Here in Logan Square, the best option for Chinese remains Friendship Chinese; a French/Chinese hybrid that seems to win as many enemies as friends. Consider me a friend. Anyway, for the past few months, Friendship has been doing special event evenings of food and music, playing on the Eurasion fusion theme of the food, called "East Meets West." The evening includes a multi-course menu and Eastern and Western music performed on traditional Chinese instruments (including "Dust in the Wind" played on the yata). It's a really good time, and they are doing another one on March 27. You'll need to make a reservation; these things do sell out.
Here's a review I posted on eGullet of the dinner my wife and I attended at the end of January; the menu will be changing for the March 27 dinner:
"This was an amazing event and hopefully it (or something like it) will be repeated soon at Friendship. The place was packed, and it was a proper celebration -- Friendship made it into a belated Chinese New Year, with red envelopes and takeaway favors (little red chop suey boxes with a tiny buddha and a red fortune scroll). The staff were decked out in shimmery dresses; the lighting was romantic; and at $40 a head, and BYOB, this was without question one of the best deals for a fixed price/tasting meal I've ever had. A comparable level of kitchen artistry and server orchestration would probably be $70 or more at a "trendier" spot. Highlights here included the scallop appetizer, a HUGE specimen in a super buerre blanc with crispy leeks; roasted lobster claw and tail that led to many amusing moments for a pair of lobster neophytes (the lobster was stupendous); and the poached pear dessert, from which one popped off the "lid" (stem portion of the pear) to reveal a homemade vanilla ice center (possible infused with something like green tea?). It was a right proper banquet, and the music was also a real treat. The musicians were truly virtuosic (can't believe anyone can get that many notes out of a two stringed instrument, for example). Sorry for all those who didn't make it; here's hoping next time more do! "
Here's the menu planned for March 27:
Panko Crusted Crab Cake on Watercress with Szechwan Chili Aioli
Seafood Cream of Corn Soup with Lobster Broth
Peking Duck Wrap and Duck Confit in Taro Root Basket with Mandarin Orange Grand Marnier Sauce
Pan Seared Chilean Sea Bass on Seaweed Salad with Gingered Sweet Soy and Chili Oil
Wok Roasted Mushroom Caps on Chicken Flavored Sticky Rice
Ginger-Scented Tofu Cheese Cake and Sweet Purple Yam Ice Cream with Raspberry Coulis.
Sounds really good to me at $40/person. And, it's BYO. But you MUST make a reservation to attend. They are in the book (I'd print the number here, but I'm afraid I'll be accused of shilling).
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