The Dawson

4.7
1199 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
The gathering place in Fulton River District, The Dawson features globally-inspired American cuisine and libations, that highlight the season's best offerings and diverse, yet approachable, ingredients and flavors. Known for its passion for creating inventive and award-winning cocktails and house made liquor infusions and syrups, the team at The Dawson specializes in libations with whimsical touches.

Acclaimed items and guest favorites include: Chicken-fried Lobster Tail, Bone-in Ribeye, Dawson Burger, Mac & Cheese, Bloody Mary, and featured Fish Tacos.

A nod to the contiguous Dawson Brothers Fireplace Plant of late 19th century Chicago, The Dawson's interior design draws inspiration from the history of the neighborhood and the industrial innovation of that era and offers an artfully stripped-down aesthetic, highlighting natural and reclaimed materials in unexpected ways throughout the establishment.
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Private dining
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
American, Bar / Lounge / Bottle Service, Farm-to-table
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Hours of operation
Monday: 4:30pm - 11:00pm (Kitchen 10:00pm)
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday: 4:30pm - Midnight (Kitchen 11:00pm)
Friday: 4:00pm - 1:30am (Kitchen Midnight)
Saturday: 10:30am - 1:30am (Kitchen Midnight)
Sunday: 10:30am - 11:00pm (Kitchen 10:00pm)

BRUNCH:
10:30am - 3:00pm Saturday and Sunday
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Phone number
(312) 243-8955
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Smart Casual
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Grand Avenue and Halsted Street at the Grand/Halsted/Milwaukee intersection
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Parking details
Valet parking is available nightly and all day on Sunday. Limited metered street parking is available.
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Public transit
CTA Blue Line - Grand Avenue stop
CTA Bus - Grand Avenue/Halsted Street stop
CTA Bus - Milwaukee Avenue / Halsted Street stop
CTA Bus - Halsted Street / Grand Avenue stop
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Special events & promotions
Private Events Manager
The Dawson
312-372-4001
events@the-dawson.com
Additional
Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Beer Garden, Cocktails, Counter Seating, Fireplace, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Private Dining

The Dawson is the gathering place in Fulton River District for globally-inspired American cuisine, award-winning libations and inviting decor. Featuring multiple spaces on two levels, including an expansive courtyard, The Dawson offers many options and is an event host's dream location.

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What 1199 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.4
service
4.7
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

Mixed reviews - ambience and vibe was cozy and intimate. We had a table on the patio which was super cute with string lights. Cocktails were their strong suit. The food, however, was just okay. My steak had little no to flavor/crust and the brussel sprouts were pretty hard and difficult to eat. The chicken fried lobster had great flavor but it was just two super tiny pieces. Nothing that made us say wow or want to rush back here again.

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KA
1 review
Dined 7 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Always love Dawson but disappointed they advertised on their website Camp Sunday sept 16th and it was cxld. Went there for the music.

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OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The patio is a lovely place to brunch. Aside from the occasional city sounds, it was a very relaxing and peaceful ambience. The host was also very friendly and helpful. She checked my bags for me which was appreciated after traveling and lugging it around all morning. The bloody Marys and lox were amazing as well. Great brunch all around!

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e
Chicago
26 reviews
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

Always a favorite before but finding it to be the same menu for food and the drink menu not as interesting. : /

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CA
Chicago
71 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Fun vibe, tasty food. Outdoor area was wonderful for one of the last summer evenings for outdoor eating. Looks like they have heat lamps though so we’ll see if we can eat outside in the fall too. Burger was juicy, Branzino was cooked perfectly (although the waiter should have offered to filet it for me), steak frites was flavorful but tough.

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RS
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had about 8 people in my party. Waiter was very attentive. Great food and ambience

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PD
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brunch is always so good! I had the avacado toast! Been there a handful of times. It's one of my favorite outdoor patio spots! Great outdoor seating, people watching, cocktails a d great food and music!

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c
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Decent restaurant. Good food, nice patio area. Would go back again.

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t
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved brunch at the Dawson. The coffee and cinnamon sticky bun was outstanding- and you can’t beat the patio vibes.

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MS
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 2ambience 5

Amazing food and ambiance. Elote corn and fries are a must. Service was a bit slow however

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Service was incredible

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p
Chicago
1 review
Dined on September 5, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The food was pricey but beat our expectations! We got corn ravioli and sausages.

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n
Orange County
6 reviews
Dined on September 4, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 3

Food is ordinary and overpriced for the type of entries you will get. Multiple restaurants in Chicago. Keep searching.

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OT
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great server. I think her name is Monica. Know her stuff

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BT
Phoenix
23 reviews
Dined on August 27, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Appetizer and entrees were excellent. The server was very friendly and on top of things. Desert was just ok and the pour on alcohol was very measured, e.g. exactly 2 ounces.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server Troy was outstanding!

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L
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Mart
Our server
Was outstanding! We had an awesome nite

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great experience. Host was also great

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AF
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere with excellent craft cocktails and fantastic service. Had the halibut and it was to die for! Highly recommended by a local and it didn’t disappoint!

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m
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

The Dawson was a perfect location for lunch. The outdoor patio is amazing and the service was great. The food was delicious and the atmosphere was very laid back. We will definitely be returning.

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EC
Chicago
37 reviews
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

Love the ambiance here. Our hostess , bartender and waitress were all very helpful and friendly I just didn’t love the food. In fact our whole table said the same. Nothing was omg delish and memorable. We went for dinner so brunch may be different. I’d probably go back for drinks but definitely not dinner.

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l
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing culinary experience!! They have a beautiful outside patio, a wide variety of creative libations, great tasting food and wonderful service! Highly recommended

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OT
Philadelphia
2 reviews
Dined on August 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We love this spot, and have been here multiple times. This time however, they went above and beyond in their customer service. We requested to move tables after we had been there for a bit (and with a baby stroller). With relative ease and accommodation, they quickly moved us in a very seamless manner. The manager and wait staff were tremendous. Not to mention the branzino was fabulous!

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KY
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 19, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Food was better than expected based on other reviews. Seafood was the best part of the menu from tuna ceviche to red fish tacos. Service and ambiance was great outside on the patio. A little loud but it was a lively and energetic atmosphere. Prices seemed a bit high but overall solid warm-weather dining option. We will go again!

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a
Chicago
10 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great service, cool patio and interesting menu items. Probably should have ordered more food because we left hungry as portion sizes are small. Everything we did have tasted amazing (chicken fried lobster and sea scallops).

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M
Chicago
80 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 3

Have been to the restaurant many times before but the service was poor and the doors to the outside were open making it muggy and gnats we’re flying all around! The reddish tacos were great but not for that price! The pork chop has lost it’s amazing amazing status since it is no longer brined with the previous ingredients that took 24 hours! Just not as pleased. And I had a really tough out of town crowd to please and they were not!

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OT
Chicago
9 reviews
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 5food 2service 5ambience 5

Doesn’t have a lot off option for brunch menu. It’s ok for taste.

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OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 4

Great place for a date or catch up with friends.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 14, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 5

I arrived at The Dawson after seeing such high ratings all over the internet and was expecting something extravagant. The ambiance and outdoor seating area was definitely great but the food was lackluster to say the least. Considering the price of our bill (for 4 people) and all the great reviews I’ve read, I expected WAY better. $50+ steak had a few leaves of undressed arugula on top and tasted like something I could easily grill at home— it was bland and only had a tiny spoonful of sauce on top, not to mention that the meal was just a plain old steak on a plate with absolutely nothing on the side. Scallops were bland even with the sauce, grilled cauliflower was unseasoned and literally tasted like they just put a big cauli on the grill (sauce under it was decent but the crispy chickpeas tasted borderline burnt), the muscles were “eh”, and the table was too small for us to keep our appetizers long enough for us to really finish before our entrees were ready. Moscow mule was also subpar. For the price I believe there is way better and I was hoping to get more out of my experience. The service was also pretty average. Overall, not a great experience and don’t think I’d ever go back.

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T
Chicago
31 reviews
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

The Dawson is beautiful, and the food was great. We had the fish tacos, the burratta, and a wonderful salad with smoked feta, to start. For entrees, the cavatelli was really good, and filling, as was the corn ravioli, and fried chicken. We will be visiting again.

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OT
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Great ambiance

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 12, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Beautiful outdoor space. Great food and drinks

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PP
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Ate outside on patio, the chicken fired lobster and redfish tacos were excellent also the Mai Ti's :)

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OT
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 1ambience 4

To start the hostess tried to seat my family and I at a table inside although my reservation clearly asked for an outside table and there were plenty of tables available. After saying that I rather wait than seat inside she took us to our table in the patio. The service started well but it declined as the place got crowded and it didn’t happen to us but two tables beside us got their orders wrong. Food was good but nothing outstanding. Burguer lacked of seasoning. The fries were really good.

At the end the server offered us a couple of shots as courtesy but that didn’t help make over for the OK experience.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Loved the night at the Dawson. I’ve been there before several times and it’s one of my favorite places. Also, has to be one of Chicago’s best outdoor dining experiences. We had a blast. Thanks everyone.

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LL
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on August 8, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The ambiance was wonderful and I appreciated the fabulous service. The food was delicious. However, the portions are incredibly tiny for a very high value. You're looking at ~$25-$50 per dish that comes in a portion size that would fit a small plate.

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D
Chicago
46 reviews
Dined on August 6, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 4

Went for the Sunday night Camp experience. It was nothing but a different menu with a hot dog & grilled cheese. Online they make it seem like this totally New concept where the "guidance counselors" - aka servers, guide you through the menu & experience.. none of this happened. Service was shotty at best. The brussel sprouts were terribly undercooked & barely warm as was our elote corn cob which had to be taken back to heat, (per request by the server when dropping it off!) The chicken fried lobster was good as was the cauliflower but there was nothing that stood out. Just a very mediocre experience in a lovely outdoor setting. The outdoor patio is their redemption in my opinion.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on August 5, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Girls brunch, food, drinks and ambiance were perfect for our get together

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J
Chicago
19 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 2ambience 2

Totally my fault, but I was hoping to have a romantic dinner with my husband. It was SO loud that romance was impossible. The place seems great for friends' get together, but not for a date/special occasion. We had a ribeye and scallops, for the price I felt like I could have just prepared dinner at home, not terrible but not "noteworthy" either. I think if I return I would sit at the bar, table service was slow and somewhat lackluster.

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OT
Las Vegas
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome service and the food was amazing!!!

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