About The Dawson

730 West Grand Ave
Chicago, IL 60654
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Awarded a Bib Gourmand in 2014 and 2015, The Dawson is a casual neighborhood hangout features an energetic series of bi-level indoor and outdoor spaces. Each unique area is approachable, yet versatile in offerings, as well as experience. The menu presents a new American cuisine characterized by simple flavors with a farm-driven Midwestern sensibility by chef Shaun King. The beverage program of house made sodas, cocktails, craft beers and wines creatively complements chef King’s menu. 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 restaurant.
offers an artfully stripped-down aesthetic, highlighting natural and reclaimed materials in unexpected ways throughout the restaurant.

Dining Style:
Casual Dining

Cuisines:
American

Hours of Operation:
4:30PM - 10PM MONDAY (BAR UNTIL 11PM)
4:30PM - 11PM TUESDAY - THURSDAY (BAR UNTIL 12AM)
4:00PM - 12AM FRIDAY AND SATURDAY (BAR UNTIL 1:30AM)
4:00PM - 10PM SUNDAY (BAR UNTIL 11PM)

BRUNCH HOURS:
10:30AM - 3:00PM SATURDAY AND SUNDAY

Cross Street:
Grand - Halsted & Milwaukee

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(312) 243-8955

Website:
http://www.the-dawson.com/

Public Transit:
Grand Blue Line across the street

Executive Chef:
Shaun King

Additional:
Full Bar, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Weekend Brunch, Wheelchair Access

Restaurant Photos

  • The Dawson
  • The Dawson
  • The Dawson
The Dawson
The Dawson
The Dawson

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Private Dining

We are passionate about the food, beverage, and hospitality we provide and look forward to collaborating with you, our guest, to make your event memorable!

The Dawson Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.5

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.4

service

4.4

ambience

4.7

value

4.0

noise

Moderate

96% would recommend it to a friend

great for outdoor dining (136)
fit for foodies (102)
good for groups (99)
See All
neighborhood gem (77)
hot spot (67)
special occasion (66)
great for brunch (57)
vibrant bar scene (50)
romantic (27)
great for lunch (24)
notable wine list (18)
late-night find (17)
scenic view (11)
kid-friendly (6)
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623 reviews
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My book club met here for brunch on Sund ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined 6 days ago

My book club met here for brunch on Sunday and had the most incredible experience. The staff and service were exceptional and handle an oversight with such class and professionalism I was blown away! The food was excellent as well. I'm a loyal customer and plan to come back again and again. You will not be disappointed!

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food5
ambience5
service5

Ordered a Ild Fashioned and they said it ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 24, 2016

Ordered a Ild Fashioned and they said it would be a dollar more for a square ice cube.

Didn't have the first bottle of wine, out of stock.

Old fashion took over 30 min to make.

They ran out of our second choice of wine after one bottle.

Nothing special with the food. Overpriced in general.

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food2
ambience3
service1

Only thing I would change is the server. ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 24, 2016

Only thing I would change is the server. She was not concerned with our interests and offered items to increase her check. We had enough food left over for the entire table, all 8 people, and didn't need to order certain items. She should've had a bit more consideration to what would fit our needs.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
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food5
ambience4
service2
value4

First, our server did not come speak to ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 23, 2016

First, our server did not come speak to us for at least 10 minutes after we were seated. I had to ask a busboy who would be taking care of us and then she turned up. When we let her know that we had theater tickets and needed to leave by a certain time (we still had 1 hour and 15 minutes to dine), she sort of panicked and said we needed to order everything right away because they take a long time to prepare their food and she didn't want us to be late. That was thoughtful, but ALL the food--AND WE ORDERED MANY THINGS--arrived at the same time about 15 minutes later! It's hard to believe it was prepared to order. We liked the food but it couldn't overcome the serving errors.

Tags: great for outdoor dining
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food4
ambience5
service1
value3

Fantastic service!! Good was amazing!! T ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 23, 2016

Fantastic service!! Good was amazing!! The restaurant is also very nice! Perfect for a brunch, get together, or even a party!!

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, scenic view, neighborhood gem, hot spot
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

I love the atmosphere of this place as w ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 21, 2016

I love the atmosphere of this place as well as the wine list...however, I'm not sure if we were being pushed out, but out waitress was beyond pushy as far as rushing us to order. We ordered apps and drinks and there wasn't more than 4 minutes that passed over the course of 4 hours that she didn't come by. While I appreciate an attentive waitress, I don't appreciate one who simply takes away our menues after, in her opinion, it seemed as if we weren't going to order more food. It was very off putting.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, notable wine list
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food4
ambience4
service2
value3

Overall the food was pretty solid, my on ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 17, 2016

Overall the food was pretty solid, my one complaint is the lobster had a funny aftertaste and I found unsettling especially given the cost. Everything else I enjoyed

Tags: great for outdoor dining
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food3
ambience4
service5
value3

Went for brunch on a pseudo-rainy Sunday ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 17, 2016

Went for brunch on a pseudo-rainy Sunday. The best thing about this place, in my opinion, is the patio area. Due to the weather, we had to sit inside. It seemed like the outside was just as big as the inside. The food was good. I had the BEALT sandwich. The was pretty big. My friend got the pork mac and cheese. That portion was HUGE. Delicious - but huge. We had some drinks with brunch so the bill came out higher for brunch that the prior night's dinner (which also included drinks) so that was the only down side.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
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food4
ambience4
service4
value3

I was pretty bummed out that we weren't ...

 
 (Las Vegas)
·Dined on July 17, 2016

I was pretty bummed out that we weren't assigned to sitting out on the patio.We also didn't receive our drinks till we were done with our dinner.They def made it up by a round of free drinks and a bottle of champagne.Overall the experience was great and we enjoyed our time there.

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food5
ambience5
service4

I was very excited to try the Dawson and ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 17, 2016

I was very excited to try the Dawson and thought it would be a great place to take a friend who was visiting from out of town. Unfortunately, the experience was not what I had expected. We waited over 45 minutes after our reservation time to be seated. There were multiple tables that were seated ahead of us even though they arrived well after we did. When the staff realized their mistake, they brought over a round of drinks but by then we were all very hungry. The appetizers were all very good, however most of our entrees came out cold. We sent one of the entrees back, but it did not come out much better the second time. The staff was nice enough to remove that meal from our total bill. Overall, I enjoyed the outdoor patio but was very disappointed in the service and quality of food.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, vibrant bar scene
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food3
ambience4
service3
value3

We had brunch and thoroughly enjoyed our ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 16, 2016

We had brunch and thoroughly enjoyed our pastries , entrees and Bloody Mary's! Highly recommend.

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food5
ambience5
service5

Great food, great atmosphere, good price ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 13, 2016

Great food, great atmosphere, good price for what you get. Waiter was good and very knowledgeable. A bit slow at times but Burger night Tuesday seemed to be busy.

We will be back

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food5
ambience5
service4

Food was delicious, but a little pricey. ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 12, 2016

Food was delicious, but a little pricey. The outdoor area is great - very cool vibe. Dishes were perfect for sharing. The mussels were fantastic - served with grilled bread -delish! We also got a whole chicken that was more than enough for 3 - in fact, we had leftover lunch for another 2! Also, the corn palote was great.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion
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food5
ambience5
service4
value2

This restaurant is very nice for the unu ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 10, 2016

This restaurant is very nice for the unusual location at Grand and Milwaukee. But it gives them tons of space for I'm sure a reasonable rent. The patio area is huge and comfortable. Decor is very rustic but attractive; however, there's not enough shade outside yet--need some awnings guys! Food was good, especially the avocado toast and the cinnamon rolls. Parking is surprisingly problematic; they do valet but it's $12. Then there's some pay street parking at $4 per hour(!) but just drive around a little and you can find free parking. It's weird.

Tags: great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, vibrant bar scene
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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

Delicious dinner with some old friends. ...

 
 (Los Angeles)
·Dined on July 10, 2016

Delicious dinner with some old friends. Great outdoor area

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food4
ambience5
service5

We went here for a much needed date nigh ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 9, 2016

We went here for a much needed date night, couldn't ask for a better experience!

Our waitress was friendly and wonderful, the busboy was quick to fill our glasses and take plates, and the food was amazing! The Dawson made our night so special!

Tags: fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The patio here is outstanding! One of th ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 9, 2016

The patio here is outstanding! One of the best in the city I think. The prices are a bit much... But the food and cocktails are delicious. The chicken fried lobster is a great one to share as an app!

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food4
ambience5
service4
value3

Great, service, food and drinks. Pretty ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 9, 2016

Great, service, food and drinks. Pretty expensive, came out to approximately 100 dollars for 2 people after 5 drinks and 1 appetizer. You do the math.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, special occasion
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food4
ambience4
service4
value1

We went here for the first time with ano ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 3, 2016

We went here for the first time with another couple and loved it. Fun live music, amazing cocktails and great food. The roast and chicken fried lobster and oysters were fab. Our waitress was terrific and made good suggestions for us. The outdoor patio is SO worth the visit, it's very cool and we really enjoyed sitting outside in such a fun spot. Highly recommend, we'll be back.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The outdoor patio was so peaceful and ar ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on July 3, 2016

The outdoor patio was so peaceful and artistically landscaped. I liked the seating arrangement in front of the fire pit and there was also a garden perfect for photo ops. The server was really friendly and knowledgeable about the menu. It was a really good vibe.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

Loved it. Great indoor / outdoor setting ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 19, 2016

Loved it. Great indoor / outdoor setting. The umbrella covered patio and the upstairs balcony were great. Brunch menu was different and the food very satisfying. Our waiter was terrific. Knowledgeable. Professional. Friendly. Not sure what it would be like on a Saturday nite but it would be good to find out.

Tags: great for brunch, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, hot spot
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Went for father's day brunch with 2 smal ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 19, 2016

Went for father's day brunch with 2 small children, and the ambience and food was great! Would definitely come back again.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for lunch, scenic view
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

The outdoor dining is what we decided to ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on June 19, 2016

The outdoor dining is what we decided to come here for and are so happy we did! Our waiter, Kevin, took great care of us and contributed to the great meal and experience we had. We would definitely come back here again!

Tags: great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

We had such a great time. Wendy our serv ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 18, 2016

We had such a great time. Wendy our server and Luis made our experience wonderful!

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food5
ambience5
service5

The food was great and the drinks were d ...

 
 (Dallas)
·Dined on June 18, 2016

The food was great and the drinks were delicious. No complaints at all..

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food4
ambience4
service4

Went heref or no othe reason than to enj ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 18, 2016

Went heref or no othe reason than to enjoy a fun night out with my girlfriend. From the vibe to the food, everything lived up to the hype

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, late-night find, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

LOVE The Dawson. Amazing Food, Drinks a ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 18, 2016

LOVE The Dawson. Amazing Food, Drinks and Staff. One of my favorite restaurants in Chicago. Never disappointed.

Tags: fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, late-night find, neighborhood gem, hot spot
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

The service was fantastic. The hostess, ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 17, 2016

The service was fantastic. The hostess, server and buser were on their game. However, the lamb rack tasted like it was frozen, dethawed and grilled without seasoning, the sides served with it were better than the actual lamb. The pork belly lettuce wraps were good but literally just pork belly cubes in a lettuce bibb. They put bleu cheese in my MIL's Greek salad and the server acted like that was totally acceptable. The music was techno versions of hit songs. Wish it were just the hit song, I felt like I was eating at Forever 21. Beautiful interior, well trained staff, disappointing food. I won't be back.

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food2
ambience5
service5

Everything was great. We sat outside nea ...

 
 (New York Area)
·Dined on June 17, 2016

Everything was great. We sat outside near a speaker. It was loud. I would definatkey go back but not sit in the corner near the speaker

Tags: hot spot
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food5
ambience5
service5
value3

the food was okay but the desserts were ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 16, 2016

the food was okay but the desserts were great! wine was good too. I would come back for drinks and desserts.

Tags: neighborhood gem, notable wine list
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food3
ambience5
service4
value3

We had a great experience!!! Beautiful o ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 12, 2016

We had a great experience!!! Beautiful outside where we celebrated 2 birthdays. Great place for Sunday Fun Day Brunch!

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food5
ambience5
service4

We went there for dinner before a concer ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 11, 2016

We went there for dinner before a concert @ Northerly Island, food atmosphere and the service were top notch. We were scheduled to go to The Gage but my sister recommended as it is the sister spot to the Gage. Great suggestion, we had an enjoyable time and will be heading back.

Tags: great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

Absolutely fabulous...great service, out ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 11, 2016

Absolutely fabulous...great service, outdoor tables with enough room between not to feel 'squeezed'. Brunch was terrific, very nice variety on the drink menu. I'm a big one for music, not loud crazy but good background, mood setting and for a lovely outdoor lunch PERFECT..highly recommend, will go back for dinner, soon,

Tags: great for brunch, great for outdoor dining
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

the ambiance and vibes are what makes th ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 4, 2016

the ambiance and vibes are what makes this place. Food is good and so are drinks but a little bit over priced. Overall great experience

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food4
ambience5
service4

One of the BEST restaurants around. Not ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 3, 2016

One of the BEST restaurants around. Not only is the food awesome they run like a well oiled machine. We haven't experienced this kind of service at a restaurant in a long time. If you haven't been there, go!! Their speciality cocktails are inventive and the food is to die for. Run there now! Tell Michael (the manager) we sent you.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food5
ambience5
service5

Now this is special!

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on June 2, 2016

A delightful surprise on our first time visit for a birthday celebration. The service was amazing - attentive but not hovering. Prosecco start off with mussels and saffron bread, squid and salad. Birthday dessert treat from the house. It was all wonderful. I would say it's a 20 something spot, but we didn't mind. Our server was very personable and efficient. A great experience and we will definitely be back.

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot
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food5
ambience4
service5
value3

Awesome patio and fantastic food. I'd hi ...

vip
 (Chicago)
·Dined on May 28, 2016

Awesome patio and fantastic food. I'd highly recommend.

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food5
ambience5
service5

The Dawson Does It Again

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on May 23, 2016

I have been to The Dawson many times, and it is generally my "go-to" no matter what the occasion. When I have friends visiting from out of town, I always make sure that we come to The Dawson at least once while they are in town. My friends, Kati and Jonathan, had just gotten married in Santa Fe and had taken the train to Chicago on their way back to Baltimore. I could think of no better place to celebrate. They were both blown away by The Dawson's food and beverages. I look forward to celebrating special occasions (or just any ordinary day) for many years to come at this extraordinarily fabulous eatery.

Tags: great for brunch, fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, neighborhood gem, hot spot, vibrant bar scene
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food5
ambience5
service3
value5

Great outdoor spot

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on May 22, 2016

The hostess was fabulous! Our server, however, didn't seem to want to be there and wasn't helpful with the menu. She took away our empty drink glasses and walked away without asking if we'd like another. I joked that the hostess' enthusiasm made up for our server's lack of enthusiasm.

I can't believe it's taken me so long to go there. I love the outdoor area, the cocktails were really good and there is something for everyone.

We will return!

Tags: fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, notable wine list
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food5
ambience5
service2
value4

I visited with three others for my girlf ...

 
 (Chicago)
·Dined on May 21, 2016

I visited with three others for my girlfriend's birthday. We had attended the Time-Out Mac and Cheese Smackdown and had been wanting to visit the restaurant to sample more of what they had. The award-winning mac and cheese is still brilliant. The hummus is also very good.

The entrees were more hit-or-miss; the chicken and halibut were excellent, with simple, standout flavor. The pork and lamb were far more complicated. It was difficult to get some of each ingredient in a single bite, so they were bit inconsistent. The pork cut was also fatty and unevely-cooked, so, while the dish was still good, there wasn't enough pork to go around with all the other ingredients.

Service was attentive, cheerful, and very helpful.

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food3
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service5

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