The best spots outside the city proper

There's no doubt that Chicago is a world-class culinary city. What often gets lost in the shuffle, though, are the excellent options available outside city limits. Destination dining exists in suburbia and it should not be overlooked.

Those who live near one of the following restaurants likely already know how great the food is. For everyone else, we're here to give you the lowdown. These places don't get the attention they deserve so read up and tell all your friends. Some have been in operation for decades—a testament to their quality.

Don't despair the next time you're in the suburbs. It's not just an endless sea of chain restaurants. There is hope. It comes in the form of burgers and Italian beef that are on par with Chicago's best, fine dining that's as luxurious as any Michelin-starred spot, and much more. So take notes and start planning unless you want to endure endless apps at TFI Fridays for the umpteenth time. Listed in alphabetical order.

Did we miss your favorite place? Let us know in the comments.