As fans of cronuts and cake pops can attest, food trends come and go. So how can you tell which tastes are trending at this very moment?
We took a data-driven look at the question, using Yelp to deduce which eateries have been seeing especially high review volumes this month.
To find out who made the list, we looked at Chicago businesses on Yelp by category and counted how many reviews each received. Rather than compare them based on number of reviews alone, we calculated a percentage increase in reviews over the past month, and tracked businesses that consistently increased their volume of reviews to identify statistically significant outliers compared to past performance.
Read on to see which spots are getting plenty of attention, right now.
Whether or not you’ve been hearing buzz about Taco Maya, the popular bar, which offers tacos, fast food and more, is a hot topic according to Yelp review data.
While businesses categorized as “Bars” on Yelp saw a median 1.8% increase in new reviews over the past month, Taco Maya bagged a 16.2% increase in new reviews within that timeframe, maintaining a healthy four-star rating. It significantly outperformed the previous month by gaining 1.9 times more reviews than expected based on its past performance.
There’s more that’s trending on Chicago’s bar scene: Kimski has seen a 7.7% increase in reviews.
Open at 823 S. State St. (between Polk and Ninth streets) since March 2018, Taco Maya offers burritos, quesadillas, tortas and salads in addition to a variety of tacos.
14 Parish is also making waves. Open since January 2017 at 2333 S. Michigan Ave. (between 24th and 23rd streets), the well-established Caribbean and vegetarian spot, which offers seafood and more, has seen a 6.7% bump in new reviews over the last month, compared to a median review increase of 2.8% for all businesses tagged “Seafood” on Yelp. Moreover, on a month-to-month basis 14 Parish’s review count increased by more than 400%.
14 Parish offers coconut shrimp, black bean soup, crab cakes and more. Over the past month, it’s maintained a convincing 4.5-star rating among Yelpers.
Bucktown’s Etta is the city’s buzziest breakfast and brunch spot by the numbers.
The well-established New American and breakfast and brunch spot, which opened at 1840 W. North Ave. (between Honore Street and Elk Grove Avenue) in July 2017, increased its new review count by 10.2% over the past month, an outlier when compared to the median new review count of 2.3% for the Yelp category “Breakfast & Brunch.”
It’s not the only trending outlier in the breakfast and brunch category: Limitless Coffee & Tea – Fulton Market has seen a 9.9% increase in reviews, and Ina Mae Tavern & Packaged Goods has seen a 7.9% bump.
Etta offers egg dishes, pastries, morning cocktails and more.
The Chicago House of Za Vegan Pizzeria
North Center’s The Chicago House of Za Vegan Pizzeria is currently on the upswing in the pizza category on Yelp.
While businesses categorized as “Pizza” on Yelp saw a median 2% increase in new reviews over the past month, this vegan spot, which offers pizza and more, increased its new reviews by 10% — and kept its rating consistent at 4.5 stars.
Recently open for business at 1939 W. Byron (between Lincoln and Damen avenues), the business offers a large variety of vegan pizza, vegan pasta and vegan sandwiches.
Open since March 2016, this well-established bar and Italian spot is trending compared to other businesses categorized as “Italian” on Yelp.
Citywide, businesses tagged “Italian” saw a median 1.7% increase in new reviews over the past month, but il Porcellino saw a 5.2% increase, maintaining a healthy 4.5-star rating throughout.
Located at 59 W. Hubbard in the Near North, il Porcellino offers fresh bread, pasta, salads and more.