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Restaurants & Bars

Le Vichyssois

Bill | Feb 5, 2005 07:48 AM

If ever there was a race between a glacier melting in Greenland and the serving of the courses at Le Vichyssois, the glacier would be liquefied before a single serving of soup was brought to the table!

On a recent Saturday night, the average time it took between courses was a half-hour. The place wasn't packed and the food wasn't that complex (how long does it take to slop that scoop of sorbet in a dish?).

Speaking of the food, when the lobster and clam bisque finally found its way from the ocean shores to our table, it was so hot that it could have sped up that aforementioned glacier. Spilling hot coffee from McD's in one's lap would be like a cooling mist from a spray can of Evian compared to that blistering soup. Come on, Le V, let that stuff cool down. I guess, though, that if it would have been allowed to cool down, it may well have been midnight before we saw it, further prolonging the long-awaited ending of this excruciating night.

Our party of four was served nothing memorable--the salads were uninspired, the venison was drenched in a sauce better reserved for ribs, and that evening's "special" lobster presentation was more like "the kind-of okay but not really special" lobster dish. And it would be more fitting to change the spelling from "martini" to "marTEENY" which appropriately describes the size of the overpriced drink.

To be fair (fair also being the rating that I would give the crab gallette), our server was friendly, but having long, long breaks between our courses probably gave her plenty of time to rest up and get recharged.

The place is dull; looking like maybe it was a special place to be back during the Ford Administration. I had been warned that it was a place that seemingly was resting on its laurels, and I now agree, but with one addition: Le Vichyssois needs to go out for a permanent rest. It sure almost put me to sleep.

There are way too many places in the Chicagoland area to have good French food with decent service and a little bit more enthusiasm. This place seems like it's just waiting for its customers to die off (they sure aren't looking to add new ones) so that they can finally call it a night (a really, really, REALLY long night).

By the way, I would have rather given the place a one-and-a-half star rating, but I gave it a two. I'll throw in the extra half, to match the half-hour that it took between courses.

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