La Grange - Bistro 108 Report
The Chow Gods must read these posts is all I can fathom.
And having read my review of a beyond awful meal last Friday http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/568960 . . . took pity on me and led me to Bistro 108 in La Grange today which has indeed renewed my faith that good food can exist in out-of-the-way places.
What a lovely little place. Reminds me of some of the cozier nooks in Chelsea or G Village NY. Small space, intimate, with the ability for the chefs to see the expressions on the faces of the diners when they tuck in.
I have to say the expressions today were of extreme pleasure.
This place has been recommended herein before, and I heartily second it. With only a few misses this was one of the better meals I've had recently. And it was good value and very fairly priced.
For around 14.75 Sunday (b)lunch of prime rib (other choices liek roast chicken and pork loin etc) , horseradish, choice of slde or fruit, plus 2 choices of vegetables, dessert. Only drinks are on top.
The service was good and courses arrived from the waiter you'd ordered from. What a breath of fresh air these days.
Again ref the place above, the bread was cold (well the first lot was) and clearly made on the premises, with the correct heavy knarly texture you want with a European-style meal. It was so good we asked for a refresh, but in this case "This is still warm fresh out of the oven." Hmmm.
But really, my wife had a very nice Bellini cocktail and wine of good quality (no hard liquor here, a shame actually as a cognac or armagnac or grappa might hit the spot after a full dinner) and fair price.
The only negative was that the MOMENT one ate the last morsel they were after your plates. I do dislike this quite a lot, not to mention taking one person's plate while others are still eating. But at this stage, it's old news and never will change in the US.
But I tell you this is a really nice little bistro (is the right word for it) which after a Halloween dinner that even had Michael Myers showed up could not have been made more scary and hideous, here comes the most unexpected thing and thank you Chow Gods for taking pity on me I guess.
Brunch for 2 was $48 plus tip. Most reasonable. Only other quibble is that the meat to vegetable ratio was off. About 30% more meat and less vegetables would have been better (just to balance, not as a meat-hog move the portion of meat could be same, but there were too many vegetables is what I am saying). Even though the choice of vegetables (all different styles like German potatoes clearly made from . . . potatoes . . . and spinach casserole and an interesting thing with squash (maybe pumpkin).was exceptional and well thought out.
Dessert was a choice fo English sherry trifle, banana pudding or some pie. No doubt this all revolves and changes: it appears that sort of place.
Casual habitual readers of bb posts must be shocked. A place he actually LIKED! But yes, and enough that I will return. I think though their hours are skewed only towards weekends. Check their web site is the best idea.
Off the square (just off) in central La Grange.
On a subsequent visit (Sat lunch) I was much less impressed. Perhaps they do Sunday Brunch a step up from regular lunch. I particularly disliked the gloopy syrupy raspberry vinaigrette. Yuk. The bread was a bit sorry for itself; the room was too warm (with the owner constantly resettting the thermostat to 78! Too hot!); and the chicken-fried-steak was sadly greasy and not as it should be.
I will be interested how dinner is. It may be a much more quality exploit. Will report on it if I get the chance.