Sunday, June 10, 2012

FC Nibble: Fine Dining in Chi-Town

Pin It Living in such a food-centric city and admittedly being a little food obsessed can sometimes make traveling disappointing. How many times have you tried the new hot spot in DC, Boston or the Bay Area and thought to yourself that the restaurants in NYC could have done it better? While I have experienced some great meals around the country (and around the world) this has crossed my mind more than once.

However, on a recent trip to Chi-Town I went all out and wasn't disappointed!

Girl and the Goat

With a Top Chef alumni (Stephanie Izard) in the open kitchen, the Presidential seal of approval and a 6-8 week reservation waiting list, the Girl and the Goat is the definition of a hot spot. The well-balanced dishes left nothing to be desired and neither did the ambiance or service. Some highlights for me included the goat empanadas, fall-off-the-bone pork ribs and a scallop dish with a modern ‘briskety’ bolognese sauce (it may sound like too much but I swear it was just perfect).

Note - don't spoil your appetite on the homemade bread. While it’s delicious, save room for the actual food, trust me it’s worth it.

Graham Elliot

This avant-garde restaurant is definitely a special occasion spot, but far from stuffy when it comes to atmosphere. My friends and I indulged in the 9 course tasting menu, which had a little something for everyone. Each dish was elegantly prepared with the intricacy of a complex science experiment and when mixed together created a truly unique experience in your mouth - particularly the foie gras covered in watermelon flavored pop rocks!!

Of the 9 courses the ones stuck out for me most were: a crab two ways (leg and sausage) with butter, coconut and BBQ seasonings: a melt-in-your-mouth risotto with artichokes, basil and truffles; and a redfish which was REDIC with ramps, tomatoes and capers.

For dessert, we were served a liquid donut. No that is not a typo… it is actually a cold soup-like concoction that tastes like a freaking donut! It was one of those desserts that you just have to try and reminds me that food isn’t just about taste, nourishment, or an excuse to be with good friends and drink wine. It’s about imagination and pushing limits.

Girl and the Goat
809 W Randolph St. Chicago IL, 60607
(312) 492-6262 

Graham Elliot
217 W Huron St Chicago Il 60654