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Thoughts about Fonda Del Mar and/or Carnivale?

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Hello! Contemplating one of these two restaurants for this week... Anyone been to both or either? Thoughts? Thanks!

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  1. I think Fonda is the best Mexican food in Chicago, hands down. In fact, we went to Fonda after returning from Mexico this winter, and had a better meal there than we'd had all week. FYI, It's crowded on the weekends, and make sure you BYOB.

    :)

    1. We've been to Carnivale twice in the last few months. Everything that we have eaten has been delicious. I highly recommend it---especially the rum-glazed pork dish, the braised beef appetizer and the shrimp ceviche. It has become one of our favorite restaurants. The restaurant is beautiful.

      1. I recommend trying Carnivale at least once, if not for the food, then at least for the overall experience/ambiance/hype/decor. It's like none I've experienced in Chicago -- just beautiful with colors that stimulate the palate. Food is with a twist and make sure to try the delicious mojitos. This is a place that I can't wait to revisit, although depending on your crowd, it is not the intimate of places.

        1. Our entire group thought that Fonda Del Mar was mediocre and expensive for the area. It was only a few months since it opened though. I'll give it another chance.

          Definitely try Carnivale.

          1. I have been to both spots. Carnivale is a typical Kleiner restuarant in terms of its decor. It is a huge venue that feels more intimate with different rooms to sit in. Margaritas are good. Food is a bit overrated and on the expensive side. Finda is small--expect a wait. Food is decent here--better than Carnivale I think and I like the smaller space better, although tables are close together. Depends on what youa re up for--Carnivale is much trendier--better for people watching.

            1. I vote for Carnivale as well. Just have been there once, but it was a great time. Good food, wonderful ambiance, and decent service. Just a lot of "wow" factor when you walk into the place.