Bonyeon Chicago steakhouse

651 West Washington Boulevard, Chicago, IL, 60661
Price: $$$$$

Wednesday-Sunday, 5pm - 10:30pm

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Reservations Recommended

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Bonyeon - Chicago

It had to happen, a beef-centric omakase menu: Bonyeon is it. Under Chef Sangtae Park, Bonyeon is a monument to red meat, the place to go if you want the very best of Asian-influenced beef.

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As reported in Chicago Eater, "Beef has a rich and nuanced history in Korean cuisine, and Bonyeon will highlight that lineage through the vehicle of omakase — a highly ritualized genre of Japanese dining that is by now familiar to Chicagoans. The style’s popularity serves as an on-ramp for diners to encounter cuts of beef that don’t appear on the menu at Gibsons or Steak 48."

Beef was once prohibitively expensive in Korea, so much of the beef cooking in the country focused on head-to-tail of the animal, nothing went to waste, anything edible was eaten. At Bonyeon, the focus is on more popular cuts (i.e., pancreas and tripe are not currently served). In early 2024, the current tasting menu features high-end preparations like Wagyu sukiyaki, skirt steak and ribeye, all done up with Japanese attention to detail and beautifully finessed presentations. Gomtang, a traditional Korean soup, utilizes more obscure cuts, and more like that may very well be in the future of Bonyeon.

As Mike Sula points out in Chicago Reader, Chef Park has "sketched out dozens of ideas for future courses. As time goes on, he’ll introduce more obscure cuts and off bits that might be more challenging or unfamiliar to American diners, like the omasum, the cow’s third compartment forestomach, prized for its mild flavor and soft texture; or neuggansal, aka rib finger, a sliver of rib meat sliced directly off the bone; or pyeonyuk, a sort of headcheese, pressed from thinly sliced top round, shank, knee cartilage, and tendon. He’s particularly looking forward to introducing the complementary pleasures of sous vide beef tongue with abalone."

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