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Vettel Loves Creative Ēma; Little Beet Table Lacks Flavor

A tale of two restaurants

Ēma
Marc Much

Ēma fends off the autumn blues with bright Mediterranean flavors, writes Phil Vettel. Chef CJ Jacobson delivers a "delicious" pumpkin hummus that’s far from a seasonal gimmick, as well as one of Vettel’s favorites—an odd dish of English peas mixed with housemade yogurt and blackberry-sumac granite. Halloumi, or fried cheese, is tossed with dates, various peppers and chicory for a "textural playground," while larger plates include rotisserie chicken offering "clean and familiar flavors." For dessert, honey pie is a "sweet treat" and the "very good" almond cake is reminiscent of Basque cake. Three stars. [Tribune]

Graham Meyer thinks Little Beet Table not only forgoes the gluten, but the flavor too. The food "doesn’t let you forget about the limitation on the kitchen" and stumbles in several ways. A roasted shrimp salad suffers from an "appalling proportion of rotten greens" while a "fishier-than-expected" hamachi crudo, with orange, jalapeno, celery and chive oil, "doesn’t let its accompaniments be heard." Other dishes, such as the grass-fed double burger and sweet pea guacamole, are competent but lack salt. In fact, it’s so dire that Meyer says the salt level has the "low elevation of the Dead Sea, and there’s no shaker on the table." As it stands, the New York spinoff leaves a lot to be desired. [Crain’s]

Little Beet Table

845 N State St, Chicago, IL 60610

Ema

74 West Illinois Street, , IL 60654 (312) 527-5586 Visit Website

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