Ashok Selvam | Eater | October 25, 2018

Yes, for yet another year Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse in the Gold Coast is the top-grossing independent restaurant in Chicago, according to the latest Restaurant Business Online top 100 list. This year, Gibsons made $25.5 million in sales, a 2.9 percent increase from 2017’s numbers. Gibsons also moved up one spot nationally, from No. 10 to No. 9 this year.

Twelve Chicago restaurants and three suburban locations made the list, giving Illinois 15 restaurants overall. That’s more than double from last year when seven restaurants were mentioned. Primehouse, which closed, is the only local restaurant that dropped.

There’s an obvious skew toward pricey steakhouses as 31 steakhouses made the list nationally. Eleven of those are from the Chicago area. Restaurant Business picked up on that and featured Swift & Sons — Boka Restaurant Group’s Fulton Market steakhouse — in a story about emerging brands. Swift & Sons made the list for the first time and Maple & Ash in Gold Coast was another first-timer. While five Gibsons restaurants made the list, its new riverfront restaurant that opened in October 2017, Gibsons Italia, failed to scratch the rankings. It’s unclear if that’s because the restaurant was still too new for consideration.

The question for many is what will the list look like in 2019 for Chicago? That’s when the list will take into account TAO’s arrival to River North. The clubstaurant chain once again is the top-grossing restaurant in the country, as the Las Vegas location brought in $43.4 million in sales. Two TAO locations in New York also appear on the list at No. 4 and No. 12. Will TAO, which imported Kardashians to the River North opening in September, make an impact on Chicago’s dining scene? Next year, the Smith, a New York restaurant with three locations in the top 100, is also heading to Chicago.

The Chicago-area restaurants that made the list, along with the national rankings and sales numbers, are listed below.

    1. Gibsons Gold Coast (No. 9, $25.5 million)
    2. Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab (No. 20, $21.3 million)
    3. Maple & Ash (No. 24, $20.3 million)
    4. RPM Steak (No. 26, $20.25 million)
    5. Gibsons Oak Brook (No. 37, $18.3 million)

Full List