An eclectic Blackbird

On my last night in Chicago I decided to visit a truly local restaurant. Blackbird here I come, fasten your seatbelt.

The setting and crowd is rather eclectic. However, I do not mind from time to time loud and crowded restaurants. My neighbors in such places often make for interesting conversations to listen to and sometimes after a few wines I’m known to jump in. I would not recommend this setting for a romantic setting or if you need to discuss important matters that require too much attention, the noise level and proximity of others is prevalent.

Alors! Enough of atmospheric critiques now, to the food. Service from the time I sat down was impeccable, attention to details didn’t lack for even a second..

I started with foie gras torchon. Not too long ago a “no no” in Chicago. Can you believe that? Foie gras banned in such a food destination? Ils sont fous!

The foie gras was beautifully presented. I would have put warm sliced toasted bread on the plate, but that is me. The foie gras was good, maybe a little buttery which took away from a deeper foie gras flavor that I prefer. Still I was happy. I also thought it could have used a little coarse sea salt. C’est la vie! But there were no salt or pepper shakers on the table. The chef must think his preparations are perfect, a common occurrence among us chefs.

I earlier mentioned the proximity of the guests. To my right was this young couple. The gentleman was trying to impress his beautiful date by taking her to such a nice establishment. I could tell by his handling of the utensils that he had not been too exposed to epicurean endeavors and its related traditions. Henri, you are a snob! I know, but I do not care. Anyway, he whispered that my foie gras probably contained more fat than three Big Macs. At this time and after two wines I could not help myself and jumped in. Sir, are you really comparing foie gras to big macs? The taste is rather different. After he admitted that he really liked the big Macs better, I knew then the cute girl deserved better.

But after enjoying the appetizer, the kitchen brought out the lamb saddle. The dish was cooked perfectly- I truly enjoyed it. Nothing to critique, rather praise it. It came with salsify that I love and not many people use it correctly anymore.  The chef also put a touch of licorice root in there to give it a twist. The flavors were deep and very delicate at the same time, a difficult thing to attain in cooking. All the ingredients were well blended creating a marvelous end result.

I finished the meal with a cheese platter. It was good, not quite to French standards, but good.

I recommend this eatery for the quality of the food. Keep in mind the noise level and comfort settings.

A bientot.