Jellyfish: Restaurant Week 2013

Jellyfish Bar

Under the sea at Jellyfish. It’s very blue in here, can you tell?

I’m hitting five places this week for Restaurant Week, which is pretty ambitious for me these days. Trying to visit mostly new places, though a few old favorites slipped into the line-up. Don’t know about you, but I use Restaurant Week to gage whether or not I’d return to a spot for a regular meal. The menus always feel a little too…on best behavior and I question whether or not it’s representative. In the case of Jellyfish, I wonder if they were trying to appeal to non-seafood lovers.

Jellyfish Drink

The symbol for prosperity floating atop my drink

I say that because their RW menu seemed a “safer” than their regular menu, ie, no raw food to scare the newbies. Me? I’m all about the danger. You can tell because I drink my cocktails with barista-style symbols stenciled on top.

We started with The Firecracker Roll — a tempura coated Spicy Tuna with dabs of avocado and cream cheese. It was smooth and a little greasy and probably didn’t offend anyone who hates the idea of raw fish. I love raw fish, so I was disappointed.

Jellyfish Lobster Mango Roll

Lobster and mango, together at last

The Lobster Mango Roll was more up my alley. The fruit overpowered things a bit, but it had a cleaner mouth-feel. I should have ordered a Yellowtail Nigiri to see how they execute sushi. But next time, right?

The entrees were well prepared, though very heavy. My friend had the Braised Pork Belly and I had the Silky Salmon. Pork belly, sure, you’d expect that to be meaty and fill you quickly. The runny egg was a nice touch, and I especially liked the pickled vegetables. I didn’t expect the Silky Salmon to be quite so heavy, but the corn congee glued it down and I could only finish half. I wanted to save room for dessert…

Jellyfish Leche Flan

Flan, swimming in a sea of syrup

The sweets started with the Leche Flan. I’m not a huge fan of leche, but the peculiar fruitiness was no match for the syrup that coated it. The flan had a nice texture, and I particularly enjoyed the blackberries and blueberries atop the super sweet caramel. For all the world, it reminded me of pancakes. The Strawberry, Mango and Green Tea Mochi were as expected.

Jellyfish is sandwiched between a clothing store and the street, and the entire restaurant is bathed in a cool, blue light. I may pop in again, but if I do, I’ll expect more bounty of the sea than I experienced on this visit.

Jellyfish Restaurant
1009 N Rush St (2nd Floor: Look for the blue light!)
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 660-3111