Recent Reviews

Re: “Ina's

When I made the reservation,the phone was answered by a warm friendly voice saying "This is Ina...". For a moment I thought I called her home by accident, but later I realized that Ina treats all of her customers more like houseguests than "paying strangers". Upon arrival at her near west side location, our large group was seated immediately, and baskets of warm breads and muffins were passed out, along with my all time breakfast favorite ... piping hot carafes of coffee! There was a high chair set up for our 2 1/2 year old, as requested, which made thing very easy for us. The decor is eclectic, (with an emphasis on Ina's collection of salt and pepper shakers)there are painted, exposed brick walls and lots of wood, though the restaurans is also light and open.
After my caffeine level was back up to normal, I could review the menu, which was surprisingly small for a breakfast type place. While almost everything sounded tempting, I think there were less than a fifteen or so things to choose from; this was not a problem for us though. The ordering process was a bit delayed seeing as how it was terribly busy and we were a large party, and, honestly, service in general was a bit slow. A nice touch was that Ina herself came over, welcomed us and explained the menu, noting the fact that substitutions are available, and even encouraged.
I chose the polenta with peppers, with two eggs any style and sausage (I went for veal & herb links). The food was cooked as requested, and everything was incredibly fresh. One of our group ordered the "heavenly hots" which were (as explained by Ina) a cross between crepes and pancakes ... and amazingly delicious! They practically melted in your mouth - or at least the small bites that I could steal before he cleaned his plate did. Everyone else was happy with their chosed dishes too. Unlike most other breakfast places, though, these were not huge portions overflowing the plate. We were all satisfied, but not stuffed. I see this as a good thing, though people expecting overflowing plates at this not so inexpensive place might be disappointed.
The crowd was a bit loud, with a nice mix of families and couples, from young to old. The fresh food, home style atmoshpere and private parking lot makes Ina's a breakfast favorite.

Posted by Rocky Levy on 09/26/2001 at 12:35 PM

Re: “Lovell's of Lake Forest

Hmmmm. This was a good restaurant in general. The food was fresh and tasted great. The atmoshpere, however, was very "stuffy", not in a rude way, just a "we think we are in the upper crust of America and can smoke these stinky cigars" kinda way. So, is this a good place? Yes. Is this a place you should leave the city to go to? No. Can you find food as good with an infinitely better atmosphere in the city? Yes, on every block. The only redeeming quality? The only restaurant I've been to that has a moon rock in the basement.

Posted by Rocky Levy on 05/22/2000 at 2:16 PM

Re: “Bistro Ultra

We don't often "love" fish, but both the Salmon and the Tilapia (special) were excellent! Prepared well, sauces not overwhelming.. good stuff. I still can't believe the guy held our table (we were 10 min.late)... there was a couple at the bar complaining that the reservations were being held and the walk-ins had to wait. This almost never happens in a tiny restaurant!The wine list had many interesting selections by the glass. We will be back!

Posted by Rocky Levy on 04/03/2000 at 11:50 AM

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