Touted by Lettuce Entertain You spot as a "coffeehouse and neighborhood restaurant," Beatrix is in fact a restaurant and coffee shop in the new River North boutique hotel Aloft. There, just off the lobby, it tries to supply a tourist or business traveler's every need, from eye-opener to nightcap. The juice bar didn't disappoint; the Dr. Defense, with apple, cinnamon, and black pepper, was a cidery intro to fall flavors, while the Blue Boost (blueberry juice, white grape juice, and basil) distilled the last of summer. Another good bet is coffee to go and a baked good like the not-too-sweet house-made graham cracker or an indulgently sized peanut butter cookie. Breakfast dishes weren't quite so satisfactory: mealy overripe peaches marred the otherwise outstanding waffles with vanilla syrup and whipped cream, and the so-called Spicy Chicken Tinga, served with eggs and corn tortillas, wasn't spicy in the slightest. But a breakfast sandwich of pot roast and egg on rosemary focaccia would see you well into lunch, when a pot roast sandwich is also available, along with a burger, sandwiches, and typically punny LEYE items such as turkey "neatloaf." Dinner brings more comfort food, more expensively, and with more than a whiff of the industrial test kitchen.
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