Chez Joel
Chez Joel

Chez Joel

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.chezjoelbistro.com/
  • Phone: 3122266479
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch:
    Tuesday - Saturday: 11:00AM to 4:00PM
    Dinner:
    Tuesday - Thursday: 4:00PM to 10:00PM
    Friday & Saturday: 4:30PM to 11:00PM
    Sunday: 3:00PM to 9:00PM
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: French
  • Executive Chef: Joel Kazouini
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Beer, Cafe, Full Bar, High Tea, Non-Smoking Area, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Private Room, Takeout, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Special Events: Please Join us for New Year's Eve 2 Hours four course price fix menu $75 Glass of Sparkling and Party Favors

Getting there

  • Public Transit: Racine Blue line..Taylor bus, Number 8 Halsted bus.
  • Parking: Valet
A word from Chez Joel
In the midst of Little Italy, Chez Joel creates the tastes and aromas of France. Featuring traditional favorites, Chef joel Kazouini offers his straightforward, expertly prepared Southern French cuisine. Chez Joel’s atmosphere is reminiscent of a true French bistro; its walls adorned with French posters and tables covered with butcher paper. The cozy environment makes Chez Joel the perfect spot for any romantic meal, and when weather permits, garden tables offer an open-air experience where you’ll find one of the most divine al fresco dining settings in the city.
Continued
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFrench
Chez Joel reviews from OpenTable diners
123 reviews since May 20, 2014
Overall Rating4.5
  • Food4.5
    Service4.5
  • Ambiance4.5
    Noise LevelModerate
93% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (88)romantic (74)great for outdoor dining (69)special occasion (61)fit for foodies (47)notable wine list (26)great for lunch (21)great for brunch (12)good for groups (8)scenic view (7)late-night find (6)kid-friendly (4)hot spot (3)vibrant bar scene (1)Show More
  • French in an Italian Neighborhood
    LoriKVIP
    Dined on 6/12/2014
    We love Chez Joel. Tucked away in Little Italy on Taylor Street, surrounded by Italian restaurants, you find Chez Joel. Food is very good and very Bistro French. Great atmosphere! Menu is varied but something for everyone. Would say for everyone to give it a try!! Valet Parking and a nice wine list!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • so glad we found this place
    great
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    we love it! we have been here twice this month to enjoy the outdoor garden and are so happy we found it! Chez Joel is a gem in Little Italy and we will definitely be back!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Date night!
    JasonP
    Dined on 6/7/2014
    My partner and I have been to Chez Joel 4 times in the past 3 months. Having recently moved to this area of the city and dining at the local restaurants, Chez Joel has most certainly become one of our favorites for consistency in food and service. It's one of those restaurants that every time I dine I make a point to try something different..each time never disappointing. It's a frech restaurant with out the french attitude if that makes sense? This past experience I had the halibut special and my partner had the filet mignon. My fish was top notch and I didn't want the last bite to be the last bite. The Pear-is martini is a must-have as well! Service is very good..can be a bit slow when at full capacity..but hey..who cares!
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Such a great place
    LSFChicGo
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    Wonderful food, great server, loved every minute. Had their beet salad and kobia fish special and both were delicious. Can't go wrong with steak either. The apple tart for dessert and the profiteroles were great too.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A real find
    MichaelKVIP
    Dined on 6/5/2014
    Chez Joel was recommended to us by a colleague who lives and works in Chicago. We do not. This was our second trip in as many months to Chez Joel -- all three of us liked it that much. It is a wonderful neighborhood restaurant with French bistro food that matches many more expensive, fancier restaurants. We will have one more trip to Chicago for work in July -- we will return to this fabulous little place. This visit the restaurant was serving outdoors as well as in. We had not seen the outdoors on the first visit. It is a welcoming space.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 6/4/2014
    The food was fine but the service was poor. The restaurant was not busy - we had to ask and wait for a long time for extra bread. There was no reason given for the wait and there weren't many guests so we couldn't understand the problem.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • new neighborhood favorite
    jess
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    i've been meaning to try this place for awhile and finally did last saturday. my mom was in town visiting my sister & i. we had a late lunch elsewhere, so dinner reservations were at 8:30 pm. i wasn't very hungry and it had been a long day, so we didn't order wine or the whole works. just an entree (and i had an appetizer + salad). then dessert, of course. all so so so incredibly tasty, high quality. the people are very pleasant (even when i ordered just water!). creme brulee is to-die-for, along with the apple tart. scallops = awesome. seafood pasta = awesome. salads = awesome. my new neighborhood favorite!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Poetry of Place
    Macy
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    I dine there every time I am in Chicago, at least once a year. The staff, both at the bar and tables, treat you like they know you, even if they don't, and the food is reliably good. I am always pleasantly surprised at how much I like a new wine I try; and the educated variety of wines are very reasonably priced. It would take a romantic poet to adequately describe the intimate neighborhood restaurant's comfortable character; to me it just feels exactly right.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent French
    Reviewer
    Dined on 5/31/2014
    A great French bistro. We have dined here twice now and enjoyed coq au vin and steak frites. We really liked it and would definitely recommend a visit. Our waiter was very attentive as well. The outdoor patio was perfect for a warm Saturday evening.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Never disappoints!
    eaterholicVIP
    Dined on 5/30/2014
    Dining al fresco in the patio was extremely pleasant in the beginning of the summer. Wild mushroom soup, caesar salad, grilled salmon, seared ahi tuna, and creme brûlée were all terrific. The cocktails were refreshing too. Very professional service.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • A Real Find
    davidwVIP
    Dined on 5/29/2014
    This restaurant is a bit off the beaten path as it's located in Little Italy, a bit outside the downtown area. But, it's easily accessible on the Blue Line from anywhere in the loop, and well worth the short trip. A friend described this as a "sweet little restaurant" and it's definitely that. The food is excellent, the service is professional, and the restaurant lends itself to good conversation.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 72 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 20, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.5
    • Food4.5
    • Ambiance4.5
    • Service4.4
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • The following 590 reviews are from the Chez Joel reviews archive.
  • Chez Joel
    Satisfried
    Dined on 5/18/2014
    Sea Bass was excellent. Ny Strip Steak haS some grizzle but overall a very pleasant evening
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Terrific Meal
    MichaelKVIP
    Dined on 5/18/2014
    We are visiting from out of town and got a recommendation to try Chez Joel from a Chicago-based friend. What a wonderful recommendation. We will return. Food, service and ambience all were excellent. Except for the English being spoken around us, it felt like a small bistro in Paris. Two of us shared the fabulous coq a vin, and one of us had steak frites. Both entrees were terrific.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Always Lovely!
    Tchur
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    Great neighborhood restaurant with exceptional food and service! I always look forward to dining here; the food is delicious, the staff is professional yet warm, and the setting is cozy and romantic. Great for date night or small, intimate groups. A favorite.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Wonderful find!
    Gubbini
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    I am almost hesitant to recommend Chez Joel. Selfishly, I would like it to remain a secret! We dined here on a Saturday evening. The menu includes classic French cuisine but offers a nice range of options. My husband had steak frites; I had the salmon special although I was sorely tempted to try the bouillabaisse. My husband's steak was a perfect medium rare and the "frites" were slender and crisp, without being over-cooked or over-salted. My salmon was a perfect medium, served over julienned vegetables with fresh peas, brussel sprouts. The scallops appetizer was exceptional; the creme brulee for dessert was creamy and not overly sweet. Service was attentive without being fussy. Ambience allowed for a pleasant conversation. We'll be back!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • My Favorite Restaurant
    Darty
    Dined on 5/17/2014
    This is my favorite restaurant in Chicago! I have been there many times and each time we have had a wonderful meal! The drinks are delicious! The service is great! We brought our friends with there for the first time and they loved it. We each had a different meal and everyone loved their meals thoroughly. Each meal was cooked to perfection and my filet exactly what I asked for. The portions are a perfect amount. The ambience is great for talking in a relaxing, quaint atmosphere. I can't wait to go back and sit on the beautiful patio!! Thank you Chez Joel for a wonderful meal!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great French bistrot food
    shanghaijb
    Dined on 5/16/2014
    Went for dinner for 2. Ordered the snails as a starter. I hadn't had snails in a long time and was quite pleased with them. The duck breast and confit dish was good, even though the duck breast was disappointing: it was tiny and very chewy. However the duck confit was well prepared and the sides that came with that dish were well done. Service was very attentive and caring. The restaurant atmosphere is cozy and feels like a Parisian home. Overall, we had a very good time, prices were fair, and we will definitely go again.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • One of the best in Chicago
    RonneVIP
    Dined on 5/15/2014
    I go here often, for lunch and for dinner - never have a bad meal. When I take people who have never been, they are amazed that they ever heard of this terrific place. Superior service.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Enjoyable
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 5/9/2014
    Went with my girl friend and we absolutely loved it, will definitely be going back. We had the Lamb, and the butternut squash ravioli, both were incredible. For appetizers we enjoyed the pate, and escargot. Again, both were very good.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • First visit
    drsax55
    Dined on 5/9/2014
    My family and I were celebrating my son's graduation from Loyola University-Chicago and Chez Joel turned out to be an excellent find, and an excellent choice. We appreciated the personable service from the start and that continued through dessert, when Alek was presented a personal creme brulee, with a candle. We began with the house Manhattans for appetizers and salad, including the daily special of roasted beets. We were then directed by our server to a wine that complemented our varied entrees - fish, duck, and two different lamb dishes. The entire meal was delicious, and the service from multiple staff was accommodating and not overly solicitous, making for a perfect celebration of a momentous event in our family.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent choice
    Jps100
    Dined on 5/9/2014
    Great food and service. I have a minor hearing problem so thought it was a little noisy
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Old favorite
    noname
    Dined on 5/7/2014
    I have been to Chez Joel many times and it is always a pleasure. Pretty, cozy setting, appealing presentation, great food, friendly knowledgeable staff. And so French!!
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delicious!
    Hibicue
    Dined on 5/3/2014
    One of the most pleasing dining experiences. The food was so rich and delicious and the service was wonderful. Can't wait to come back!
    Special Features:
    Great for Brunch, Romantic, special occasion, Great for Lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best anniversary ever!!
    CstacyVIP
    Dined on 4/22/2014
    We went here to celebrate our anniversary and it was wonderful! Food was great and we were treated very special! It's our go to place for great food and to celebrate special events.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Coq au Vin
    CPCyVIP
    Dined on 4/18/2014
    The Coq au Vin prepared in the classica tradition was excellent!
    Special Features:
    Fit For Foodies, Romantic, special occasion, Great for Lunch, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • excellent food and service
    Emily
    Dined on 4/12/2014
    The food was delicious and uncomplicated. The wine list is short, but has many good bottles to choose from. Great service.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • perfect
    flint
    Dined on 4/5/2014
    one of the best dining experiences I've ever had. The waiter service: the ambiance everything about it was perfect for a date night.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A Jewel on Taylor
    JillVIP
    Dined on 4/4/2014
    We were looking for a spot to fine before the Bulls game. Saw Chez Joel on Chicago's Best and decided to give it a try. Food was very good. Everything cooked to perfection. Great service and lovely bottle of champagne to go with our meal. Great experience and looking forward to returning again soon. Prices are very reasonable for the quality of food offered.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Cool little bistro.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 4/4/2014
    My wife and I enjoyed the excellent food from the mushroom soup and beet salad to the bouillabaisse and filet mignon. Dessert was also wonderful (crème brulee and almond gateau.) Service was very good, ambiance made us feel we were back in Paris. A real gem.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Cozy French
    Canelle
    Dined on 4/2/2014
    A comfortable small French spot on Italian Taylor street. Had an excellent filet mignon. Husband wishes he had ordered mine. He had other steak on menu which was just average. The brie appetizer was just ok. Crème brûlée very good. Nice lighting. Easy to converse quietly even after a big group came in. Very pleasant.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A great choice for a nice date
    munchie
    Dined on 3/29/2014
    Great date spot! Food, service and wine was a delight.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Chez Joel at it's best!
    goodtimes
    Dined on 3/29/2014
    Chez Joel is a great dining experience. The food was amazing, service great, and the ambience was great! We had been there 3 times before-this by far was the best!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Very Good Authentic French Cuisine!
    tchellim
    Dined on 3/26/2014
    Mussels were outstanding . . as was the Pate! Beef was perfectly done. Would recommend for good french cuisine
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Still excellent!
    hlchica
    Dined on 3/23/2014
    What is there to say, but that the food, service, and ambience are very good to excellent?--This is a French bistro *par excellence*--a wonderful place to eat.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • We have been frequent diners
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 3/18/2014
    We have been frequent diners at Chez Joel and were never disappointed in the food quality or service. Last Tuesday the noise level was abnormally high as a large group of diners were extremely loud, an unfortunate thing that is out of the control of the restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • a little dip in service
    mkchicago
    Dined on 3/18/2014
    Food was excellent as always. But service left a bit wanting. Our server seemed to forget about us for oh, about 20 minutes or so. At first I thought he was being sensitive to our "catching up" with each other, but then....when he was buzzing around tables adjacent, didn't know what to make of it. I did toast my friend's bday, which led to an unsolicited celebratory dessert, so he gets props for that. But overall, the service was not what I have had on previous visits. Again, food was EXCELLENT.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Spot
    dinnerpals
    Dined on 3/5/2014
    Reasonable pricing, good food, cozy atmosphere. Menu has a nice variety for all tastes.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Ravioli au Courge to Die for
    ChicagoC
    Dined on 2/25/2014
    My husband took me to Chez Joel on the weeknight of my birthday. Surprisingly got to speak some French with the host, wait staff were polite and helpful. We ordered the scallops (like eating delicious clouds), the broccoli puree (decent), the salmon (damn good) and the ravioli au courge (so delicious we had to send our compliments to the chef twice before leaving). Complimentary birthday glass of ice cream and strawberries - a simple and kind gesture.
    Special Features:
    romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • AMAZING!
    etaylormcpVIP
    Dined on 2/22/2014
    I cannot say enough about Chez Joel. The food was wonderful, the service was the best I have had in a very long time, and the pricing was very reasonable for this kind of experience. Chez Joel is at the top of my recent finds in Chicago and I will be returning as often as possible. Absolutely wonderful experience. My wife is vegetarian and I am an alpha carnivore. It is hard to find places where we both have a truly fantastic experience. Chez Joel definitely worked in that regard the Risotto was amazing for her and I of course had a steak and frites. We paired the cheese plate which was wonderful with the Semillon it was perfect. I can't think of a better place for "date night".
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good bistro
    shuvalkin
    Dined on 2/21/2014
    Afficianados of low key French bistros will be happy with Cez Joel. Those who don't have a lot of experience with French bistros will probably want to know that the atmosphere is classy and intimate... a good place for quiet conversations over some very well prepared standards of French cuisine. Good place for a casual (but classy) meal, a date, or renewing acquaintance with an old friend from out of town.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list, romantic, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.