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Special Restaurant for Anniversary Dinner?

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I'm going to be in the Chicago area for my anniversary in a few weeks. I'll be staying with my husband's family in Deerfield. We're actually there to celebrate husband's nephew's bar mitzvah. I'm sure everyone's focus is going to be on that, so I don't want to pressure my BIL and his family to choose a nice romantic restaurant for us. It's not up to them to see to it that we a little time to ourselves to celebrate our anniversary in Chicago or in the Deerfield area. That's why I'm asking for help here.

We don't want to spend huge amounts of money. We're not looking for anything really pricey, but we don't want a chain restaurant (or chain restaurant quality) either. The $50-$100 per person range is what we can afford.

Places that specialize in steak or seafood aren't a good idea since he doesn't eat the former and I don't eat the latter.

We eat most cuisines: Italian, French, Chinese, Thai, Indian, Latin American, etc. We're pretty open as to type. As long as it has good food, a nice atmosphere, and good service, the actual cuisine is unimportant.

I've only been to the Chicago area a couple of times, so I know diddlysquat about the food scene and what the best restaurants in the area are.

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  1. You have way too many options. You are looking for a decent italian / French / Chinese / Thai / Indian / latin american place in Chicago or the Deerfield area. No chain or chain -like food places 50-100.00 per. That ruleset would return a VERY big list of places. Please try to whittle the criteria down. Maybe by area? Will you be doing anything else on the date of your anniv dinner? Where? If the where part does not matter, then possibly rank your preference of cuisine?

    3 Replies
    1. re: gordeaux

      Sorry. I didn't mean to intimidate. I thought maybe people in the area had a favorite restaurant. I know if someone asked me the same thing for restaurants in my area, I could come up with a few special ones. I live in the NYC area and I could recommend several good restaurants using those criteria for both my area and for Manhattan.

      I won't be doing anything else the night of the dinner. My husband would like prefer Italian, French or American to anything more exotic (although if someone had a FANTASTIC recommendation for something more exotic, he'd go for it). My general experience with the Deerfield area hasn't been that impressive, but I don't go there that often, so there may be gems I'm missing. If there is really nothing that great, I'm willing to make the trip into Chicago.

      Make more sense?

      1. re: Avalondaughter

        Lets start with Deerfied then. I'm not familiar with the area, but I found this link: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/360966

        BTW, the search engine is a wonderful thing :)

        1. re: Avalondaughter

          No apology needed whatsoever, and no intimidating was done.
          Deerfield area Italian:
          Osteria de Tramonto
          The Westin Chicago North Shore hotel
          601 N. Milwaukee Avenue
          Wheeling, IL, 60090
          This place MIGHT be a little bit better:
          Tuscany
          550 S. Milwaukee Ave.
          Wheeling, IL 60090
          Phone: 847.465.9988
          Fax: 847.465.8446
          http://www.stefanirestaurants.com/tus...

          =========
          A little more laid back:
          Francesco's Hole in the Wall
          254 Skokie Blvd., Northbrook
          Tel: (847) 272-0155
          (Cash only, at this place, by the way!
          )====================
          French:
          You could easily exceed the 100 limit here:
          Carlos
          429 Temple
          Highland Park, IL
          847-432-0770
          www.carlos-restaurant.com
          ===============
          Not too far away, and less expensive, but still good:
          Le Titi De Paris
          1015 W Dundee Rd
          Arlington Hts, IL 60004
          http://www.letitideparis.com
          Rec for more exotic? Not in Deerfield area, sorry.

          I'd rec a Thai place in Chicago, but you can probably do very well for thai in nyc, no? For places in the City, you can search some of the very recent posts, and probably easily come up with some ideas for French / American / Italian. I'm blanking on something interesting not so easily found in NY for you as a rec for Chicago dining. I'll ponder, and post if I can come up with something. - We DO have a new-ish upscale Indian place. Never been yet ( I think ambience is over-rated
          )Marigold
          4832 N. Broadway
          773.293.GOLD
          http://www.marigoldrestaurant.com

          How would upscale Mexican float your boat? Not too many upscale Mex places around the country. We have a few. Bayless, of course at Topo / Frontera:
          http://www.fronterakitchens.com/resta...

          Also:
          Salpicon (I prefer Bayless' stuff to this place, but Salpicon gets love from many
          )1252 N Wells St
          Chicago, IL 60610
          Phone: (312) 988-7811
          Fax: (312) 988-7715
          There are a few more of these in funky locations..OOh here's one:
          Fonda del Mar
          3749 W Fullerton Ave
          Chicago, IL 60647
          773 489-3748

          I'm sure others can add...

      2. I would suggest Michael in Winnetka. We went there for my birthday last December and had the best meal I had in 2006. We will be going back again this year. The tab should be well within your price range.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Chicagojet

          Wow, Chicagojet took the words right out of my mouth. Including the "best meal I had in 2006" part. Michael is very close to Deerfield. I posted a complete report on my wonderful dinner there in this topic: www.chowhound.com/topics/119164

        2. I don't know much about Deerfield, but one of my favorite Italian restaurants is Campagnola in Evanston. The atmosphere is relaxed, super friendly, very cozy and the food is wonderful! I love it. Also, Evanston is a charming area that might be fun to walk around for you

          As for places on the northside of Chicago, I'd recommend Rose Angelis on Wrightwood. Again, a very laid back and friendly place that serves great food. The inside has murals on the wall ala Italian village. It is quite cozy as well