Restaurant Michael

by Jenn (eating bender) on June 14, 2012

When my friend Lauren first visited Restaurant Michael, she immediately told me that she would be bringing me there for my birthday. Everything from the food to the final presentation was incredible, she said, which obviously made me all the more excited. Busy schedules resulted in us pushing the date back, but this past Tuesday, we made it happen.

I would highly recommend checking this place out at least once if you are ever in the Chicago suburbs. The menu speaks for itself. Restaurant Michael was out-of-this-world good.

The waiter began by bringing us an amuse bouche of mascarpone, gruyere and Parmesan-stuffed cheese puffs. They melted in our mouths and I loved the tiny pan that they were served on.

Since it was technically a celebration, we also ordered glasses of Malbec. Who am I kidding? There doesn’t have to be a reason to order a glass of wine. 😉 This one was smooth and delicious.

Lauren suggested that we order the three-course prix fixe, which comes with an appetizer, entrée and dessert. Twist my arm, really. For my appetizer I ordered the spring pea soup, which was served with a lobster ravioli, truffle scented milk foam and poached quail egg. I have no idea how chefs come up with such combinations but everything melded together into a burst of rich flavor and I couldn’t get enough. Too bad it wasn’t a bottomless bowl…

The waiter also brought out fresh rolls, perfect for dipping.

And once again I found myself swooning over their serving dishes. How cool is this butter holder?

For my entrée, I chose the sautéed filet of wild Alaskan halibut, served with more spring pea in the form of a truffle purée, along with potato tournée, baby fennel and champagne sauce. Once again, this dish satisfied every taste bud. The halibut was flaky and seasoned with just enough salt and pepper. It tasted amazing with the spring pea purée and creamy mashed potatoes that come with every Restaurant Michael main course.

Lauren ordered the roasted Roquefort stuffed filet of beef tenderloin, which was served with grilled asparagus, morel mushrooms and tempura squash blossoms and topped with a nouveau Béarnaise sauce. I didn’t try it but based on looks and Lauren’s opinion, it was a winner.

As if that wasn’t enough amazing food, dessert was a hot fallen chocolate soufflé with butterscotch gelato. Let me say that again. Butterscotch gelato. They brought each component out separately and then scooped the gelato into the soufflé so that it could slowly melt into the hot chocolate.

In other words, pure bliss. The nut topping on the butterscotch gelato gave it a nice crunch.

I can’t say enough good things about the food. It was prepared to perfection and presented in such a beautiful way that I found myself grinning like a kid in a candy shop. The rich chocolate truffles they brought with the check capped off the night. They might have officially placed me in “uncomfortably full” mode but it was oh-so worth it.

After our meal, I attempted to capture the outside of the restaurant. It was beautifully lit, though an unfortunately placed tree may give you the impression that the restaurant is actually called, “Ichael.”

We ran into a friendly man who saw that I was snapping photos and offered to take one of the two of us. I explained that my 50mm lens unfortunately does not have an automatic zoom, but this didn’t seem to faze him in the slightest. Though try one was a bit off the mark…

…try two was perfect. He did such a good job with the manual zoom that it looks like we’re in front of a green screen! Thank you, kind stranger.

And thank you, Lauren, for an amazing, belly-happy evening!

Have you ever had a prix fixe restaurant meal? If so, where and what did you have?


1 Erica June 14, 2012 at 10:36 am

Your dress is so cute! Ok….onto the food! Um the lobster ravioli in the soup? Brilliant! Yum. Fabulous meal overall
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2 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:08 pm

Thanks, Erica! Still drooling… :)

3 Rose June 14, 2012 at 10:41 am

This place looks super swanky and delicious. Jealous! I miss you, Ms. Bender! That dress is lovely, btw. Where did you get it?

4 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:09 pm

I miss you, too, Rose!! We are way overdue for a catch-up phone/email date. And thanks for the compliments on the dress! I got it from Ann Taylor LOFT – one of my favorite stores!

5 Lindsay @ Running the Windy City June 14, 2012 at 10:58 am

Everything looks so good! And I have no idea how chefs think of things (truffle scented milk foam? wha?). Looks like a great night, I’m glad you had fun!
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6 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:10 pm

I don’t know how they do it but I’m not going to question it! Thanks, Lindsay! :)

7 Susan June 14, 2012 at 11:03 am

Yum…sounds delicious! Actually, we just enjoyed a prix fixe dinner w/ some of Adam’s work people at a place called Room 39 – For your reading pleasure, here’s what I ate:
– Mixed greens, cucumbers, roasted beets, ricotta salata, almonds and sherry shallot vinaigrette
– Fresh crispy calamari with pecorino romano, lemon and ancho chili aioli
– Seared sea scallops, forbidden rice, chard, shiitake mushrooms, fried artichokes, spring garlic broth
– Goat cheese beignets, caramel soup, whipped cream
(I was in a seafood sort of mood. :)) And man, I don’t really know how to pronounce “beignets,” but they were amazing!

8 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Wow, amazing dinner! I just looked at the website and it looks like such a fun place. I think I would have been really excited about the seafood, too. And goat cheese beignets? Holy moly – I’ve had them with ricotta but goat cheese sounds even more incredible…especially with caramel soup! Thanks for sharing. :)

9 Kristie June 14, 2012 at 12:29 pm

Madison has 2 restaurant weeks every year, where a bunch of places do prix fixe menus for a set price ($25), so I’ve had quite a few :). But really all I can think about right now is how delicious all of your food looked! If I’m ever in Chicago and have time for a splurge meal I definitely know where to go!

10 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:13 pm

How cool that Madison has two restaurant weeks! I would love to join you for one of them sometime. :) And I hope you plan a visit to Chicago soon!

11 Sam June 14, 2012 at 6:19 pm

I am salivating!

12 Jenn (eating bender) June 14, 2012 at 7:14 pm

Can’t wait to salivate together over some delicious meals in July! 😉

13 BroccoliHut June 14, 2012 at 8:00 pm

What an absolutely elegant meal! It all looks perfect. I don’t think I’ve ever had a prix fixe meal before, but I’m thinking it’s a good idea to try one!
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14 Jenn (eating bender) June 15, 2012 at 7:50 am

You definitely should! Sometimes they are way overpriced but when you can find a good one, it’s so worth it!

15 vista orthodontist June 14, 2012 at 9:03 pm

You had me at mascarpone, gruyere and Parmesan-stuffed cheese puffs. All of the dishes sounded so divine, and now I’m craving for a butterscotch gelato, butterscotch is my fave sweet treat.
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16 Jenn (eating bender) June 15, 2012 at 7:51 am

Haha I KNOW! They had me there, too. I told my friend Lauren that if they had just brought me a basket of cheese puffs I would have been content. :) The gelato was delicious. You should definitely pick some up this weekend!

17 luv what you do June 15, 2012 at 10:37 am

That looks delish! I did a farmers market prix fixe in Memphis with a wine tasting that was unbelievable!
There are a couple of places in the city that my boyfriend and I have been wanting to try that do a pre set menu. The problem…He is all about the beef adn me not so much so it makes me nervous. But i know I’ll love the wine!
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18 Online Expert June 16, 2012 at 7:16 am

It’s seems you have great fun and nice meal there. You must also take care of what you are taking in your daily meal i-e knows how much nutritious and calories etc in your meal.
This practice will keeps you more healthy and beautiful! :)
God Bless You!

19 Megan (Braise The Roof) June 18, 2012 at 4:33 pm

No way! Restaurant Michael is one of my company’s restaurant partners! He has actually personally catered some of our events and the food is always incredible (he had a live station with jambalaya once, it was pretty cool). Glad you had a great meal!
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