Taking Boss out to dinner
I'm taking my boss out to dinner this evening and I'm struggling to come up with a location. He loves Bistro 110, RL, Japonais, Bongo Room, Pops for Champagne and Sunda. This gives you an idea of his profile. We've been to Nomi, Sable, Spiaggia, Graham Elliot, Avec, Hub 51, Girl & Goat and Epic. I'm trying to find a good, reliable place to take him.
He's not into Chinese or Vietnamese food and probably no French recommendations as he's heading to France in a few days. Steak isn't big on his list either.
I've recently read about Sprout. Looks interesting but the decor looks very sterile. Tru and Alinea would be out of our price range.
Any recommendations on a few new places to try?
1723 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60614
110 East Pearson Street, Chicago, IL 60611
1152 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL 60605
600 West Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60610
980 North Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60611
217 W. Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60654
Pops for Champagne
601 N State St, Chicago, IL 60654
You don't mention any Italian places. The menus at some of our new Italian restaurants have some contemporary dishes that would be equally at home in contemporary American restaurants, along with the more typical pastas etc. I ate recently at Piccolo Sogno and loved it; Cibo Matto, the Florentine, and Vivere are also very good.
If you want to stick to contemporary American, it sounds like you haven't been to Naha or MK, in the downtown area. All of the places you've mentioned are downtown, but three of our best contemporary American restaurants are in Lincoln Park, and are all worth considering: Perennial Virant, Boka, and North Pond.
Mercat a la Planxa, mentioned above, might also be a good choice. Note that the tapas format lends itself to sharing, which might be fine but might be awkward (some people are touchy about that). Also, I don't know whether tapas would be too "out there"; his tastes sound pretty mainstream.
I'd also consider Mexique. The provincial Mexican food is terrific, and very different from any of the places you've mentioned above. Take a look at the menu on their website. It's in West Town, a couple miles west of the Mag Mile.
All of these are reliable for great food and a nice atmosphere. And they all take reservations on Opentable, so with a few clicks, you can see which of these is available tonight and make your reservation.
1729 North Halsted, Chicago, IL 60614
2610 North Cannon Drive, Chicago, IL 60614
Mercat a la Planxa
638 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
1800 N Lincoln, Chicago, IL 60614
1529 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622
464 N Halsted, Chicago, IL 60622
71 W Monroe Street, Chicago, IL 60603
500 North Clark St., Chicago, IL 60610
201 N State St, Chicago, IL 60601
151 W. Adams, Chicago, IL 60601
868 N. Franklin, Chicago, IL 60610