The Little Gem Restaurant

4.3
236 reviews
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$30 and under
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Contemporary American
This Intimate, Stylish Little Restaurant is Elegant and Romantic with a Warm and Welcoming Atmosphere. A Relaxed Fine Dining Experience.
Casual or Smart - All Feel At Ease.

Reservations are Recommended - Walkin's are always Welcome.
We look forward to serving you!
What 236 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.2
service
4.5
ambience
4.0
value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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DA
Chicago
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Service was great! Our server was very attentive and charismatic. The drinks and food were delicious. Great vibe and ambiance will definitely make a trip back

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q
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was great although it seemed louder than usual.

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OB
Chicago
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 5

This is one of our favorite restaurants in Oak Park. Good food and many times small ensembles playing music. The last time we were there they were understaffed and the food came in colder than it should be.
We view this as a one-time occurrence and plan to be back and expect the service to be as good as it normally is.

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MT
1 review
Dined on February 11, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The little gem offers a nice variety of food options, from the carnivore to the vegan. It has a nice ambience and is not loud, so you can have a conversation. The nice thing is, there is no televisions and they have live music. We were there on a Sunday and they had a nice jazz duo playing that evening.
There was also a Happy Hour going on, so that was a plus. Overall we had an enjoyable experience and will return.

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JB
Chicago
15 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 5

We were at Gem this Sunday at 1:00pm for brunch.
Food was excellent. Service was terrible. Bus boy ended up taking care of us. He could see what was going on.

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O
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

We went on a Saturday evening. We had reservations and were glad we had them. The place was very busy. The food was good but a little pricey. Most entrees were $25 and up. Drinks were reasonable-$10 martinis. I'd go back again.

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OT
Chicago
6 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 5ambience 2

Food was cold

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TS
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

They could be one of the best bistros even in Paris. Fresh ingredients are carefully cooked with great recipes. The tastes are never been too salty, sweet or greasy. We will definitely come back soon.

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

Painfully loud for no reason...service horrible...food average at best...poorly managed...very disappointing!

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C
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 4

The food was delicious, the room is lovely, the service was good, but the noise level was so high as to make for an unpleasant experience. My husband and I split a beet salad, then he had the salmon special and I had mussels with linguine, all very good. We’ve dined at Little Gem before and it’s always been rather noisy, but this time it really detracted from the experience and made conversation very difficult. I doubt that we will go back, especially on a Saturday night.

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W
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

This is a lovely little place with carefully prepared food and a small, thoughtful menu. The atmosphere is fairly intimate, as it’s small inside with cozy decor like candles and wood. We ordered chicken and steak, they were cooked properly. We were informed the chicken took a little longer but that was fine. Adequate drink menu with a delicious whisky sour and raspberry martini, also good bourbons to choose from. Amazing salted caramel cookie sundae cooked in a skillet for dessert. We have a great server who was pleasant.

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F
Chicago
21 reviews
Dined on January 16, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Always enjoy the food and warm ambience. Wait staff friendly.

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GB
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 3food 5service 2ambience 3

Service was super slow. It took over 30 minutes for us to get garlic bread that we asked for right when we sat down at 8:30pm. We did not get out appetizers until 45 minutes after we sat down, and we had to keep asking and reminding the waiter about our orders. We did not get our main meals until 9:45pm. We waited 75 minutes to get food. We spent almost 2 hours in the restaurant and most of the time was spent waiting. Food was excellent, but had to wait forever even after the large dinner crowd had thinned out and it was close to the 10pm closing time. Restaurant needs more waiters.

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DD
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on January 13, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent!I can't wait to go back

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AF
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

They didn't have high chairs! Also, they were pretty disorganized. Our waitress was brand new, so that was probably part of it. We ordered 6 meals, and they all came out like 2-3 minutes apart. I think they knew it wasn't the best experience because they offered us free dessert. That said everyone really loved the food and they were VERY nice. I will go back. Very quaint spot. We were there for weekend brunch.

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f
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great space, expanded menu lots of good choices.

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BC
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 8, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

What a great neighborhood spot. We visited for lunch and the service is great, the ambiance is comfortable, and the food is delicious. I will definitely be going back for dinner sometime soon!

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We absolutely loved our dinner. Everything was extraordinary. We will absolutely be back.

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S
Chicago
10 reviews
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very quaint, charming and elegant.

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g
Chicago
7 reviews
Dined on January 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

Was our first time but not our last!

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JK
Houston
1 review
Dined on January 2, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Myself and my boyfriend went here to celebrate a New Year and loved the food, live Jazz performance and just overall experience. He like his chicken dish and I had the oysters which were phenomenal.

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OT
Houston
8 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 2

Service was horrible. This was a pre-fix menu for NYE. 40 minutes to receive our appetizers, then our entrees came and were sent back because we never received our salads so when our entrees were brought back out they were cold. Part of the pre-fix was to receive a champagne toast. We did not get it. We were brought our bill instead without asking for it and felt very rushed and uncomfortable to pay and get out. What a shame. It should have been a great experience/service but wasn’t.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 3ambience 5

New Year’s Eve. Very disappointed to discover a special limited and outrageously priced menu when we arrived. We have been here before and looked forward to a good experience again. But with a special limited menu they didn’t show off their best. Disappointing.

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SO
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Opentable indicated full menu was available in addition to New Year's Eve prix fixe; menu posted at restaurant indicated the same. We arrived for our reservation, seated immediately, and waited...and waited...and waited 10 minutes for a server to acknowledge us. Server told us only prix fixe menu was available. We left. Probably won't return.

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q
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 2ambience 5

Everything was excellent except the service was slow.

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JB
1 review
Dined on December 23, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service and absolutely delicious, interesting food. The scotch egg appetizer was so much fun, and the vegetable risotto was perfection.

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J
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 19, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Warm ambience, good food and great service. A really good spot for dinner.

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l
Chicago
33 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This was my third time dining here and it was as good as the other two times. Our server was charming and very professional and knowledgeable of the menu items. We really loved the experience.

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r
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Met a friend today for Saturday brunch. Wonderful quaint neighborhood gem! Great service. Ordered the Florentine Eggs Benedict...incredibly delicious! Make sure to make a reservation. European ambiance including small seating area. Perfect spot for a brunch date or lunch,

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VT
Chicago
11 reviews
Dined on December 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful experience for a dinner with friends! Great food and lovely ambience. Danny our server was terrific.! We’ll go back for sure!

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GE
Chicago
179 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The braised short ribs were excellent, and we have wonderfully friendly and professional service.

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s
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on December 10, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

My friends and I had a delicious meal at Little Gem, again. I had the potato-crusted fish (a special that night), two others had the short ribs, and the other had the hanger steak. We shared the cookie and mousse desserts. The food was delicious, and our server was great. We were seated next to a somewhat boisterous group celebrating a birthday, so more space between us would have helped us hear one another. Overall, it was a wonderful evening.

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RH
Chicago
8 reviews
Dined on December 9, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 5

Overall the experience earned three stars. Our reservation was for 7:30, but did not get seated until 7:50. I get it that diners don’t always leave on time, but the hostess was very snippy with us. Our waiter was great. The food was ok. I got the fish special and it was not very special. I left feeling blah. Not sure if I will go back.

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K
Chicago
20 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Love that there is live music but it needs to be toned down a bit for the small space so people can still talk and enjoy the music.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Outstanding food and service as always.

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OT
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on December 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful hospitality — appreciate how beautifully you treat your regulars! Always feels like coming home again!

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AG
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service and outstanding food. A true hidden gem in Oak Park.

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C
Chicago
22 reviews
Dined on November 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Great cozy one room restaurant. Noise level is high when filled up because of the tin ceiling.

There were four of us and three of the four dinners were great (salmon, shrimp risotto and Australian Sea Bass). Unfortunately, my Hanger Steak was a big disappointment (and it was my birthday dinner). It was tough, under cooked and the portion size was small. The French fries that accompanied the steak were also under-cooked.

Service was good but it took forever to get our dinners. I was given a complimentary creme brûlée, which was nice.

I would go there again but not order the Hanger Steak!

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M
Chicago
12 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Wonderful food, service, menu, live music and atmosphere. Can’t wait to return!

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on November 17, 2018
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 4

We ate at Little Gem last Fri night and had a horrible service experience - we had a reservation and had to wait almost an hour to get seated (why the heck even take reservations?) and the hostess didn’t even want us to go to the bar while we were waiting because she said it was too crowded (but we went anyway!) Then it took way too long to get a waiter - we finally had to ask for one. Then 1 of our entrees was served later than the others. The food was fine but the operations situation was so bad that the food surely didn’t compensate. And there didn’t seem to be anyone to complain to - it was as if there was no “adult in the room.”

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