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Girl & The Goat

Chicago, USA

Small plates, punchy flavours and a ‘badass' dining room

Chief reason to visit: Stephanie Izard captured Americans' hearts on TV cookery show Top Chef, becoming the first ever female cook to triumph in 2008. She has gone on to win stomachs too with this uber-cool small plates restaurant in Chicago.

What to order? Dishes are big on flavour and global in outlook. Think seared scallop with pecan romesco, Jerusalem artichoke and blood orange gremolata or duck tongues with tuna and black bean poke (salad), crispy wontons and piri piri. Don't miss the goat empanadas, which come with miso-blue cheese aioli and squash and apple slaw.

Signature dish: In wood oven-roasted pig face, the swine’s head is braised, roasted and sliced, then served with egg, tamarind, coriander, red wine maple and potato sticks.

What's the vibe? Housed in a former industrial building, the dining room is dominated by a huge open kitchen, which creates a bustling energy, while exposed wooden beams, tiled floors and flickering candles add a homely feel. Izard describes it as “rustic with a bit of badass”.

About the chef: After cooking at various Chicago restaurants for chefs including Jean-Georges Vongerichten at Vong and Sean McClain at Spring, Izard opened her first restaurant, Scylla (now closed), in 2004 at the tender age of 27. Girl and the Goat opened in 2010.

On the pass

  • Stephanie Izard

Style of food

  • Global eclectic, small plates

Standout dish

  • Wood oven-roasted pig face