Bar Biscay

4.6
198 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Seafood
The Bay of Biscay, aptly named for the Basque peoples who have inhabited and fished the waters for several millennium is a rich, pastoral land open to a wild coastline, brimming over with the stuff of food-lovers’ dreams. The Basque approach to cooking -- unfussy, yet insistently demanding only the best ingredients -- is our inspiration. Chef Johnny Anderes and his team cook food simply, allowing ingredients to shine in a direct way. We encourage you to relax, put down your phone, & enjoy your company. Good music will be playing, with good things to drink. Hopefully you're sitting with someone you care a great deal about, and when it comes time to leave, we hope you feel better about the world and your place in it. Topa!

No outside food or drink is allowed. We're surprised we even have to say that, to be honest.
What 198 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
88% of people would recommend it to a friend
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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Good but uninspiring

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l
Chicago
18 reviews
Dined on July 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place is amazing!

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TS
1 review
Dined on July 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It is a lovely place! The food is excellent, as well as the service and the environment. We will definitely go back.

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OT
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on June 28, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic!!!

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JJ
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on June 26, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Interesting choices of Basque cuisine that you're hard pressed to find elsewhere.

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MM
1 review
Dined on June 18, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a wonderful dining experience! Everything we had was delicious! The wild mushrooms w/soft egg,
chorizo toast, sausage stuffed piquillos and the whitefish were some of our favorites.
Our server Yahir was helpful, knowledgeable and a pleasure to engage with. Will certainly be back.

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RW
1 review
Dined on June 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Bar Biscay was an awesome dining experience! Chef Johnnie and staff were very pleasant and extremely professional. We had dinner at the chef’s counter and the food was beyond delicious. AJ and Ray were precise, focused, and you always thought that they just had a love of food. Watching the preparation and the skill in the kitchen was just FUN! The wine pairings were spot on! Taron was very knowledgeable on the wines. No detail was missed. We felt very welcomed and would definitely return and bring tons of people! Thank you for your hospitality. Loved Bar Biscay!

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing service at the bar with Archie and friends. Make sure to ask for Singani 63. Cheers

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OT
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on May 18, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

We did the chefs experience sitting close to the kitchen. The interaction with the staff and chef was truly an “experience”. The food and wine pairings allowed for us to try things we may not have tasted otherwise.

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VS
Chicago
8 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

For 5 of us. I don't think we ate or drank too much but our bill was north of $300. For the level of quality, it was definitely not worth it. It's over-priced and nothing to write home about. I really tried to catch it before they closed, which many places in this are tend to do.

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MM
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on May 12, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Food was good and the service was excellent. We enjoyed all the dishes we ate. My only concern is that the value is not there. Each dish felt overpriced by about 30%. Roasted mushrooms should not be an $18 appetizer. An asparagus gratin with 4 spears of white asparagus was $15. Also, on the day we went (Mother's Day) the prices were all higher than the what the menu on their website advertises. A pet peeve of mine. So, while the food was tasty, be prepared to feel like you've overspent for what you ate.

Bar Biscay
Responded on May 15, 2019

Hi Meg, Our Chef wanted me to let you know that we use small independent farmers with high quality ingredients. Our farm eggs are 50 cents a piece, the wild mushrooms are $12 a pound at raw weight. Once the mushrooms are trimmed the plate still gets 8 ounces of trimmed mushrooms. The large asparagus spears cost us $3 per spear. You are definitely getting your monies worth & supporting small famers with every bite. Margins in this business are slim & we would never over charge our customers.

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EO
1 review
Dined on May 11, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 5

Terrible service. Couldn't get another round of drinks for our table of five, couldn't get more toasts (ordered twice, it never showed up) and TOO MANY FIDDLEHEADS WITH EVERYTHING. Not worth t he price.

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a
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Our visit to Bar Biscay was such a pleasant change from most of the other new restaurants that have opened recently in Chicago. The interior was simple and casual, but still elegant. Music was upbeat but not deafeningly loud! (for the record, i'm not an elderly person and I like loud music, but when i eat, i like to be able to have a conversation without yelling or straining to hear! thank you bar biscay!) The food was delicious-- neither too rich or nor too salty. Too often restaurants error on the side of rich and salty for every single dish. Bar Biscay was balanced, very well done. I don't have a sweet tooth, but the dessert was a truly wonderful Basque cake. The couple next to us shared the same, and then ordered another piece! Lastly, our server was excellent. Friendly, knew the menu well, had good suggestions for pairings and wine. He really seemed to care enough to make sure were enjoying ourselves.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

LOVED that we could contribute to Cawc And eat the beautiful food in the gorgeous atmosphere that bar biscay is ❣️❣️❣️

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ZG
Phoenix
1 review
Dined on May 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Great food and drinks!

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EB
1 review
Dined on May 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We did the tasting menu for two. We've been to Bar Biscay before and loved the experience of the Chef's Table previously, so we decided to try this different version of date night with other friends. Everything was yummy, except for the dessert (I think it was Chocolate cake?) The cake was so dry, and the butter icing was a little off (it was probably chosen because it was something they needed to get rid of for freshness purposes). I am a sweets addict and previous bakery manager, and after one bite we stopped eating and asked for the dessert menu. My old favorite desserts were the cream puffs, and since they don't have those any more we left without getting a dessert. We left full and happy though, and will continue to come back. I think we'll order from the menu on our next visits, but still glad we tried it.

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JS
Chicago
1 review
Dined on April 26, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We came in for my siblings birthday and the team treated them to a fabulous dessert. They also give great lessons on drinking wine from a porron !

My favorites are always the gougeres, sausage stuffed peppers and squash dish.

Won’t be disappointed when you come here!

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BL
1 review
Dined on April 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It was great! The chef's were really innovative with menu items that could have been served in a traditional way. Also, oysters were great!

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MC
1 review
Dined on April 19, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

Neil, the host, was warm and muy genial. Felt like he welcomed us and wanted us there. He was the best part of the whole evening. Once we were seated, it felt like our server was just trying to sell us things and get us out of there ASAP. It was simply annoying. The charcuterie platter y olivas were muy ricos and we all liked thinly shaved meats, the mustard, y el pan, etc. but it was overpriced as was the extra slice of cheese we added to the platter--what kind of $28 charcuterie platter doesn't include some cheese? When you pay a decent amount for good food, it's a shame when it isn't complimented by stellar service-instead we felt rushed and as if we were taking up someone else's table (though no one was waiting for a table)--unlike in Pays Bascos where you show up at a restaurante and the table is yours for the night, the server takes care of you and you leave feeling like you had a wonderful time with wonderful food and wonderful company! Bar Biscay would do well to take more lessons from their Spanish sisters and brothers...

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t
Chicago
145 reviews
Dined on April 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great time this weekend at Bar Biscay. Great selection of basque style tapas. Stand outs were the razor clams, manchego gougeres and stuffed Piquillo peppers. The house made bacon was over-the-top delicious! Our waiter was outstanding and just loved the entire vibe of this restaurant. Only criticism is that their selection of Spanish reds were lacking and the wine list heavily leaned towards Bordeaux’s.

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Y
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was outstanding!

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on April 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love the place

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l
Chicago
19 reviews
Dined on April 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love this place it's my favorite restaurant in the city!

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PC
Chicago
17 reviews
Dined on April 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Delicious! We had the brandade, monkfish, and

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DJ
Chicago
1 review
Dined on April 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, great service, hip environment, perfect location!

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on March 30, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An unbelievable meal. Chef Johnny compiled a testing menu that was such a lovely balance of flavors and even took my wife’s dietary restrictions into consideration. The staff are all rockstars and truly made the evening something much more than just a meal.

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MJ
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Such amazing food! Everything was perfect.!Probably (definitly) the best mussels ive ever had. Keep up the good work!

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ZL
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on March 29, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Bar Biscay never disappoints for some of the warmest service and most vibrant food and drinks in Chicago. The dining experience from start to finish was simply exceptional.

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RM
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 27, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

Long time wayting

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food and service were terrific

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OT
Chicago
15 reviews
Dined on March 23, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great fun sitting at the chef’s table Saturday night enjoying an amazing 5-course dinner prepared by
Chef Johnny! His sidekick Taryn did a great job serving us and making sure we had everything we needed. We can’t wait to go back. Yummy!

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L
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on March 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Service and good were fabulous! Acoustics were tough.... noisy so hard to have meaningful conversation !
Best wishes!

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P
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service! Festival of unique flavors that are not easy to find. Chill atmosphere to boot.

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OT
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We went late - after theater - so we just got a selection of lots of smaller plates. Everything was delicious and the service was friendly, helpful and efficient. Nice wine too.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Really amazing experience and a great team. We did the chefs table tasting and my wife and I had a wonderful experience. You truly feel special throughout the courses and feel the passion that chef Johnny puts in each course. He makes time to explain each dish and takes time to get to know the customers pállate. One of the best deals we’ve done so far and will be coming back for sure.

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JP
Chicago
1 review
Dined on March 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We just loved it. It was a good find and we are planning to go back.

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AN
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on February 27, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 5

Cool space, pricey food which was good but not excellent. Service was mediocre as waiter seemed annoyed with us. Called ahead to see if they had vegan options and host said yes, but the vegan options were sauteed carrots and squash and a small salad. Waiter seemed perturbed we asked a lot of questions

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N
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on February 24, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food is amazing. The fish has always impressed me. The gougères are the best thing on the menu!

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ML
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on February 23, 2019
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

Overpriced.
1 small slice of cheese = $10.
A tiny (SUPER) tiny miniscule jar with a few mussels = $10.
Bread was not fresh & dry.
Especially for the location we thought it was overpriced...

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DC
Chicago
24 reviews
Dined on February 22, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

We had a terrific experience. The food was outstanding, as was our server. My only complaint (if you call it that) is that the tables are quite close together.

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