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Nice dinner - atmosphere is key

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Looking for suggestions on venue to take my wife on a night out without the kid.

She is looking to model her new dress and risk a stumble on some serious high heels.

We are both looking for lively atmosphere without having to scream at each other all night long.

I am looking for good food, excellent service and to keep the whole shebang under $200 – assume appetizer, entrée and wine.

Location: prefer to stay North of Armitage / South of Foster and East of Western

Current backup reservation is at Sola which we both like.
Previous similar (albeit wrong location) night at Sable.
We like places like BrownTrout and Chalkboard – but are looking for more lively, fun, get dressed, atmosphere and these tend to be a little more homey.
Last note: no sushi please and we've been to Deleece to many times so thank you but...
Any thoughts appreciated

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  1. Your taste sounds a lot like ours.

    Here are some suggestions:
    Sprout on Fullerton
    Owen & Engine on Western Ave.
    Telegraph or Long & Eagle in Logan Square (a little West of Western but well worth it)

    6 Replies
    1. re: chicgail

      Thanks - it does feel we have similar tastes as we went to Sprout on a similar evening some time back and had a good time.

      Had been thinking about Longman and Eagle but wasn't sure if the "dress and heels" would be too much - never been there - thoughts?

      1. re: obiwandog

        The first time we were at L&E, I was the only one in the place who didn't have "ink." Jeans much more appropriate. Most places outside of the big-ticket restaurants seem to be pretty casual. Still, I get it about the great dress and heels.

        For that your best bet might be Telegraph. I was there in nice jeans and a pretty top last week and I was comfortable, but I saw a lot of different looks. Sola as your back up isn't a bad idea either.

        1. re: chicgail

          Ceres Table. Bonsoiree (a few blocks west of Western but a nice space and BYOB). Yoshi's. Bistro Campagne.

          1. re: GourmetWednesday

            Yes! Second Bonsoiree and Bistro Campagne. Campagne is quieter, more traditional, but great food and a lovely outdoor area if weather is nice. Bonsoiree is small, BYO, tasting menu.

            1. re: chicgail

              Also, if you go to Bistro Campagne you can hit Tiny Lounge for some after dinner cocktails. It also runs the gamut of casual to fancy dress. It is a bit of a hike in heels (you have to walk past Welles Park) but not horrible. Outdoor seating is more casual but the inside is dark and slinky with booths.

              1. re: lbs

                A few more thoughts: North Pond--you can't beat the atmosphere and view! Balena is new and getting great buzz. Erwin is tried and true, maybe along the lines of Browntrout and Sola. Not terribly exciting these days but solid.