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Oct 6, 2009 01:53 PM

Alinea and Moto

I will be in Chicago early February for a food conference.
One course I teach deals with food trends and fusion.

Last week I did WD~50 and Clio..

While in Chicago I am thinking Alinea and Moto.

Are there recommended restaurants other than these that I should be looking out for?

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  1. I would also recommend schwa.

    2 Replies
    1. re: pleddy

      Thanks Pleddy.
      I guess I should specify. I will only be doing 2 of these restaurants so I guess I'm looking for suggestions from people who have tried both and would recommend a different restaurant over either Moto or Alinea.

      Would that be the case with Schwa?

      It's hard to tell these days by looking at a menu because none of the tasting menus have any real descriptions anymore.

      1. re:

        If you're interested in molecular gastronomy, you'll want to go to Moto over all others in Chicago. If you're interested in food, you'll want to go to Alinea over all others in Chicago. So I'd say those two are your best bets.

    2. Just had dinner at Alinea three weeks ago and it's still the best food experience even after 5 years. There is a mixture of molecular and just straight up great food. The experience, if you've not already had it, is the best dining experience you might ever have.

      What trends are you looking to sample? The farm-to-table trend, probably North Pond. If you're talking the gastro-pub trend (I hate that term), maybe you're looking for Publican which has phenomenal beer dinners; finally for the fine dining in a cool relaxed atmosphere trend I would say Graham Elliot.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jbontario

        For this particular trip I'm more interested in the molecular stuff.
        I think a lot of it is going to start fading away so I want to get it while it's still near the peak.

        Looks like I'll be going to both Moto and Alinea.

      2. A recent meal at Moto was, dollar for dollar, the most disappointing meal I have ever had. Perhaps it was because, the night before, I had an absolutely sublime meal at Schwa, perhaps it was because it cost us as much as a recent dinner at Alinea, perhaps it was because the service was ho-hum, the drinks average, and decor stale. I don't know. All I know is that, at the end of the evening I wanted my money back. After about three weeks, I can only remember four of the 20 courses that I had and three of those I remember because they were just offensively bad (one literally looked and tasted like dirt and was called, I believe, "urban garden").

        In Chicago, I would rather eat at the following places than Moto:
        Hot Chocolate
        Hot Doug's
        This list goes on and on . . .

        I will never go back to Moto, even on someone else's dime. There are too many great places to eat in Chicago to waste one of two nights there.

        If you are dead set on chemistry, I feel like you will get enough of it at Alinea and L2O to hold you over. If not, I guess you could go to Moto. But don't say I didn't warn you.