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Sweet Willie

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  1. Curious how it was cooked at Custom House, as most Chicago being wet aged lends itself well to over flame prep.
  2. I just added a couple clients in/near Novi. Will have to try these. With the large Middle Eastern immigrant community I'm partial to that cuisine, in/near Novi is La Shish as well as Kabobgy which is in the huge gaudy restaurant that looks like Tony Soprano built it. --
  3. Went for lunch the other day. Associate and I split a couple dishes. Starter consisted of shrimp, squid, and octopus all sauteed with onions, garlic and spices. Quite good. The entree were chicken enchiladas with mole. The mole is very dark with a very heavy flavor, good but different than "lighter" moles I've had. I don't know enough about Mexican cuisine to know if the mole was representative of a Oaxacan mole. I'd like to go back and try some other dishes. --
  4. New Seoul went through a remodel recently, I have yet to stop in to see if they still use charcoal. THEY BETTER !!!!!
  5. Went on a Thursday night to Magnum's Steakhouse, seeing as Magnum’s is in an office building that is far off of Algonquin Rd with not much signage visible, I didn’t expect it to be busy on a weekday night and sure enough it was almost empty. Out of the 17 people in this large restaurant 10 were at the bar. Place was so empty that the busboy seated us, I don't think they had a host(ess), at least they were not on when we showed up. Service was quite good however as it should be for a near empty place. Started out with a ½ dozen oysters and a shrimp cocktail. Oysters were fresh and very good. Shrimp were slightly overcooked but still had a lot of flavor. For entrees, we both chose meat entrees although as with most steakhouses, there are seafood entrees as well. We love leftover steak for sandwiches, so we ordered large. Mrs. Sweet Willie had the 24oz bone in ribeye and I had the smoked prime rib. All of Magnum’s steaks are wet aged and we were told USDA Prime, but it did not say USDA on the menu only descriptor used was Prime which is allowed even if the meat is not USDA prime. Ribeye was good and quite flavorful, not that tender which confirms my belief that the meat is not USDA Prime. I had the smoked prime rib, yes that is correct, Magnum’s smokes their prime rib, it is not a heavy smoke, it was one of the best pieces of prime rib I’ve had, quite delicious. The side of sautéed mushrooms we ordered was excellent, perhaps heavy on the black pepper but still excellent. Lots of well known wines, especially reds, Stag’s Leap, Freemark Abbey, Cakebread. I'm not a fan of steakhouses, but I would go back to Magnums for the smoked prime rib. To answer Ronnie's question: Magnum's Prime Steak House, Where in the Chicago steak hierarchy? I would have to say low on the hierarchy.
  6. Blackbird, the restaurant that throws too many items into the pot, complex does not always make better IMO and last night confirmed my personal belief that Blackbird is too complex for their own good. I had not been for quite a few years. Went last night with my parents as my Mom had wanted to go to Blackbird for awhile. Dined on the following. crispy confit of swan creek farm suckling pig with cavollo nero, shaved chiogga beets, horseradish and banylus vinegar, so good we ordered two, but could have done without the cavollo nero, it did not add but subracted. braised octopus with fresh hummus, charred ramps, sesame brittle and chickpeas, VERY tender and flavorful octopus but the rest, ehh. sauteed maryland soft shell crab with smoked onions, roasted beets, horseradish cream and juniper, parents both had this dish and did not share so I'm assuming good. sauteed wild king salmon with local asparagus, candied black olives, saffron caviar and califlower almond puree. overcooked salmon, seemed like something off of a steam table. roasted half grimaud farms muscovy duck breast and confit with fresh hearts of palm, mustard greens, pepperoncini and amaro. excellent slow roasted sunset farm baby lamb with fried moels, favas, herbed ricotta, spring radishes and wild flower honey. excellent but lamb was VERY rare when MR was requested. braised pork belly and knackwurst 'choucroute' with fingerlings, crunchy sauerkraut and celery root puree. Knackwurst seemed store bought, nothing special. Pork belly was delicious. buckwheat 'crepaze' with rhubarb consomme, candied celery and sicilian pistachio ice cream. Excellent crepaze with carmelized sugar coating the individual layers of the crepaze, skip the candied celery. meyer lemon mousse with white chocolate, anise and winter citrus - nothing special, very so-so. I had the cheese course, only standout on its own was the blue persille de malzieu, outstanding. capriole farms 'julianna' - goat's milk, greenville, indiana - with pickled grapes colorouge- cow's milk, fort collins, colorado- with plum mostarda big bang -raw cow's milk, westfield vermont - with candied kumquats hopeful tomme-raw cow's and goat's milk, thomasville, georgia -with smoked almonds persille de malzieu- sheep's milk, france- with caramelized onions Service was good until the dessert course, then forgotten coffee, forgotten liquors, etc etc. Very much solidified my not returning. --
  7. Had some good noodle dishes here. The adobo was ok. One of my favorite places in Rosemont area where I just had a group of friends to is Maria's Mexican on Foster a block west of River Road. Foster is about 1/2 mile south of the Rosemont Convention Cetner. I really like the mole here and chilies rellenos with the nod going to the beef stuffing.
  8. I went to school in Mount Vernon, I hope to take a college bud and his wife to dinner in the coming months to Lincoln Cafe, I'll certainly report back.
  9. Went to Candlelite as it came highly recommended. It was ok and better than most thin crusts in Chicago, so I guess it would have to rank pretty high then. Have also been to Vito & Nick's, again better thin crust than what is around but not outstanding. Pizza DOC always undercooks the center of my pizzas so I've never really been a fan. It has been some years and I'm usually one to give a place another try so I'll have to go. I'm looking forward to trying Spacca Napoli. I'm quite tired of the thin v thick which is better discussion, they both are very different animals. For thick I do not like the stuffed places like Giordano's or Edwardo's, As stated above the original Due's, Uno's are turning out great deep dish. My favorite thin crust still is Zaffiro's in Milwaukee. Well worth the drive. --
  10. Can one find Ted's on other islands besides Oahu? like Big Island, Maui or Kauai?
  11. thanks for posting pics CaliPoutine, that meat looks amazing. thanks to all who posted pics.
  12. Willie, could you elaborate on this? Behemoth posted more eloquently than I could have. I would also state that the pork comment above I believe to be very true. Most US pork is also pumped to keep up the moisture content as it has become so lean. I’ve found chicken, pork and lamb all taste much different in Europe.
  13. Was fortunate to go with a group of 14 last month, we had plans for another night in late Feb so I tried to make reservations. I was told that ALL reservations have been taken from now until closing. There are certainly some better dishes than others at The Berghoff, but if you are not having a good time while there you must be dead, what a blast!! --
  14. While accounting for ambiance while there, after my travels to Germany, I've always said that if German food was prepared in the US in the same loving way as it is in Germany, there would be a lot more people dining at German restaurants. I remember thinking in almost every German restaurant we went to. WHY CAN’T US RESTAURANTS COOK LIKE THIS?!!?? --
  15. to clarify, was it a charcoal grill? (as I've been to electric or gas/propane establishments as well)
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