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Chicago Area Pre-Theater

Pre-theater at Restaurant 312

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Pre-theater at Restaurant 312

RevrendAndy | Mar 20, 2004 08:49 AM

I had a very nice dinner with my alleged wife at Restaurant 312 before being possibly the last person to see Phantom of the Opera at the Cadillac Palace Theater(which by the way was an outstanding show). There's been some mixed reviews about this place, but considering there are so few restaurants to eat at within walking distance of the theater district, you can't beat this for convienence. Of course, Ronnie's Steak House always looms large.

We started with a mixed basket of bread including sourdough and rosemary foccacia. The bread was average however it was served with a sundried tomato tapenade which I ended up eating with my spoon.

Our appetizers were grilled calamari with arugula, roasted tomatoes, and balsamic and a honey-marinated grilled quail with toasted pistachios, orange, dates, and pomegranite. Both were outstanding-the calamari very tender and the quail cooked medium rare.

I followed with a nice artichoke puree soup with a pristine, fresh artichoke flavor and no added cream.

Lana had a spit-roasted duck with grilled apricots, watercress, and pickled red onion. The duck was cooked perfectly and was extremely juicy with a crisp skin. How can you beat that? My entree was the only mediocre dish of the evening-braised swordfish involtini with spicy peperonata, couscous, and olives. My wife liked the sauce more than me but I thought everything was just bland about this dish. Fortunately, she was nice enough to cough up some duck(not literally!). We opted not to have dessert, though a chocolate coconut tart with caramel sauce was beckoning to me.

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