Whoever said that nothing is free has clearly never been to the four restaurants below. Sit down to a meal at any of these quality eateries and you'll realize that sometimes your favorite part of the meal is gratis.
Sesame Cucumber Salad, Kai Sushi: This unassuming sushi spot is a neighborhood joint with the manners of a city sushi bar. You'll get a good feeling about the place when you're greeted with a complimentary salad. A mixture of cucumbers and seaweed is tossed in a light dressing and topped with sesame seeds. It's a refreshing way to gear up for a plate of their specialty rolls or sashimi. 1406 W. Grand Ave.; 312-733-9083
Amuse Bouche, Bread Basket and Shortbread Cookies, Province: Province is full of freebies, creating a unique dining experience that changes seasonally. Start off with the amuse bouche - when I went during the winter it was a shooter of smoked salmon topped with crème fraiche and frisee. Then, you'll move on to the inventive bread basket, which includes house-made herb crackers and rolls with a delicious roasted red pepper butter. And on your way out, grab one of the buttery shortbread cookies topped with caramel and chocolate. 161 N. Jefferson St.; 312-669-9900
Chive Buttermilk Biscuits, Abigail's: Tucked away in the suburbs, Abigail's is the perfect mix of modern American cuisine and comfort food. The best example of this comes out piping hot in a skillet. The chive buttermilk biscuits are thankfully on the house because you won't be able to stop eating them. They're topped with melted cheddar and will melt in your mouth because of their buttery texture. 493 Roger Williams Ave.; Highland Park; 847-849-1009
Chips and Salsa, Nacional 27: While the standard chips and salsa usually come on the house, at a trendy place like Nacional, you generally pay for every bite. That's why it's so surprising that they offer a special mixture of chips for patrons. You get your standard tortilla chips - although these are thin and light for snacking - blue corn chips and vegetable chips as well. The salsa has a bold flavor and acts as the perfect dip. The only problem is that you're gonna want to order some of the chunky guacamole to go with it. 325 W. Huron St.; 312-664-2727
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