Lack of Service
    TrixieVIP
    Dined on 7/27/2014
    Great place for brunch - but this is the second time we were ignored by our waitress. The place was empty, yet I began to wonder if she was on the endangered species list.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • RJ Grunts Good but not Great
    consistant
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    This restaurant has way too many tables in a small space. I asked for a booth but was put at a table near the back where 4 tables were smashed together. My 18 year old daughter could not get up to go to the salad bar without asking someone at another table to get up so she could get out. It was very uncomfortable for everyone. Also, the service was slow for my son's burger. Luckily, I used a gift card to help pay the bill as the prices are very high and not sure they are worth it. $14 for a salad bar at lunch is way too much and $12 for a not great burger is way too much to pay. I also thought our server did the best he could but he had way too many tables which resulted in a lot of waiting.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic