Growing up in Oklahoma with a family of restaurateurs and grocers, Chef Rick Bayless was no stranger to the culinary world as a child. During his college years, he studied Spanish and Latin Cultures, and during this time, his love of Latin Cuisine broadened. During the 80’s, he lived in Mexico while writing his first cookbook, which only further solidified his love for Latin food and culture, prompting him to open his first restaurant; Frontera Grill, in 1987.
Located in Chicago, Frontera Grill was opened immediately after Chef Rick Bayless and his wife, Deann, returned from their extended time in Mexico. A casual restaurant, their goal was to create a place that reminded them of where they had been in their travels. When you enter the restaurant, you will immediately be transported to Mexico, with Mariachi music that plays in the background, vibrant colors, open seating, and colorful Mexican folk art on the walls. The flavors and foods are authentic Mexican, completed with tangy Tomatillos and spicy Chiles. While the menu is always evolving around local midwestern ingredients from farmers, guests can always expect an authentic experience when visiting Frontera Grill. Frontera Grill offers a vast menu, complete with a raw bar, appetizers, entrees, and specials that will ensure you can return again and again and try new items. Guests can elect to begin the evening with the Classic Frontera Ceviche, made with Hawaiian Albacore, Lime, Tomatoes, Olives, Cilantro, Green Chile, and Tostaditas, this dish combines classic flavors to create a fresh plate. Diners can choose from entrée options such as classic Enchiladas, Grilled Shrimp Pascale with a sauce of Ancho Chile, Pumpkin Seeds, and Epazote, and Oaxacan Carne Asada with Sweet Plantains to name only a few. End your meal with Sticky Toffee Pudding or a Homemade Mexican Vanilla Bean Ice Cream with White Rum. No matter what you choose, dinner at Frontera Grill is sure to provide a fresh and authentic experience in a casual, vibrant setting, that will make you want to return to try all the menu has to offer.
- James Beard; National Chef of the Year, 1995
- International Herald Tribune; Third Best Casual Dining Restaurant in the World,
- Insignia of the Order of the Aztec Eagle, 2012