Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Eat, Drink, Man, Woman... In Secret

I think one of the biggest pleasures a hardcore Chicagoan can get is finding some way to stick it to New York City. “Our people are nicer, our architecture is far superior,” cries the bruised Chicago ego. “Second City be damned!” Another area Chicago is gaining on New York is fine dining. The past two years have noted an increase in foodies turning their eyes and stomachs to what Chicago and its chefs have to offer (Chefs Charlie Trotter of Charlie Trotter’s, Rick Bayless of Frontera Grill and Topolobamo, and Homaro Cantu of Moto just to name a few). Even Donald Trump, one of New York’s biggest personalities, has opened a restaurant on the sixteenth floor of his International Hotel and Tower in the heart of downtown Chicago.

Logan Square's Bonsoirée (2728 W. Armitage) adds another layer of exclusivity to the fine dining experience with their "Underground Restaurant." The twenty-seat restaurant offers a special, affordable prix-fixe menu for people who sign up (which you can do here). Each week a different portion of their mailing list will receive an email detailing a five-course meal to be served at the invitation-only event. It's first-come, first-served with a $10 non-refundable down payment for all reservations, a $5 corkage fee (the restaurant is BYOB, Chef Shin Thompson explains in an interview with Centerstage Chicago, so diners can pair food with wines of their choice), and two dining times (6pm and 8:30).

While I think an honest tally would be hard to come by, Bonsoirée's affordable take to fine dining may be one more point in Chicago's favor.

No comments: