Pat Bruno thinks Martin Noguier has finally found his place with intimate and charming Bistronomic. He describes the cuisine as “wonderfully sane and devastatingly delicious.” Bruno really enjoys his entire selection of food highlighting the country pate, “as good as it gets,” and the bistro-style ravioli as “flavorful and sophisticated--far from the ordinary.” His real “stunner” of the evening is the braised lamb shoulder, a dish that is “elegantly delicious from start to finish.” [Sun Times]
On the flip side, David Tamarkin had only negative remarks for the new location of Zapatista in Lincoln Park. Tamarkin is confused by the food, as “it sure as hell doesn’t seem like Mexican food” and that “Mexico and anybody who loves the food there, should take offense.” His burrito comes with French Fries (“not even a crime Chipotle would commit”) and the ceviche is mushy and seems to be made without lime. To top it off, the chocolate tamale tastes like “chocolate cake mixed with sand.” As for the service, not any better. “Adding insult to injury,” he says, so slow that you are forced to sit and wait to leave. [TOC]
Phil Vettel’s views on Old Town Social change depending on the time of day. He claims the place has “more identities than Jason Bourne.” He describes the space as “one of one of the most inviting, laid-back neighborhood joints in the city” until it gradually turns into a singles bar later in the evening, and shifts into “insane-nightclub mode” on the weekends. Service, like the atmosphere varies with time of day.
The food seems to be the only constant variable and where Old Town Social shines. He praises chef Jared Van Camp, saying his small plates are “remarkable, carefully crafted.” A highlight for him is the pork belly Reuben where “the fatty pork is pastrami-seasoned and married to Swiss cheese and house-fermented kraut.” [Tribune]