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Entente (and some Elske)

Entente (and some Elske)
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  • Entente (and some Elske)

    Post #1 - January 12th, 2017, 11:42 am
    Post #1 - January 12th, 2017, 11:42 am Post #1 - January 12th, 2017, 11:42 am
    Anyone been to Elske or Entente (or both)? I will be heading to each place in the next couple of weeks and did a search to prepare and there do not seem to be any posts related to either. In any event, I'll plan to report back.

    https://elskerestaurant.com/menu/
    1350 W. Randolph
    (312) 733-1314

    https://www.ententechicago.com/
    3056 N. Lincoln
    (872) 206-8553 (yo! new area code)
  • Post #2 - January 12th, 2017, 11:59 am
    Post #2 - January 12th, 2017, 11:59 am Post #2 - January 12th, 2017, 11:59 am
    I went to Entente and thought it warranted a return visit. I mentioned their outstanding biscuit on this thread but I enjoyed a lot of what I had there. Between myself and my companions, we ordered the entire menu. Dishes were creative and tasty, and for the most part, expertly prepared. I thought that the flavor combinations were very well thought out. That said, the 2 dishes that had the most potential for outright deliciousness (Fettuccini, Carolina Gold) were utterly destroyed by too much salt - like so much salt, it burned. Cocktails were clever. Wine and spirit offerings were interesting, and service was friendly and informative.

    It was also notable that even though very few reservations appeared be available online for when we wanted to go, the place was virtually empty when we were there. So, phoning for a reservation may be a more efficient way to proceed. They'll require a credit card but it's not a ticketed, pay-in-advance situation like some other places.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #3 - January 12th, 2017, 12:40 pm
    Post #3 - January 12th, 2017, 12:40 pm Post #3 - January 12th, 2017, 12:40 pm
    I've been to Entente twice already; heading back again at the end of the month, so obviously I am a big fan. First visit went with another couple and we shared the entire menu. Felt dishes ranged from good to outstanding. For the price, the creativity and quality is an amazing deal. Definitely save room for dessert, because they are stellar. Loved the vibe and extremely friendly service as well.

    Elske I went to opening weekend; was mostly positive, but a couple to-be-expected opening gaffes (both in service and food). However love the concept they are striving for and super talented people behind Elske. Am returning next month and am expecting it should be a wonderful experience. Am hoping it will be a warm enough evening to take advantage of an after dinner libation by the fire in their beautiful outdoor area.
    Twitter: @Goof_2
  • Post #4 - January 17th, 2017, 11:01 am
    Post #4 - January 17th, 2017, 11:01 am Post #4 - January 17th, 2017, 11:01 am
    Thanks for the feedback Suburban Ronnie and Gonzo. As I review the menus they look similar in concept (and price point), including bread service charges :D, so visiting within a couple of days of the other should be a good compare/contrast exercise. I love the order the whole menu gambit - looks possible at both places given our hungry 4 top groups. Will report back.

    Also, I can't remember the name of the predecessor (perhaps with an intervening place) izakaya in the Entente space, which I liked very much, but the back room there always felt a little deserted and cold because the front bar had more action - though it strikes me the opposite might be true at a place like Entente. Interested to see what they've done to marry the two. Also, fireplace at Elske sounds great.
  • Post #5 - January 17th, 2017, 11:15 am
    Post #5 - January 17th, 2017, 11:15 am Post #5 - January 17th, 2017, 11:15 am
    Ahmad Shareef wrote:Also, I can't remember the name of the predecessor (perhaps with an intervening place) izakaya in the Entente space, which I liked very much, but the back room there always felt a little deserted and cold because the front bar had more action - though it strikes me the opposite might be true at a place like Entente.

    That would be Chizakaya.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #6 - January 22nd, 2017, 3:19 pm
    Post #6 - January 22nd, 2017, 3:19 pm Post #6 - January 22nd, 2017, 3:19 pm
    Wondering if the moderators might want to split this into threads for each restaurant. In the meantime, will say I was at Entente Friday, friendly service with excellent pacing, all four of us liked all nine dishes we had, would need to order the Carolina Gold on every visit.
  • Post #7 - January 22nd, 2017, 4:09 pm
    Post #7 - January 22nd, 2017, 4:09 pm Post #7 - January 22nd, 2017, 4:09 pm
    Smassey wrote:Wondering if the moderators might want to split this into threads for each restaurant. In the meantime, will say I was at Entente Friday, friendly service with excellent pacing, all four of us liked all nine dishes we had, would need to order the Carolina Gold on every visit.

    Mod Note:

    It's tough to truly split this thread into 2 because some of the posts contain content about both places. But we did our best to part them on a going forward basis and this one is for Entente.

    Thanks,

    =R=
    for the Moderators
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #8 - January 22nd, 2017, 5:10 pm
    Post #8 - January 22nd, 2017, 5:10 pm Post #8 - January 22nd, 2017, 5:10 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:
    Smassey wrote:Wondering if the moderators might want to split this into threads for each restaurant. In the meantime, will say I was at Entente Friday, friendly service with excellent pacing, all four of us liked all nine dishes we had, would need to order the Carolina Gold on every visit.

    Mod Note:

    It's tough to truly split this thread into 2 because some of the posts contain content about both places. But we did our best to part them on a going forward basis and this one is for Entente.

    Thanks,

    =R=
    for the Moderators

    Great solution, thank you for your prompt response. Seemed like it would only get more complicated on a going forward basis.
  • Post #9 - May 28th, 2017, 12:17 pm
    Post #9 - May 28th, 2017, 12:17 pm Post #9 - May 28th, 2017, 12:17 pm
    I had an amazing meal at Entente earlier this week. Everything we ordered was delicious, beautiful and interesting. We started with the biscuit and ramp butter, totally outstanding, even better than the biscuit I had at Giant a few weeks back and the butter was amazing. We also did the pumpernickle pretzel, little gem salad, wedge salad, liver, skate, lamb and duck. Everything is designed to be shared, which was really fun for the four of us. The salads were excellent, the liver was wonderful, it had some kind of "Old Fashioned" glaze over the top of it. The duck may have been one of the best preparations I've ever eaten, it was really outstanding, the lamb was also great, as was the Skate (though not served in wing form as one might expect). We had the cheesecake and the tres leches for dessert, although the cheesecake was beautifully plated, the tres leches was the star. I immediately made a follow up reservation for the next month, I can't wait to go back.
  • Post #10 - May 28th, 2017, 2:49 pm
    Post #10 - May 28th, 2017, 2:49 pm Post #10 - May 28th, 2017, 2:49 pm
    Agree 100% on the duck dish - it is outstanding and the 'dirty rice' it comes with is spectacular.

    Entente seems to be keeping many of the same protein items in place since it opened, but making tweaks to the surrounding preparations as the seasons change. Look close at the menu if you've already been because things may not actually be the same dish you had previously. For example, the duck was done in an asian-styled prep during the winter but had none of those elements now. For my money the profiterole is the dessert to order, but the tres leches is a stunner as well. Desserts here are some of the best in the city right now.

    Having been to Entente 3x now, I hope it doesn't fall off people's radar because they are cooking at a very high level.
  • Post #11 - May 29th, 2017, 12:34 pm
    Post #11 - May 29th, 2017, 12:34 pm Post #11 - May 29th, 2017, 12:34 pm
    A friend and I ate at Entente a few weeks ago and were totally underwhelmed. The dishes were interesting/creative and attractive in appearance, but were only so-so in taste, with nothing at all memorable or wow-inducing. Maybe we hit it on an off night, but many of the dishes were the same as those described above by others, but all were just... meh.

    As it happens, we ate the following evening at another restaurant (Ruxbin) and several of the dishes on the two menus were quite similar, including octopus and a little gem salad. But the difference between the two was night and day; unlike Entente, we loved everything at Ruxbin for being amazingly delicious, and would return in a heartbeat.

    I point this out only because the juxtaposition was so jarring. A restaurant should not be judged by comparison with another restaurant, but rather, on its own merits. And on its merits, we were disappointed by Entente and have no plans to return.
  • Post #12 - June 17th, 2017, 10:37 pm
    Post #12 - June 17th, 2017, 10:37 pm Post #12 - June 17th, 2017, 10:37 pm
    Let me start by saying this about Elske: it just didn't do it for my. However, I had the tasting menu and perhaps that was the source of the problem. The one dish we ordered and shared that wasn't on the tasting menu might have been my favorite of the night.

    But moving on, Entente is the restaurant I will no doubt visit again . . . and probably again and again. Gorgeous plating, warm service and fantastic food. And I'm gathering from what others have eaten, the menu is constantly changing. But here's a look at this past Thursday's menu:

    Image



    Yes, the biscuit is gloriously buttery and flaky. And the elotes butter was every bit as delicious.

    Image



    I was really blown away by the green garbanzo hummus. Add in some fantastic olive oil, apricot, bitter greens and a fruit and nut flat bread and you've got a contender for dish of the year. Vegetarians will be thrilled.

    Image



    I was practically licking the green goddess dressing off the plate holding the wedge salad. The Benton's bacon, cambozola, tomatoes (including roasted tomato powder) might not have even been necessary, but they turned this great wedge salad into a showstopper. And what a gorgeous presentation.

    Image



    The little gem salad didn't sound like something I'd love, but the combination of green strawberries, freeze dried strawberries, crispy jalapenos, almonds, pickled ramps, goat cheese, honey and a lemon-poppy seed dressing was outstanding. I still think I preferred the wedge, but both were great.

    Image



    And that liver! Bourbon, orange and angostura gelee, plus grilled sourdough. This might not have been as gorgeous as the liver tart at Elske, but I much preferred the flavor combination.

    Image



    When it comes to lobster, I tend to prefer butter and lemon, a bib and a corner of the room where I can go at it by myself. I find that lobster's flavor often gets lost in more elaborate presentations. But Entente's lobster with cucumber, green curry and fermented coconut was outstanding. The lobster was cooked perfectly (sous vide?) and managed to shine through and was complemented by the other flavors. And yes, another gorgeous presentation.

    Image



    We ate on the early side, when natural light made picture taking easy. The rest of my pictures were not as good. But I'll note a few other highlights: for entrees, the short rib and the duck. The short rib also appeared to have been cooked sous vide, then crisped, and was absolutely perfect. We were also comped a couple of desserts. Both were excellent but the tiramisu really stood out. Interestingly, it featured an asparagus ice cream that while I didn't love on its own, really worked beautifully in the dish.

    The only dish I couldn't recommend was the skate, due to the skate texture itself. The other components of the dish, including the white asparagus, were great.

    I'm sure I'll be back at Entente soon. This was one of the best meals I've had in Chicago. Gorgeous plating and flavors that lived up to the expectations created by the plating.
  • Post #13 - June 18th, 2017, 6:08 pm
    Post #13 - June 18th, 2017, 6:08 pm Post #13 - June 18th, 2017, 6:08 pm
    BR wrote:Let me start by saying this about Elske: it just didn't do it for my. ..
    ...But moving on, Entente is the restaurant I will no doubt visit again...

    ...I'm sure I'll be back at Entente soon. This was one of the best meals I've had in Chicago. Gorgeous plating and flavors that lived up to the expectations created by the plating.


    Having been one of the LTHers to share this meal with BR, I couldn't agree more with everything he said. This meal was chock-full of surprises and I can't wait for the menu to change so we can do it all over again.

    To fill in some photo gaps:

    BUTTERMILK BISCUIT Seasonal butter (elotes)
    Image

    GREEN GARBANZO HUMMUS Fruit & nut flatbread, apricot, bitter greens
    Image

    LIVER Bourbon, orange, angostura, sourdough
    Image

    WEDGE Benton’s bacon, cambozola, tomato, green
    goddess
    Image

    LITTLE GEM Goat cheese, green strawberry, jalapeno, almond,
    pickled ramps, lemon-poppy seed dressing
    Image

    LOBSTER Cucumber, green curry, fermented coconut
    ImageImage

    SKATE White asparagus, fennel, grapefruit, licorice
    Image

    SLAGEL FARMS SHORTRIB Oyster stout, broccoli rabe, cashew
    Image

    DUCK Grilled maitake, duck hearts, dirty rice,
    watercress, spring onion, carbonated grape
    Image

    SPAGHETTINI Rabbit merguez, fermented carrot harissa,
    peas, mint, feta
    Image

    ELYSIAN FIELDS LAMB Fava, last year's blueberries, pecorino, spruce
    Image

    TIRAMISU Dulcey, Vietnamese coffee, green asparagus
    Image

    PROFITEROLE Sour cherry, sassafrass, shiso
    Image
  • Post #14 - June 19th, 2017, 1:59 pm
    Post #14 - June 19th, 2017, 1:59 pm Post #14 - June 19th, 2017, 1:59 pm
    I was back at Entente this past weekend, after having an amazing experience on my last visit. I have to say, everything was as delicious as the last time except we tried the Spaghettini and I found it to be too salty. The duck was absolute perfection and the liver was ridiculously good. We also tried the Tiramisu this time and it was excellent, really different, but I enjoyed it tremendously. I look forward to getting back to Entente again.
  • Post #15 - January 22nd, 2019, 10:26 am
    Post #15 - January 22nd, 2019, 10:26 am Post #15 - January 22nd, 2019, 10:26 am
    Entente, which earned a Michelin star at its Lakeview location, is bringing its act to River North — and adding a key player. Entente will close its old location (3056 N. Lincoln Ave.) on March 2, and will reopen by March 25 in its new location (700 N. Sedgwick St.).

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/dining/c ... story.html
    Hors D'oeuvre: A ham sandwich cut into forty pieces.
    - Jack Benny
  • Post #16 - January 22nd, 2019, 1:49 pm
    Post #16 - January 22nd, 2019, 1:49 pm Post #16 - January 22nd, 2019, 1:49 pm
    That's awesome! It'll suck to lose a fantastic restaurant up north, but that stretch on Lincoln has to be so difficult from a profitability standpoint.

    Another great restaurant that bailed on this bullding.
  • Post #17 - January 22nd, 2019, 4:30 pm
    Post #17 - January 22nd, 2019, 4:30 pm Post #17 - January 22nd, 2019, 4:30 pm
    Exciting to see Ian Davis join. Hope entente can maintain the atmosphere. Despite Fisher's personality (loud! Exciting!), nevermind the delicious food, that restaurant can be so intimate and special.
  • Post #18 - February 15th, 2019, 2:59 pm
    Post #18 - February 15th, 2019, 2:59 pm Post #18 - February 15th, 2019, 2:59 pm
    Well, that sure didn't take long . . .

    chicagotribune.com wrote:When we first reported that Entente (3056 N. Lincoln Ave.) would close March 1 to move to a larger space in River North (700 N. Sedgwick St.), part of the news was that Ian Davis, former chef at one-Michelin-star Band of Bohemia, would join Brian Fisher in a unique, two-executive-chef arrangement.

    That’s not going to happen. Davis has withdrawn from the project, citing personal reasons.

    Citing 'personal reasons,' chef Ian Davis departs Entente project

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #19 - February 16th, 2019, 1:40 pm
    Post #19 - February 16th, 2019, 1:40 pm Post #19 - February 16th, 2019, 1:40 pm
    Still more on recent developments . . .

    chicagotribune.com wrote:On Monday, celebrated Chicago chef Ian Davis went to court to fend off accusations of improper behavior toward women. Seeking protective orders against two women, Davis described being labeled a “sexual predator” by one former co-worker who had complained to Band of Bohemia, the Michelin-rated brewpub where he worked through December.

    The filings also mention an Instagram account, since taken down, that was “dragging my name threw (sic) the mud” and Davis’ concern that the situation “has put me in a rough spot to open up a new restaurant.”

    By Friday, Davis was out of work. His lawyer revealed that Davis, in fact, would not be joining Entente, another top restaurant, as planned because of the developing controversy.

    “He was allowed to resign, not because they believed this but because it was such a distraction,” said Davis’ attorney, Jeffrey Granich. “We are confident the truth will come out and his incredible ability will be recognized and applauded and enjoyed again.”

    Former Band of Bohemia chef 'allowed to resign' from new job amid controversy over treatment of women

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #20 - February 16th, 2019, 3:20 pm
    Post #20 - February 16th, 2019, 3:20 pm Post #20 - February 16th, 2019, 3:20 pm
    I believe these accusations. I experienced or witnessed sexual abuse at almost every restaurant I worked at, and the culture was very misogynistic in subtle and often overt ways.

    I actually find it hard to believe anything was done about it in this case, or that it made the news. Restaurants are still so far behind other industries in regards to responsiveness to and oversight of sexual abuse in the workplace. Workers don't typically have a lot of leverage with employers, or financial means to pursue justice in the court system.

    It's great to see this though. Now that the media actually cares, it means victims may actually be listened to.
    Logan: Come on, everybody, wang chung tonight! What? Everybody, wang chung tonight! Wang chung, or I'll kick your ass!

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