***** (5 stars)
Even though it had only been open a few weeks when we visited, this place hit a home run as far as we were concerned. The decor is spectacular, certainly the most beautiful restaurant in Chicago. The ambiance is great, too, with a cool soundtrack at just the right level, and enough acoustic treatment to keep the general din manageable, even when it is packed.
We tried a lot of dishes and loved each one. The concept here is really geared toward sharing, and not just family style. Most of the dishes we ordered came with four discrete items, so it would be perfect for business dining, too, as there is no awkwardness involved in the sharing process.
We started with the seafood tower, an extravaganza of lobster, crab, shrimp and oysters that was perfect for three or four to share. The shellfish had all been carefully separated from the shell which made it easy to eat. At $125 it was very reasonably priced for the amount of seafood included.
Next we had the hamachi. Although described as being served in plum sauce, it wasn’t sweet at all, but had a nice citrus component that perfectly complemented the delicate fish.
Whipped avocado toast was also excellent, with a nice light avocado mixture and greens atop tasty, slightly charred sourdough.
The chicken pot pies were a clever presentation, with delicate puff pastry we filled ourselves from the accompanying cast iron dish. This kept the pastry flaky until we were ready for it.
Patty melts were a nice, filling way to end the meal. The dish included four individual sliders, each with a generous serving of perfectly cooked burger, melted cheese, grilled bread, and the pickle on top, in case you didn’t want it.
I honestly wouldn’t have changed a thing about any of these courses; they were perfect.
We finished with a dessert described as a Yuzu curd, although it was closer to key lime pie. It was fine, but not my favorite.
The wine list is extensive and fairly priced, and there are some interesting wines by the glass.
The service was professional, friendly and attentive at all levels, including waitstaff, front desk, and manager.
817 W Lake St
Chicago, IL 60607