Café Ba-Ba-Reeba

4.8
5498 reviews
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$30 and under
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Tapas / Small Plates
Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba! is Chicago's original tapas restaurant, serving authentic Spanish cuisine in Lincoln Park since 1985. Founding Chef Gabino Sotelino’s menu is designed to share, featuring tapas, pintxos (bite-sized tapas) and the classic Valencian rice dish, paella. Guests will experience a variety of tastes and flavors with signature dishes including Spicy Potatoes (patatas bravas), Baked Goat Cheese in tomato sauce and roasted Bacon-Wrapped Dates. The beverage menu boasts an extensive Spanish wine list, along with six types of sangria ranging from classic red and white to seasonal flavors like white peach and passion fruit. The restaurant is known for a lively atmosphere and warm ambiance, decorated with artwork celebrating Spanish language, cuisine and culture. Guests are invited to dine on the all-season patio,which features a sliding glass roof that opens during warmer months.

Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba! is owned by Chef Gabino Sotelino and Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises.
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What Insiders Are Saying

The Infatuation
7.7

Cafe Ba-Ba-Reeba is a tapas restaurant that's been around for a long time. It's ideal for a lot of occasions.

Ratings 7.5-8.0:These are restaurants that are reliable, tasty, and particularly good for whatever we have deemed them “Perfect For.” Hit up a 7.7 for Date Night with confidence, as long as you don’t need the restaurant to be the most interesting thing that happens that night.
What 5498 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.8based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.6
service
4.6
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Moderate
96% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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HR
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

Reeba is always a winning option! Small, fun shareable plates + sangria -- you cannot go wrong!

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JT
Chicago
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent as always!

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M
Chicago
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

LOVE LOVE LOVE. This is one of my all-time favorites, and every time I am there I am reminded why. Great drinks, great food, great service. Cannot recommend enough.

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R
New England
10 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great atmosphere. I thought this was going to be a small quiet tapas restaurant, but I was pleasantly surprised that it was lively, fun, tons of people, etc. Great food, great server, just a fun time. Get the sangria!

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RW
Chicago
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 5

The sangria was great as always, the tapas were fine. The chicken paella however was very disappointing. It was tasteless- not seasoned well and generally boring. It pretty much tasted like a dish I could have made from leftovers at home- rice, chicken and whatever leftover veggies I had in the fridge. It put a damper on the evening in general, because I was really looking forward to the paella all night. Frankly, I took half of the dish home for leftovers, and I don't even feel like eating it. Probably won't come back to this restaurant and if I do, I definitely will stick with the sangria and some sort of combination of tapas. I can however say that the service was great- our server refilled both our wine and water glasses whenever she noticed they were slightly empty, so that was very nice. She was very pleasant and fun.

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NH
Chicago
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Went here for dinner after a show. The food was very good and the atmosphere was fun. Regardless of the following comments, I would for sure recommend it for anyone. But, as an added benefit, there was a Celiac and two people that eat gluten free with us. There was a separate gluten free menu. The waiter was extremely knowledgeable on these topics. He was very careful and no one had any issues afterwards.

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OT
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Came here on the recommendation of a friend. Solid menu and good service. The lighting was low enough that I had to use my phone to see the menu, but that was my only complaint. Good choice for a casual dinner with friends.

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OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Everything was fantastic from the food to our wonderful server Joe.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Overall it was great, i love Baba Reeba. However, service i think it was ok.. i felt rushed when trying to decide what i wanted to order, and she didn’t have a nice attitude about my doubts.

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JH
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Damn good brunch with tons of great tastes. Everyone found something great to enjoy!

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KL
Chicago
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Cafe Ba Ba Reeba is a neighborhood institution in Lincoln Park and it never disappoints. This tapas style restaurant is great for brunch or dinner with friends. I met a friend here for a Saturday brunch and we enjoyed the low-key atmosphere and delicious tapas style menu which is very sharable.

Ba Ba Reeba's brunch offers a great bloody mary bar that has a ton of yummy toppings and your choice of tomato juices and vodka. There are a ton of sweet and savory food options on the menu as well as a gluten free menu so there should be something for everyone.

We enjoyed the brunch portion paella, bacon wrapped dates, nutella waffles, and delicious sangria. Our waitress was wonderful. She took the time to go through the menu with us, made sure that we knew about all the restaurants special offers for that day. She also was great about letting us take our time with the tapas and ordering, and never rushed the dining experience.

This is a tride and true brunch spot. Be sure to make reservations ahead of time. It does get crowded.

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ML
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

very good foof and service. we had a really goid time.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a friendly staff when we come here!

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T
San Diego
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was fabulous. I prefer a place with personality versus a white tablecloth steak house. I was a little leery of Peruvian food and I loved it. Lots of personality to the place. Ingredients were fresh and service was great.

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J
Chicago
17 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our multigenerational family loved our meal. Super professional wait staff. Lots of vegetarian options. Excellent desserts.

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CT
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

The noise level was pretty loud, so I wouldn't recommend for a first date, unless you go before or at their peek hours. The chairs were very uncomfortable!! Other than that the food was delicious!

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N
Chicago
22 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I love Cafe Ba Ba Reeba! It's my go to restaurant in the city.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We ran late for our 6:30 reservation and did not call thus surrendering our table. Nevertheless we were seated within 5 minutes of our late arrival. We had a lovely family dinner and can honestly say that it is our favorite spot.

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AR
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Saturday brunch was great fun! Would go there again in a heartbeat!

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AP
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Phenomenal place. Requested server to sing birthday to Samantha, birthday girl and she had the time of her life!

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JG
Chicago
10 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always great. Such fun, delicious choices. This has been my favorite restaurant for 30 years. Brunch is particularly fun because you get the entire dinner menu plus the brunch choices.

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Good food, excellent goat cheese! Loved it

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TT
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Great place, great food, friendly atmosphere. I have to write more to clear the 50 characters...

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r
Des Moines
1 review
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, reasonably priced, and exceptional service. A little loud, but this comes with a awesome crowded restaurant.

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BS
1 review
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome restaurant to go to! Had a great time with my friend on his birthday

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JC
1 review
Dined on January 4, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

I've been here before and been with the lettuce family for over a year and the food is always phenomenal. The burrata is to die for. Our server, Joe, was a bit unattentive and impersonal but it appears he had a large section. Will be back!

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OT
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 4

I’m a very indecisive person so we took a while to decide on our drink order. The server was a bit pushy and the whole table wasn’t exactly happy with him. Not a bag guy, just didn’t click well with us, that is until he found out one of my friends at the table work for the same Lettuce company. Food was okay, pricey. Had one bite of everything as we shared everything at the table. One bite clearly didn’t do the food justice.

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BF
1 review
Dined on January 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This place is awesome. We had a great experience with the food and the staff.

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OT
Detroit
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great spot to celebrate any special occasion!

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FM
Chicago
4 reviews
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

New Year’s Eve dinner. Service was attentive

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NB
Chicago
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

Good Spanish food, the Bellota is really good and it is always a challenge to find good Spanish ham in the USA. The stew of cheakpeas has been a very good surprise. we recommend it...
we went there with our children and it was a goof compromise for our two generations!

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M
1 review
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Amazing food, amazing service. Ashley was AMAZING and all of her recommendations were spot on. That mushroom and egg special needs to make it to your main menu.

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R
Chicago
16 reviews
Dined on December 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome food and terrific service. Our family enjoyed it with our kids. Everyone gets to try lots of flavors.

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f
Chicago
16 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 3

Nice place and menu with a great variety of foods. We enjoyed most of the dishes, but many seemed over-salted. The table we were seated at was by the kitchen and the noise level made conversation difficult. There was also a speaker directly over the table that added to the noise level. We still enjoyed ourselves and the food as well. Would like to return on a quieter night and taste some other dishes.

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TM
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

We took our Spanish friends here for a birthday celebration and they were thrilled to find a taste of Spain in Chicago. The steak with blue cheese, padron peppers and croquettes were some of our favorites. We also enjoyed trying some interesting Spanish wines.

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OT
Denver
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and great service!!

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C
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 5

Fun times with Christmas bars in the area!

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ML
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 3ambience 5

This is my favorite restaurant in Chicago

Must-haves:
Fried Calamari
Spicy potatoes
Buttermilk fried chicken thighs
Croquettes
Paella

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MB
Chicago
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

I've heard about CBBR for years and have always wanted to visit. It did not disappoint! The menu was eclectic and unique. I shared with my 2 friends a few entrees and small plates. Overall a fun experience and I can't wait for my next visit!

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OT
1 review
Dined on December 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food and sangria is always on par here! Excellent overall experience for a very reasonable price. Everyone in my party was extremely pleased and wants to come again.

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