Hi all, just wanted to share my three dinners with you since I so appreciated all of your posts when we were planning our first trip to Chicago in May. We didn't go as far as planning lunches, just the dinners.
Our first meal was Topolobampo, I had read quite a bit about Chicago's modern Mexican scene and although I always am a bit wary of a "celebrity chef" restaurant, we made reservations for our first night there. It was excellent, and such a treat to experience a type of cuisine that we are not adequately exposed to in Toronto. There were points where both my husband and I put our forks down and closed our eyes just to try to savour and pinpoint the complex flavours. We paired each course with a glass of the sommelier's recommendation, and would highly reccomend that as a way to go - maybe a bit more expensive than a single bottle but it certainly enhanced each course.
Second night was Sable Kitchen & Bar - we wanted a fun place, with good food, and i LOVE small plates - a chance to taste everything. Great atmosphere - hopping bar when you come in, busy but not too crowded, great energy. We ate in the back area and the service was excellent - tried cocktails, a New Mexico sparkling wine, and then moved on to the food. Food was FANTASTIC - and the small plates meant we were not overstuffed (although my husband did order a second round of devilled eggs). The creme brulee corn was a little too sweet for a main (for my tastes), but we ate and enjoyed every single speck of every other dish. A nice change from the quiet, more formal tone from the previous evening.
We ended up coming BACK to Sable for breakfast the next day because it was open at 8, we are early risers, and it was around the corner from our hotel. (and also because my husband saw fresh donuts on the menu and almost lost his mind at the thought). Egg dishes were very food, the oatmeal was very sub-par, the warm donuts were great.
Last night, my husband's big request was ONE steakhouse in Chicago, so we went to David Burke. Really, it was so merely adequate. The steak was good, so if you're there just for the steak, then you'll be happy. The lighting was bright and harsh, they had vinyl tableclothes, the "bacon bar" was one choice of bacon on a stick, they packed the tables in so tight that they couldn't wheel the "tableside caesar" cart to the table, and the "truffle fries" were like something you'd get at Chilis. For the money, we had far superior meals at the other two restaurants.
Thanks for all of your help planning, we LOVED LOVED LOVED Chicago , had so much fun our first time there, we will be back!