Had dinner last night at Mon Ami Gabi in Oakbrook Mall next to Maggiano's. Their claim to fame is that they are a "French Bistrot". Menu is abbreviated and does not offer a great selection of plates, but it is enough to select from. Wife ordered "hanger steak" coooked rare with merlot butter -- all steaks come with "frites". However, these are not what one would expect and seem to be more like potato shards fried crisp. You can't sink your teeth into a potato-tasting "french-fry", as there is almost no potato in what they serve. Why not call them "fried potato bits" to be more honest? We told the manager of our disappointment with the "frites" and he said that was their "signature" dish --- time to change your handwriting, folks! We spend lots of time in France and have never EVER had anything as inedible as these. Even the least pretentious resto routier in France would prepare and serve better frites! My suggestion is to ask for a small plate of "frites" to review, and if you find them as described above, tell them you want something else to accompany your steak.
By the bye, the steak was cooked properly and very tasty. I had the skate and it was quite good: seemed to have been lightly dusted with flour, then sauteed lightly and broiled a bit after. Served with home-made potato chips which had a lot more potato to sink your teeth into than the "frites". Accompanied by a warm mixture of green beans, radish, and what might have been jicama (not sure what it was, but the light taste of vinegar assisted the skate very well).
An observation: this restaurant was slightly up-scale, but it appears that many diners think that shrimp cocktail and "frites" are finger food. When you have 2 forks in front of you, they are intended to be used to pick up the food you ordered. Get your finger food at a McDonald's.
Has anyone has similar experience on the "frites" in other Mon Ami Gabi locations, or is this an aberration?