I’ve made no secret of the fact that Boka is one of my favorite restaurants in Chicago or the fact that, at $44 for four courses at a Michelin-starred restaurant, it’s one of the best deals in all of Restaurant Week. Boka is, in fact, the restaurant by which I judge restaurants during Restaurant Week – whether or not I would have rather been at Boka instead. Therefore, I’ve decided to visit Boka three times this year during Restaurant Week in order to sample as much of the menu as possible. For this, my first visit of the year, I’ve chosen a seafood-focused meal progression. Continue reading
For the start of this year’s Restaurant Week, I travelled all the way to The Duck Inn, recipient of a 2016 Bib Gourmand, in Bridgeport. Unlike many restaurants, The Duck Inn doesn’t provide multiple options for most of their Restaurant Week courses – only for the third course. And although the menu seemed rather standard (soup, green salad, pork or chicken for the main course, and crème brûlée for dessert), the food turned out to be interesting and well-executed. The service is also excellent, competent yet warm and welcoming. Continue reading
On the outside, Fulton Market Kitchen doesn’t look like much, nestled among warehouses and loading trucks, farther off the beaten path from their neighbors The Publican and Next, only a block or two away. Inside, however, is a different story entirely, as the restaurant is filled with bold colors and a rotating art collection. The menu, too, is interesting, although it perhaps not as successful as the decor.
With its oyster bar, Loop restaurant Pearl Tavern has a seafood focus. Although possibly one of the better options in the Loop, I think it still relies heavily on its location in Chicago’s financial district and proximity to the theatre district. The food is tasty and nicely plated, but for the price, there are better restaurants in the city.
Table, Donkey and Stick is a small but cosy restaurant with a Bib Gourmand from the Michelin Guide on the edge of Logan Square that, as their website proclaims, honors “the eating and drinking traditions of the Alps.” Their Restaurant Week offering is a three-course dinner for $33 that includes a selection from their Wanderteller menu of charcuterie, an appetizer, and an entrée.
I’m always looking for a good burger and a good dessert, and I’ve read excellent reviews of both at Mindy’s Hot Chocolate. In particular, Mindy Segal is known for being one of the best pastry chefs in Chicago, perhaps even the entire country, so I’ve been meaning to make my way out to her Bucktown restaurant for quite some time. I enjoyed my meal there during Restaurant Week, so I planned a couple additional return trips later in the year. Continue reading
NAHA is Carrie Nahabedian’s Michelin-starred restaurant in River North. The atmosphere had that white tablecloth, fine dining feel, but it wasn’t as luxurious as The Lobby, nor did it have as much personality as Sepia or Boka. The tables were very close together, and it was surprisingly loud, even without music. Given all of its accolades, I had such high expectations for NAHA, but it ended up being one of the most disappointing restaurant experiences I’d had in quite some time. Continue reading