Some people suggested I cross-post from r/chicago
If you’re planning to participate in Chicago Restaurant Week, I compared the cost of each of the 500+ prix fixe menus to the individual item values on the corresponding regular menus.
This spreadsheet shows where it’s possible/likely to get a bad deal and where it’s easy to get a bargain, along with my personal recommendations (in green).
Some places are a lot easier to exploit than others, and some places actually make it impossible to get a good value. There are a few key takeaways though, if you don’t want to scroll through this entire thing:
Soup is usually the least valuable appetizer- sometimes by a long shot
If you’re going to a steakhouse, order the steak
Be especially careful with tapas/dim sum as they don’t typically mesh well with the RW format
Vegetarians, you’re awesome, but RW menus aren’t usually designed with you in mind
I used a similar methodology to the one described in Anthony Todd’s article in Chicago Magazine last year, but it didn’t look like anyone was planning to recreate his list for this year (I tried asking him)… so I did.
This was sort of a rush job and I did the entire thing alone, so there’s a hefty list of mathematical assumptions and a smattering of errors I probably made. If something seems off and you’re curious, let me know and I’ll look into it for you.