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CLOSED. Prix fixe-only restaurant offering a changing European-influenced menu from which diners choose a three-course meal.

Our Review

This earnest, modest little spot from a pair of culinary-school instructors recently returned to the game boasts an extremely narrow concept: a three-course local and seasonal set menu featuring a choice of apps, three entrees, and three desserts. Owners John Fuente and Alisa Gaylon and a crew made up of student externs operate from a small open kitchen in the rear of a dining room decorated with black-and-white Chicagoscapes on the north wall and French scenes on the south. So far, while the ambition of the dishes runs toward a conservative European-inspired curriculum, execution is less predictable. Some items on a recent evening came to the table stale-tasting (cheese straws) or cold (a potato-topped flatbread) while others—such as a perfectly acceptable lyonnaise salad or crispy griddled polenta cakes with a winning salad of braised celery hearts and shallots—showed promise. Still others were just head-scratching, like a charred puck of “caramelized blue cheese” and a spaghetti carbonara with no evident egg or cheese. The good news: the current (but not permanent) BYOB status, the very reasonable $35 price tag, and the frequently updated menu ought to encourage multiple visits, provided the cooking graduates.

Mike Sula

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Price: $$$
Payment Type: MasterCard, Visa, AmEx, Discover

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