Thursday, February 14, 2008

North Pond

Most guys just buy their women flowers or chocolates on Valentine's but my boyfriend got me great reservations for an early celebration. Thanks babe!

I have been DYING to go to North Pond. I've lived in Lincoln Park off and on for 5 years, walked by it a hundred times and haven't even stepped foot inside to have a drink! Well, my time has finally come.

North Pond is named after the pond it sits by in Lincoln Park (the actually park!) and has gorgeous views of Chicago's skyline. The chef, Bruce Sherman, is highly accliamed and won numerous nods from the Beard Foundation. He was born and Chicago and makes maximum use of local and organic ingrediants on his menus.

We were seated in a room built of brick and wood that had a fireplace and it felt very cozy. Gazing outside on an unusually snowy park made us feel as though we were dining somewhere off HWY 70 in the Rocky Mountains that we love so much.

Drew orded the venison and I think he almost licked his plate. He started with the celery root and apple purree soup with crab butter ball and cashews. I found it to be a bit sweet but he enjoyed it and I am a sucker for table side presentation. I ordered the soft-boiled farm egg with spinich coulis and parmesan emulsion. I'm a huge egg fan so I loved this and the yolk mixed beautifully with the foam.

For dinner I ordered the fruit and nut encrusted squab with roasted sunchokes and wild huckleberry sauce. Now, this had a ton of potential but it just missed the mark. For some reason they had the squab wrapped in philo dough which wasn't crispy enough. It was actulally kind tough and I ended up just picking everything out. But you can't beat huckleberries and our waiter was very knowledgable all around. Turns out you can get quail eggs at Treasure Island Market and the Chef got his huckleberries in late August from Washington State and preserved them. Who knew?

The service here is the type of service I love; on the spot but relaxed and unpretentious. I wish Alinea was the same....

Head on over to North Pond and get a taste of Lincoln Park. By the way, the people watching is great...

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