Lula's is one of those restaurants at which it is very easy to order badly. However, I will stick to my previous strategy and advice to the board to only order specials. Ordering a steak there though is not to my mind a prudent choice. In Chicago how many places can stand up to the city's steak standards set by the Gibsons, Mortons, S&Ws and others of the city?
As I was person who ordered the steak that you're referring to as an imprudent choice, I, of course, did not expect it to be great, certainly not on the level of a X Chicago Steakhouse where you're paying a gazillion dollars. Come on. I don't think anyone would expect that.
Le Bouchon, Mon Ami Gabi, Brasserie Jo maybe can take a lesser cut of beef and make a wonderful little steak, but even at the Brazilian steakhouses, the Tango Surs, or El Nandus, how often does the steak (not the other stuff) exceed your expectations?
Exactly. And I, perhaps foolishly, put Lula in the category of those places. Having had faith at that time in the kitchen, I expected to receive a beef that was akin to Le Bouchon, Mon Ami Gabi, etc., where even lesser cuts of beef or lower quality cuts are still prepared quite well. I mean, did everyone's parents regularly serve Gibson's level of beef on their table at home? Not likely. But was it still good? Yes. So I still see some value to ordering beef even when I know it's not going to be sublime. Sometimes that's what you want. And as long as you don't have one level of expectation when it comes to beef, you can do just fine.
Nevertheless, my problem, however, seemed to be their sourcing -- the beef itself was not even passable.
Other specials I found to be hit or miss, as are their brunch specials, in my experience. I don't go to Lula expecting something new. Maybe that's why I don't order the specials. I go for what I know they can do well, like roasted chicken or the pasta yia-yia. If I stick to that, then I'm satisfied.