Sixteen or L20 for Christmas Eve?
I am trying to decide between Sixteen and L20 for a quiet Christmas Eve Night Dinner with my spouse. I know Laurent Gras has left L20, so I am having difficulty choosing between the two. Cost is comparable. Each has a holiday tasting menu. I haven't been inside L20 since it changed over from Ambria (our old favorite restaurant), but I assume both have great venues. I just can't decide. Help!
2300 N Lincoln Park W, Chicago, IL 60614
From my previous comments on Sixteen.....more than a year ago... "We ate at 16 two weeks ago for our wedding anniversary. Made the reservation through opentable so I never talked to anyone except once to confirm. I noted in my OT res. that it was our anniv. We arrived 1/2 hour late. Walked into the hotel and said we were here for dinner at 16 and a gentleman escorted us to the elevators. Arriving at 16 we were greeted by name(pronounced correctly and thats's not an easy thing) and wished a happy anniversary(the first of about ten times). We wanted to do a tasting menu to fully experience the chefs capabilities but several items didn't really appeal to us so we asked our server if we could make up our own. She practically fell all over herself assuring us that it would be no problem. Next we asked the sommelier if he could pair our dishes with wines(my preferred choice but I didn't say that) or if he could recommend both a white and red 1/2 bottle). He checked out what we ordered and paired a wine with each course. Everything was delicious. We got a window seat that I had also requested. A wonderful evening. Now, that being said, I thought each dish could have been a little larger and a little cheaper.(I expected to drop $500-600 for tax, tip and title and that's what I did) We were just this side of full but not so much that we had to go grab a burger. Service was impeccable and it is a beautiful room. "
Both are indeed beautiful venues. However, I think the food is just okay at both. I mean, the food is good, but very little really wowed me at either restaurant (and I went to L2O when Gras was still chef), and in that price bracket, they should do better. If I were choosing, I see that there are still some limited times available for Friday night at NoMI and TRU, and I would choose either of those over L2O or Sixteen. But if it has to be one of those two, L2O or Sixteen, I'd call it a toss-up.
Incidentally, L2O and TRU are both Lettuce Entertain You restaurants. This time of year, they have a deal in which they give you a lightly-restricted $25 bonus gift card for every $100 of gift cards you buy. You can't use the gift cards the same day you buy them. So if you're going to L2O or TRU and can stop by any LEY restaurant by Thursday, you can buy enough gift cards to use them for your dinner, and still have the bonus gift cards to use later this winter. You can view a list of all LEY restaurants on their website at www.leye.com