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Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM
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Booked 12 times today

Sai Cafe

4.8
311 reviews
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$31 to $50
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Japanese
Top Tags:
  • Neighborhood Gem
  • Casual
  • Good for a Date
Sai Cafe is a hidden gem located in the heart of Lincoln Park, Chicago. We specialize in Japanese Seafood and Sushi prepared to your specifications. For twenty-four years, Chef and Owner James Bee has been serving the freshest and highest quality seafood to our patrons. Additionally, our friendly staff has been expertly trained to provide exceptional service and answer any questions that might arise. We welcome all walk-in, take-out and delivery orders and recommend reservations for weekend evenings. Our menu is critically acclaimed by numerous media organizations and has acquired several awards. Thank you for your interest in Sai Cafe and we look forward to serving you soon!
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Japanese
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Hours of operation
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 4:30 PM - 11:00 PM, Friday - Saturday: 4:30 PM - 12:00 PM, Sunday: 3:30 PM - 10:00 PM.
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Phone number
(773) 472-8080
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Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
James Bee
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Private party facilities
Private dining is offered for parties up to 30 people. Our knowledgeable staff will gladly assist you in planning your special occasion or business dinner.
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Private party contact
James Bee: (773) 472-8080
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Catering
Our full menu is available for carry-out, delivery and private catering events. To place an order for a special occasion, please call the restaurant for further details.
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
W Armitage Ave.
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Public transit
Brown line Armitage station.
Additional
Bar Dining, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Delivery, Full Bar, Non-Smoking, Private Room, Takeout
What 311 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.8
service
4.5
ambience
4.4
value
Noise · Quiet
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
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5.0Dined 6 hours ago

Some of the best sushi in Chicago! Incredible service. They are Wonderful toward children.

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5.0Dined 3 days ago

Our "go-to" place for sushi. The teriyaki chicken is great!

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5.0Dined on April 1, 2018

A delicious, easy to
Go to place. We go very often

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4.0Dined on March 15, 2018

Ambiance is pleasant. Food is good.
A neighborhood gem.

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5.0Dined on March 14, 2018

It’s always a pleasure to go to Sai Cafe. The wait staff are very friendly and attentive. The owner Jim could not be nicer. And the food is excellent.

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5.0Dined on March 11, 2018

Sai Cafe is always fantastic. Service is very pleasant, plus the owner, Jim Bee, is terrific. He always takes the time to greet us and say hello, as do the chefs behind the sushi bar. Fish is consistently fresh, and there is enough variety and style of dishes to make everyone happy. Definitely the best tamago we've tasted in town!

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4.0Dined on March 11, 2018

Sushi is very fresh and well priced. Service is friendly and efficient. Worth going out of your.

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5.0Dined on March 10, 2018

I went here for the first time this past Friday and wow the sushi was so good - we found a new favorite sushi spot! I think it is better than Sunda. It was balanced with its spices, the eel was hot and fresh, the rice was sticky as it should be, the rolls were nice and moist and not dry like some sushi can be... it is clear they really treat each ingredient as a separate entity versus a roll as a whole. I promise when you take a bite you will know what I mean! We sat at the sushi bar and it was so neat to see the chefs in action! The owner was there making sushi as well. He takes great pride in what he does, was greeting guests as they come in and as they leave. We had a spicy tuna, dragon and spicy crispy white tuna roll and all were incredible! The tuna was so fresh and in the spicy tuna roll you actually got a regular size roll with a ton of tuna in the middle. This is rare! Normally spicy tuna is such a small roll... we were planning to order four rolls but only needed three for my husband and I which says a lot!

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5.0Dined on March 6, 2018

Excellent food and attentive and friendly service in a comfortable and elegant surroundings

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5.0Dined on March 6, 2018

Always a favorite, consistently wonderful food and the people here are amazing. LOVE SAI

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5.0Dined on February 25, 2018

We go there often. The food is perfectly fresh and delicious. Emma, our favorite server remembers everything we like. And, wowed is last night when she remembered our friend’s drink. Our friend was there once, several months ago.

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5.0Dined on February 24, 2018

As always, the staff at Sia does a great job. Sushi is the freshest and 2nd to none

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5.0Dined on February 18, 2018

We always love Sai Cafe. The sushi is great (favorites: Halloween and spicy tuna maki, escolar sushi), as is the seaweed salad. Japanese standbys like miso soup, soba noodles and tempura are also always done well. It's generally quiet, unless there's a large party. It's so hard to find restaurants where you can hear your companions speak! The service is always very quick and courteous. Sai consistently delivers a lovely meal out.

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5.0Dined on February 17, 2018

Very fresh and delicious sushi rolls.

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5.0Dined on January 27, 2018

We haven't been here in 10 years and decided to come back--we live just around the corner! When we came here years ago I didn't fully appreciate sushi and over the years really enjoy sushi. 10 years ago I was turned off by the cold edamame which was a ridiculous reason not to return. We had a great meal! The sushi quality was outstanding and some of the sushi dishes (e.g. fatty tuna dish) were very creative! We will definitely return (and in less than 10 years time).

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5.0Dined on January 24, 2018

We love Sai Cafe. The chef, staff, & decor make this a special place for Chicagoans & guests from out-of-town. Our guest, from LA, thought it was fantastic. We keep coming back! Thank you Sai & save the window for us!

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4.0Dined on January 20, 2018

Not our first time at Sai, however it was our first time sitting in the dining room versus at the sushi bar. Service was good/average. Busser was more attentive and visible than the waitress. Dining room was pretty loud that evening, we could barely keep a conversation without a sudden outburst from a neighboring table. Sushi was very good, albeit not as good as I remember it being.

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5.0Dined on January 19, 2018

The best sushi in Chicago served in a friendly, welcoming atmosphere

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5.0Dined on January 5, 2018

We are fortunate to have such an outstanding sushi restaurant close by. Jim, the owner, is very personable and makes you feel welcomed. Of course the sushi is the main draw. It is fresh and very well presented. The other items on the menu are also excellent. The wait staff is attentive and very nice. It is a regular spot for us.

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5.0Dined on November 25, 2017

My husband and I have been going there for over 20 years and love the sushi. It’s the best sushi in Chicago. The owner is the friendliest person that I know.

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5.0Dined on November 25, 2017

Sai Café is our favorite place for sushi in Chicago. We have tried all the trendy spots, but they don’t hold a candle to Sai. Not only is the sushi delicious, masterfully made and top-quality, but the rest of the menu is excellent as well. The miso black cod is outstanding, as is the lettuce salad with ginger dressing, the yaki soba noodles and many other dishes.

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5.0Dined on November 25, 2017

Fantastic dining experience with a friendly chef who had been doing phenomenal work for 30 years. An amazing meal.

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5.0Dined on November 22, 2017

First time at Sai Cafe and we loved it! Really great vibe inside, we thought it looked and felt cool. We were greeted by all the sushi chef's behind the bar when we walked in, and you get the sense that the head chef knows everyone that comes in. The food was excellent. We started with the Gyo za and pan-fried scallops - both perfect. All of the sushi was super fresh. Had a few drinks to go with dinner that were all great as well.

Definitely will go back. Very glad we found this gem.

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4.0Dined on November 12, 2017

Never disappoints. Been eating there for over 30 years

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5.0Dined on November 11, 2017

We have celebrated many birthdays and anniversaries at Sai Cafe. We don't get to visit as often as we would like since we moved, but its still our favorite spot!

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5.0Dined on October 16, 2017

I love Sai Cafe. It is always consistent, delicious and fresh. My favorite sushi place since I first went there long ago.

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5.0Dined on September 30, 2017

Very friendly staff. Great sushi options. Fantastic sake selections

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4.0Dined on September 26, 2017

Great food and the gentlemen at the sushi bar create great sushi and are cordial and keen to make sure that you enjoy your fish. It was good quality fish and skilled sushi bar chef/s.
Service was weak. Server asked if we’d like more and we replied yes and she walked away. Thankfully, one of the gents behind the sushi bar understood and sent her back. Then when I ordered uni, I asked that it would be served last and of course, it arrived before the next course. We ordered an app that arrived after a fish we ordered 10 minutes later. Lastly, she seemed to delight in asking me questions as soon as I put a piece of fish in my mouth.
In summary, the sushi bar cared greatly about us as guest and cared about the food. The servers, just stuck in a job they have no interest in and bring no enthusiasm.

Too bad, because the sushi was very good.

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5.0Dined on September 24, 2017

Delicious, fresh food and especially good service. A great "go to anytime" place.

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5.0Dined on September 23, 2017

Had never been here before, but my sister is always bragging about this place. So we decided to have a birthday dinner here. It grew from 6people to 8 people to 13 people and they were so kind and accommodating. Jumped into action to get the table set up. Waiters/Waitresses were so kind and patient! The owner himself came by to chat. And best of all the food was AWESOME! Will def be going back!

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4.0Dined on September 17, 2017

Sai cafe was good but nothing spectacular. We had sushi and noodles, everyone was happy with their meal but it wasn’t better than the sushi that we usually have at our local place.

Service was great and the staff was helpful.

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4.0Dined on September 9, 2017

The food was delicious and beautifully served. My only issue was we went there for my son's birthday and the first 3 things he ordered from the Sushi menu they didn't have. He finally asked them what did they have available (it was a Saturday night(. They might be better off having a daily menu rather than the complete menu and disappointed customers.

What we did order that they had available was very good.

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

We have been going to Sai Cafe since our kids were little. Now they have given us 7 grandchildren and Sai remains a place that they want to come back to when in town. 30 years and it has only gotten better.

Try it, you'll like it

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5.0Dined on September 1, 2017

Jim Bee and his staff are simply the best! And I love how they treat my girls. Whenever I say what do you want to eat, they scream "Sushi at Sai".

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5.0Dined on August 27, 2017

Good, fresh food, Emma is a perfect server

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5.0Dined on August 19, 2017

My wife and I stopped in on a Saturday and were greeted and seated quickly. As we found out later, Jimmy the owner came to our table and explained many items on the menu and since my wife never ate sushi before, Jim explained in detail about the prep and freshness of the fish. He made several recommendations and we went with them. Everything was outstanding and my wife is a convert!
We will be back.
Just loved everything about the place.

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5.0Dined on August 14, 2017

The food here is always the best. The ambiance is quiet and casual. The service is friendly. One of my favorite places in the city. Try the Black Cod.

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4.0Dined on July 31, 2017

Excellent sushi at reasonable prices. The appetizers (Udon w/Tempura) were also quite good. Service was friendly and courteous.

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5.0Dined on July 14, 2017

The chef came out and helped us order- awesome choices. The Black cod was excellent. Great neighborhood environment. Fresh sushi and wonderful service.

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4.0Dined on June 17, 2017

Great food - lovely fresh sushi in a nice ambience. Very good value neighborhood restaurant. Will definitely be back.

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