You can watch meal preparation in the open kitchen.
I had the chance to try Lincoln Square’s newest fine dining concept, Prix Fixe. It was their second night of service, so the timing between courses wasn’t quite right and a request for hot tea was an unexpected adventure. But what they lacked in polish, they made up for in attentive and delighted service for each customer that walked in the door. And the food? It was the best deal for the money that I’ve come across in a while.
I started with a delicate gnocchi.
As you might guess from the name, Prix Fixe serves a fixed menu — three courses with three selections for $35. If you’re not that hungry, you can split a three course meal with a dining companion for $50. They’re still in the process of obtaining a liquor license, but if you forget to bring something, there are a couple of liquor stores within walking distance. I hope they decide to keep the BYOB option.
Appetizers for our table included the potato soup and gnocchi. I thought the soup was a tad salty, but touches of roasted garlic and savory crouton made it rock. The gnocchi was a nice combination of firm, flavorful pasta and tender mushrooms served over a squash puree. Definitely worth ordering again.
A lightly seared white fish served over relish with dill sauce.
We tried juicy, roasted chicken served over an incredibly light polenta and drizzled with honey sauce. My dining companion said it was the best chicken she’d had in Chicago in a long time. I felt the same way about the white fish. Too often this fish is either bland or overcooked, but my dish was lightly crispy on the outside, moist in the center, and perfectly seasoned. The relish and dill sauce were flavorful, tangy accompaniments.
Breakfast turned dessert.
We opted out of the cheese plate for dessert because it was heavy on the bleu cheese. Instead we tried the molten lava cake with sweet cherries, topped with mint. We thought it was actually too sweet and needed something more tart for contrast. The French Toast with vanilla ice cream was more successful. The ginger sauce elevated it from a sweet breakfast item to an interesting dessert.
I want to try a few of these dishes again, but the owners plan to shift the menu around each week to keep the focus on local and seasonally available produce. We were able to walk up and get a table on a Saturday night, but don’t expect that trend to continue. Once people discover this Lincoln Square spot, you won’t be able to get into the tiny 34-seat restaurant without a reservation.
How do you feel about this restaurant concept? Plan to travel to Lincoln Square to try it? Let me know in the comments.
4835 N. Western Ave
Chicago, IL 60625
On Twitter: @dineprixfixe