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My family has been getting Greenberg turkeys longer than I have been alive. It is hands down the best turkey I've ever had. Every year we buy a Greenberg and then a locally made turkey because some in our family just don't like smoked turkey.

Thanksgiving usually turns into a fight over the delicious pepper pockets in the turkey.

Nov 24, 2009
LFrasco in General Topics

Reasonably Priced near Schubas 3159 N. Southport

Just eat at Schubas, it isn't bad, and you can't get any closer. I think they call it the Harmony Grille?

Feb 23, 2008
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Spring, Green Zebra, or Custom House

I actually just returned from Green Zebra tonight, and it completes my tri-fecta of Shawn McClain restaurants.

Of the three, I honestly think Green Zebra is my favorite. I used to be a carnivore, but now I'm mostly vegetarian (I make exceptions for fine meals).

So here is my take on the three. If going with a group, Spring is the most likely to please. The menu is diverse and has some great items. That being said, I was underwhelmed the time I went, but my wife loves it and has been several times.

I went to the Custom House soon after opening and I was extremely disappointed. It is the "meat" restuarant of the three, and you can get a much better steak at a lot of places in Chicago. However, that doesn't mean you shouldn't go. Service was still excellent and I love the atmosphere.

But as I said, Green Zebra was the most exciting of the three. Small plates, very creative dishes, and it is a fun to experience a great meal without meat. Our service was good, the space was small but nice, and we had no complaints.

Also, for fine dining in Chicago, you can't beat the price. My wife and I each had 3 courses, wine, and desserts for $130.

Feb 23, 2008
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Aigre Doux Review

I absolutely love Aigre Doux, I'm glad others are enjoying it. Service is very helpful and attentive as you said, and I have had nothing but great meals there.

It may not be considered in the same breath as some of the big restaurants discussed here, but I'm pretty sure their mission is to be comfort food. It has been my wife and mine consistently favorite date spot because there is no pretention and a comfortable dining experience.

Feb 18, 2008
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Food near Westin on North Michigan

Spiaggia or Spiaggia Cafe (which can be a little cheaper). Also, you aren't far from Quartino's or Osteria Via Stato. I love Quartino's and would recommend it for a fun night out, though maybe not if you want a quiet evening.

Oct 26, 2007
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Frontera/Topolobampo Service

I went to Topolobampo for my third time the other night. While I definitely understand some of the complaints of posts I've read on here (muted flavors and not Mexican enough), I still love it. The dishes convey both a haute cuisine feel but remain true to their roots. I had the Mole tasting menu which was new, and I thoroughly enjoyed the food and wine pairings. The other people in my party got various dishes and all loved them as usual.

However, this may have been my last visit to one of my favorite restaurants. Though there have been one or two stellar waiters in my visits (a few to Topolo and many to Frontera), last night was the worst service I've ever had at a restaurant this nice.

A party of four with reservations, we were seated almost 45 minutes after our reservation time. When we finally did get to sit down, we didn't see a waiter for another 20 minutes. After asking another waiter if he was helping us, someone else finally arrived, dropping off menus and disappearing for another 20 minutes. Finally, a cocktail order was taken. I got my standard Blue Agave Margarita, but once it finally arrived, it was horrid. Everyone in my party had ordered this Margarita at one point and time, and all agreed that something was severely off. So, I spoke to our waiter about it, who then proceeded to tell me that I must have meant to order something else since I couldn't describe what was wrong with it. She suggested several other margaritas that I must have THOUGHT I wanted. She finally, begrudgingly, took it back. Our meal finally did start arriving, and from there on out (almost an hour and a half after our reservation was set for and 2 hours after checking in) the food was delicious and timely, but that may have been because the kitchen was pushing things out and it wasn't our waiter bringing plates to our table.

8:30 reservations. Our first course didn't arrive until almost 10:15 and we ate dessert around 2 hours later. Though I'm all for long meals, the service was so bad it got out of hand. Though the maitre'd did apologize for our late seating initially, it went from bad to worse to slightly better.

While I have no expectation of anything less than a 2 hour wait at Frontera, Topolo should be better than this.

Sep 22, 2007
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Aigre Doux

I have to second nsxtasy's review. My wife and I went last Friday after some of our friends had nothing but good things to say. We both agree it was one of our favorite experiences in Chicago dining and we have tried almost all of the top rated places. Expect to see it in Zagat's top ratings next year.

Feb 19, 2007
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Lunch at Midway airport

Hey, they aren't the best in the world, but personally I like the fish tacos at Lalos right after security. Fish is fried to order usually, and actually not bad. Also, good mexican beer selection if you need to loosen up before the flight.

Sep 08, 2006
LFrasco in Chicago Area

night at mk...hint hint get the papperdelle

Went to mk the other night, kind of an anniversary celebration, kind of just a night out.

To begin the service was perfect, seated immediately, two waiters. No complaints. They even wrote happy anniversary in chocolate on both of our desserts.

Here is the reason to go to mk right now. They have a special papperdelle with morels. It is rich and buttery which may turn some away, but it is almost an exact replica of my favorite dish at Babbo in NYC. Amazing, I had it for my appetizer and my wife had it for her main course. (though I can’t recommend it for the main course as it is a big heavy).

My wife had the salad to start, nothing special but nice and fresh.

For my entree I had whitefish with lobster in a fennel sauce. I’m not a huge fan of fennel, and I can’t really say this was the best entrée ever, but it was good.

Dessert consisted the One Banana, Two Banana which was delicious and my wife had the Rhubarbarella for the second time in two weeks, but it was fantastic too. Though it was a lot of rhubarb and if you aren’t crazy about rhubarb go with something else.

The wine with it all was a basic mk Chardonnay which was really crisp, and I have to recommend it despite its lack of name.

Overall not expensive, nice night out, BUT the point of this whole post is only a recommendation for the paperdelle.

Jun 29, 2006
LFrasco in Chicago Area

best Ethiopian food in Chicago

I second the Ethiopian Diamond recommendation.

Jun 29, 2006
LFrasco in Chicago Area

Vong in Chicago

Personally, I had a mediocre experience at Vong in New York. Actually on the bottom of a long list of favorites from living in New York.

On a side note, I LOVE VTK. I think it is some of the better Thai in downtown area. The dishes are always very fresh and use a bit more diversity in ingredients.

VTK is pretty cheap too, so I can go there regularly for lunch. Service has been spotty from time to time, but I think it was a change for the better.

Jun 29, 2006
LFrasco in Chicago Area

What is with Frontera Grill?????

I have to agree, I love Frontera Grill, but the service has become more and more of a turn off.

While I have never been asked to leave. I have on more than one occassion been told there was a 3+ hour wait. That isn't the service's fault, but why not just take reservations.

The arrogance of the people working there is amazing, the waiters of late have been anything but helpful, and the overall experience has just become bad.

Maybe if I get two or three Blue Agave Margaritas I won't be as mad.

Frontera Fresco will have to suffice.

Jun 29, 2006
LFrasco in Chicago Area