Recent Reviews

Re: “Wakamono Sushi Bar

Chicago is not lacking for sushi restaurants, but Wakamono is a standout. They advertise the fact that the sushi is "jet-fresh," and it really tastes like it. The special rolls, such as the Godzilla roll, are mouthwatering and well presented, and even the typical maki rolls, such as yellowtail and eel, are singularly delicious. They are also, as a nice bonus, much bigger than a typical roll - quite generous pieces of fish in each roll. There are several other good sushi restaurants in the area - New Tokyo is an example - so the competition is fierce, but Wakamono is definitely a standout for the Lakeview neighborhood.

Posted by Marc Wasserman on 05/27/2007 at 9:22 PM

Re: “North Pond

North Pond couldn't be in a prettier location, with a gorgeous view of the Lincoln Park pond and the surrounding trees. While sitting in a chair and looking outside, you'd think you were in the forest somewhere rather than in the heart of Chicago.

The building is beautiful, and there's a lot of cute details - there's a North Pond "font" that is used on the menu and the quotes on the wall, as well, if it's your birthday, to wish you a happy birthday on the menu itself and on the dessert plate, which is a very cute touch (they even let us keep the menu afterwards.)

The food is superb - I had the halibut, for example, and it was flaky and delicious and in a "soup" of delicious and unusual vegetables.

The only knock - on our visit, the service was a bit difficult. I don't know if we had a particular personality conflict with our waitress, but she was visibly annoyed by us asking for warmer bread and for a different glass of wine - she actually rolled her eyes - and I thought that was odd.

But otherwise, a really excellent place.


Posted by Marc Wasserman on 05/03/2007 at 8:15 AM

Re: “312 Chicago

312 Chicago is an excellent pre-theater choice given its location. It's a very nice room, beautifully decorated. The dinner itself, however, is fairly average given the prices. It's not bad by any means, but there's nothing here that's particularly going to "wow" you. I wouldn't go here if I didn't have tickets to the Cadillac Palace Theater or the Civic Opera House right afterwards. However, if you do, this is a reasonable choice for pre-theater dining.

Posted by Marc Wasserman on 05/03/2007 at 8:08 AM

Re: “Quartino

Quartino is a good restaurant with some excellent advantages and some disadvantages. The clear advantages are the food, which is genuinely excellent and very flavorful, from the delicious appetizers to the very generous pizzas and pastas, and the remarkably good price for all of those. The disadvantages are the incredible noise upstairs, partially due to the conversation rippling across metal walls and the very - sometimes ridiculously - closely spaced tables, and as a result, sometimes slightly difficult service. But still, despite all that, for a nice Italian restaurant in downtown, this is definitely one of the better ones, and I would certainly go back.

Posted by Marc Wasserman on 04/07/2007 at 12:14 AM

Re: “Trattoria Roma

Trattoria Roma is kind of average as Italian restaurants go in most respects. There's not a lot of seating area, the food is reasonably good, the service is OK. It's a good place to go for Italian dinner if you're going to theater nearby - Second City or a movie at Piper's Alley, for example - but it's not particularly memorable otherwise. Pluses include a nice ambiance (it does look like a little Italian villa), reasonable prices, and an unusual wine selection. Minuses include a rather typical listing of food - no specials - and some cramped tables. Again, decent, but not spectacular.

Posted by Marc Wasserman on 01/27/2007 at 11:59 PM

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Recent Comments

Re: “North Pond

North Pond is located in one of the most beautiful sites for a restaurant in all of Chicago, with an amazing view. The interior is nice and cabin-like, with "nature" phrases on the wood panels. The waiter was very friendly and service was excellent.

Both entrees, a vegetable dish and the salmon were excellent - the salmon particularly so, with a silky quality that was just superb. The dessert was equally pleasant.

The only objection I had was the selection of wines; I asked for a wine to go with my salmon and they immediately leaped to the most expensive one. When I tried it and didn't particularly like the taste, they looked at me like there was something wrong with me and said, "well, there are some other wines, I suppose..." which struck me as a little odd.

However, other than that, it's a very pleasant dining experience. This is not somewhere you'd want to go casually, though - this would make a good place to "pop the question," an anniversary place, or a special occasion type of restaurant, especially given the fairly high prices.

Posted by Marc Wasserman on 05/02/2005 at 11:09 PM

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