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mikeczyz

TRU - Chicago

110 posts in this topic

TDOW forgot to mention the staff waving us a cab and handing us the individual bags of the ruhm baba cakes, we ate them the next day!

And they also let dayne pick some chocolates which were boxed and made it all the way to Seattle. we ate them while typing this!

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Sounds like an extraordinary meal for sure. Was it just the two of you at the kitchen table? While I love the excess a meal like that affords, my overall experience suffers when it is too much and it literally becomes work to lift the fork. I suppose it is better than not enough. Someday I will figure out how to pace myself.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

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Sounds like an extraordinary meal for sure. Was it just the two of you at the kitchen table? While I love the excess a meal like that affords, my overall experience suffers when it is too much and it literally becomes work to lift the fork. I suppose it is better than not enough. Someday I will figure out how to pace myself.

I have consciously started doing the unthinkable - leaving food on my plate. I even did that at the kitchen table at Trio - not because the food wasn't good - because it was - but because I can have a little taste of everything on the plate and then save some room for the six or eight courses still to come.


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Sounds like an extraordinary meal for sure. Was it just the two of you at the kitchen table? While I love the excess a meal like that affords, my overall experience suffers when it is too much and it literally becomes work to lift the fork. I suppose it is better than not enough. Someday I will figure out how to pace myself.

It was just the two of us, very decadent for sure! The room will hold up to six and I have to say if we lived in Chicago we would absolutely plan a dinner party in that room with friends. I know that the staff is somewhat formal but they were also very fun!

I have consciously started doing the unthinkable - leaving food on my plate.  I even did that at the kitchen table at Trio - not because the food wasn't good - because it was - but because I can have a little taste of everything on the plate and then save some room for the six or eight courses still to come.

I do the same thing tammylc, In fact I even remember telling a few chef's that they were more than welcome to serve me half or smaller portions cause I was just taking a bite of everything.

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One thing I have taken to doing is limiting my bread intake. That can be very difficult sometimes, though.


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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Has anyone heard that Tramanto is leaving Tru to take of pump room space? If so waht are the plans for the Tru space?

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Has anyone heard that Tramanto is leaving Tru to take of pump room space?  If so waht are the plans for the Tru space?

Rick and Gale are opening some new places in Wheeling (scheduled to open this summer, I think) but last I read, neither was planning to leave TRU. And, as far as I know, the Pump Room is still open for business.

Here's a link to the most recent information I can recall reading about their upcoming plans. It appeared in the March 2 edition of Chicago Magazine's Dish.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

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forgot to post the shot of our menu

IMG_1043.jpg

This is very cool. The addition of the photo is a particularly nice touch that I have never seen anyplace else do before. Nice souvenier indeed!


John Sconzo, M.D. aka "docsconz"

"Remember that a very good sardine is always preferable to a not that good lobster."

- Ferran Adria on eGullet 12/16/2004.

Docsconz - Musings on Food and Life

Slow Food Saratoga Region - Co-Founder

Twitter - @docsconz

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If I can find mine, I'll post it too so you can see what they served us.

How was the steamed lamb? I don't believe I've ever had lamb prepared by steaming.

u.e.


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ronnie: I just heard this on thursday.....it was a from some one who has been dealing with Rick for several years...not saying it may the most reliable source, just saying it was said. Source also said pump room is planning on closing soon.

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ronnie:  I just heard this on thursday.....it was a from some one who has been dealing with Rick for several years...not saying it may the most reliable source, just saying it was said.  Source also said pump room is planning on closing soon.

Very interesting. I've no reason to doubt you -- and things do tend to change very rapidly in the restaurant world. I guess we'll just have to wait and see unless someone else has some credible info to add. That Pump Room news is completely new to me but again, nothing would surprise me and it would hardly be a shock. I think my parents took me there for my graduation dinner from junior high. That was in 1977 and I think it was past its prime then.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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ronnie:  I just heard this on thursday.....it was a from some one who has been dealing with Rick for several years...not saying it may the most reliable source, just saying it was said.  Source also said pump room is planning on closing soon.

Very interesting. I've no reason to doubt you -- and things do tend to change very rapidly in the restaurant world. I guess we'll just have to wait and see unless someone else has some credible info to add. That Pump Room news is completely new to me but again, nothing would surprise me and it would hardly be a shock. I think my parents took me there for my graduation dinner from junior high. That was in 1977 and I think it was past its prime then.

=R=

Last time I heard, Tramonto was acting as consultant at the new Pump Room (it's changing owners) but wasn't moving on from Tru. Maybe things have changed, who knows?

Article here

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Thanks, VeryApe, for the link. Here's a section from the March 15 article:

Chicago's Pump Room restaurant will close in a few months, but fans of dining tradition shouldn't worry about a Berghoff-like loss. The Pump Room will reopen, and it's already under the control of a star chef.

Rick Tramonto, a founding partner at the recently closed Trio in Evanston and executive chef at the ultra-expensive Tru restaurant, is redoing the Pump Room menu.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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Question-what does Tru do when you sit at the Kitchen Table? Is it more interactive, etc? I heard it's a different menu, I was just wondering what's different than in the dining room, and to those who have done both, which did you prefer?

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Elrushbo I haven't done both but in the kitchen you don't actually have a menu- it's the chef's choice. Also the chefs are very interactive, bringing the dishes in and discussing the plates. and of course the staff is very catering to you, a VIP type of attitude.

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Here's a bit more information on the new places in Wheeling, from the Daily Herald's May 9 edition:

The Wheeling village board Monday approved two new restaurants from renowned area chefs that will go inside the Westin North Shore hotel.
Peter Dumon, president of the Harp Group, one of the developers on the Westin hotel project, said the restaurants will feature the cuisine of Rick Tramonto and Gale Gand, who currently work as executive chefs for Tru restaurant in downtown Chicago.

“This is really the culmination of a long national search in which we talked to a couple of dozen national restaurant groups,” he said.

“We didn’t like any of them, so we decided to start our own, and were fortunate enough to start a partnership with Rick Tramonto and Gale Gand, who are arguably the best chefs in the Chicago region,” he said

Star chefs behind food for new Wheeling hotel

Still, I get the feeling that we may not be getting the entire story as far as what this really means for TRU. I guess that time will tell . . .

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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Elrushbo I haven't done both but in the kitchen you don't actually have a menu- it's the chef's choice. Also the chefs are very interactive, bringing the dishes in and discussing the plates. and of course the staff is very catering to you, a VIP type of attitude.

Sounds wonderful! Will have to do that sometime! The photo printed on the menu is a wonderful touch. Your review was excellent, very well written. I liked hearing that there were no 'clunkers' on the menu. There shouldn't be at a place like that...imho, if there are clunkers, it means a chef is too ambitious and trying to do too many courses. I take it you did the late seating at the Chef's Table? Suprised there would be anyone left in the restaurant. Also, I'll have to remember to skip lunch when I try it. After seeing the reviews, it seems like a lot of food at the Chef's Table. Would definitely want to be hungry for that experience!


Edited by Elrushbo (log)

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Just dined at Tru last night... I will have pictures once I get back in town...I had the Summer Collection.

Overall I felt it didn't live up to the hype from the books or anything.

The service was absolutely perfect, dining by your self, you really get to watch and notive everything they are doing. No mistakes in service ettiquite, timing of marking courses, water replenishments, descriptions, in between course timings, everything. Not one mistake or fumble. if you want to get picky, I noticed that their linin was not pressed very well... to many crease marks. That's just one of my pet peeves about fine dining.

Amuse

Piquillo peppers on the bottom, something else, and tomato water gelee on top in three different layers inside a double shot glass. Small Sorrel Leaf on top.

Delicate flavors, something I found to be evident throughout the courses.

Bread and butter: SanFrancisco Style Sourdough, Pumpernickle, and Parmsean Biscuits. Served with two styles of butter: Salted and unsalted... Unsalted was from Vermont.

The sourdough was really flavor lasting and bothered me because of the flavor coating in my mouth. The pumpernickle was my favorite..very robust and flavorful. The biscuit was a little crumbly... I've had better.

I really didn't care for the butters... I felt they weren't very satisfying for some reason.

First Course: Amuse Bouche

Tuna two ways: one with Cucumber Water and the other with apple gelee

Apple gelee was crisp in flavor and soft in texture. Cucumber water was cleansing. Delicate again.

2nd Course: Oyster with Caviar, Scallop carpaccio.

Just wondferful.

3rd Course: Butter Roasted Langoustine, Hearts of Palm, Lemon vinaigrette like sauce.

Best Langoustine I have ever had, you would have thought it was poached slowly in butter because of its melting texture. It was my favorite taste and texture of the night. The lemon mixture was extremely Sour... I felt that when you put everything together in one bight, it was harmony. This plays in a lot of the dishes I had... you needed to have everything at once in order to achieve what I think the Chef wanted to happen in your mouth.

4th Course: Corn Veloute Soup with Corn and Herb Fritters.

THe soup is just luxiurous and extremely powerful in terms of corn. The fritters were perfect in crispy and soft textures. So good.

5th Course: Foie Gras Torchon, Apple walnut, frisee, Radish, Sour Cherry Sauce, Warm Country Bread.

The foie gras by it self seemed very metalic...just more than usual. The components together were spot on perfect, I loved the country bread to enjoy with my foie gras. I took my time to enjoy this one.

6th Course: Grilled Loup De Mer with Braised Fennel, Orange-carrot Nage, Fried Fennel Fern.

Mmmm... I love grilled crispy skin on fish. Fennel kept its flavor and had a perfect bite in texture... not too soft and not too hard. The Nage was flavorful but delicate to the tongue.. almost tingles it.

7th Course: Lamb Saddle with Fingerling, Favas, baby carrots, onions.

Lamb was extremely soft to the chew and flavored with salt thoughout the entire meat. The vegetables seemed okay...

8th Course: Cheese Cart

I had four cheeses.... I can't spell any of them right now and I dont have time to look them up..Im at an Apple Store using their internet :biggrin: but this was one of my more fun courses, I chose to have all the accompaniments that were offered..... good cheeses!

9th Course: Mixed Berry Sparkler.... boy was that in your face! mmm

10th Course: Banana, Bread and butter Pudding, Chocolate Semifreddo, Black Berry.

Her desserts are dazzling and charming to the mouth. Visually she shows her fun side. Delicious Desserts... Amazing almost.

11th Course: Chocolate Ice Cream and Root Beer Float... MMM I like the flavor combo!

12th Course: Mignardise Cart

Chocolate Lollipop, Marshmelllow, peanut and cashew Brittle,candied grapefruit skins

13th Course:Truffles

Parting Gift: Chocolate Madelines.

Overall I felt that the flavors were too subtle. I was dissapointed in that I didn't see any micro greens, no emulsions and foams, nothing innovative. Maybe they are going in a different direction... but nothing even came close to what they had in the book. Oh well :sad: Although the service was amazing, the food was perfect but nothing exciting.... I would say it was just as perfect or better than Alinea's service. As someone who is young and not as experienced as some older cooks and chefs it was extrmemly exciting... I was almost nervious at the beginning.


"cuisine is the greatest form of art to touch a human's instinct" - chairman kaga

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Just dined at Tru last night... I will have pictures once I get back in town...I had the Summer Collection.

Overall I felt it didn't live up to the hype from the books or anything.

The service was absolutely perfect, dining by your self, you really get to watch and notive everything they are doing. No mistakes in service ettiquite, timing of marking courses, water replenishments, descriptions, in between course timings, everything. Not one mistake or fumble. if you want to get picky, I noticed that their linin was not pressed very well... to many crease marks. That's just one of my pet peeves about fine dining.

Amuse

Piquillo peppers on the bottom, something else, and tomato water gelee on top in three different layers inside a double shot glass. Small Sorrel Leaf on top.

Delicate flavors, something I found to be evident throughout the courses.

Bread and butter: SanFrancisco Style Sourdough, Pumpernickle, and Parmsean Biscuits.  Served with two styles of butter: Salted and unsalted... Unsalted was from Vermont.

The sourdough was really flavor lasting and bothered me because of the flavor coating in my mouth. The pumpernickle was my favorite..very robust and flavorful. The biscuit was a little crumbly... I've had better.

I really didn't care for the butters... I felt they weren't very satisfying for some reason.

First Course: Amuse Bouche

Tuna two ways: one with Cucumber Water and the other with apple gelee

Apple gelee was crisp in flavor and soft in texture. Cucumber water was cleansing. Delicate again.

2nd Course: Oyster with Caviar, Scallop carpaccio.

Just wondferful.

3rd Course: Butter Roasted Langoustine, Hearts of Palm, Lemon vinaigrette like sauce.

Best Langoustine I have ever had, you would have thought it was poached slowly in butter because of its melting texture. It was my favorite taste and texture of the night. The lemon mixture was extremely Sour... I felt that when you put everything together in one bight, it was harmony. This plays in a lot of the dishes I had... you needed to have everything at once in order to achieve what I think the Chef wanted to happen in your mouth.

4th Course: Corn Veloute Soup with Corn and Herb Fritters.

THe soup is just luxiurous and extremely powerful in terms of corn. The fritters were perfect in crispy and soft textures. So good.

5th Course: Foie Gras Torchon, Apple walnut, frisee, Radish, Sour Cherry Sauce, Warm Country Bread.

The foie gras by it self seemed very metalic...just more than usual. The components together were spot on perfect, I loved the country bread to enjoy with my foie gras. I took my time to enjoy this one.

6th Course: Grilled Loup De Mer with Braised Fennel, Orange-carrot Nage, Fried Fennel Fern.

Mmmm... I love grilled crispy skin on fish. Fennel kept its flavor and had a perfect bite in texture... not too soft and not too hard. The Nage was flavorful but delicate to the tongue.. almost tingles it.

7th Course: Lamb Saddle with Fingerling, Favas, baby carrots, onions.

Lamb was extremely soft to the chew and flavored with salt thoughout the entire meat. The vegetables seemed okay...

8th Course: Cheese Cart

I had four cheeses.... I can't spell any of them right now and I dont have time to look them up..Im at an Apple Store using their internet :biggrin:  but this was one of my more fun courses, I chose to have all the accompaniments that were offered..... good cheeses!

9th Course: Mixed Berry Sparkler.... boy was that in your face! mmm

10th Course: Banana, Bread and butter Pudding, Chocolate Semifreddo, Black Berry.

Her desserts are dazzling and charming to the mouth. Visually she shows her fun side. Delicious Desserts... Amazing almost.

11th Course: Chocolate Ice Cream and Root Beer Float... MMM I like the flavor combo!

12th Course: Mignardise Cart

Chocolate Lollipop, Marshmelllow, peanut and cashew Brittle,candied grapefruit skins

13th Course:Truffles

Parting Gift: Chocolate Madelines.

Overall I felt that the flavors were too subtle. I was dissapointed in that I didn't see any micro greens, no emulsions and foams, nothing innovative. Maybe they are going in a different direction... but nothing even came close to what they had in the book. Oh well  :sad: Although the service was amazing, the food was perfect but nothing exciting.... I would say it was just as perfect or better than Alinea's service. As someone who is young and not as experienced as some older cooks and chefs it was extrmemly exciting... I was almost nervious at the beginning.

Sounds like a pretty good meal to me. I look forward to the pictures.

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Pictures from my last post:

My 9:15 PM reservation happened on a Monday. I've always been a fan of Rick Tramonto and Gale Gand. I've read everything about Tru, read the books, and the only thing that I haven't done was to eat at the restaurant. Whenever I go to restaurants at this level, I feel nervious and excited at the same time. It's almost that same gut feeling you get when you are waiting for the announcement weather or not you got 1st place or last place. I don't know if that's normal or if it happens to anyone else but for me it does. I decided to go with the Summer Collection.

gallery_28323_3293_16126.jpg

Lobby: Arrived a little bit before the reservation.

gallery_28323_3293_5816.jpg

First Amuse: Piquillo Peppers, Cauliflower Panna Cotta, Tomato Water, Small Sorrel all layered in a shot glass.

gallery_28323_3293_19732.jpg

Bread Service: SanFrancisco Sourdough and Parmesan Biscuit(Biscuits made in house). Later on I had an amazing Pumpernickle which was full of balanced robust flavors. Bread was served with Salted and Unsalted Butter.... I felt they had an off taste of metalic.... these were not my favorite.

gallery_28323_3293_3827.jpg

Second Amuse: I was confused with the two amuses but Im guessing everyone gets the first one and the 2nd one is for the summer collection. This was Raw Tuna served two ways. One in Cucumber water and one with Apple Gelee.

I personally enjoyed the tuna with apple gelee... just very crisp and cleansing at the same time.

gallery_28323_3293_23621.jpg

First Course: Raw Maine Diver Scallop, Kumamoto Oyster, Italian Black Pearl Osetra Caviar, Preserved Lemon.

Clean, Smooth, Citrusy, Salty, Delicious.

gallery_28323_3293_4005.jpg

Second Course: Butter Roasted Langoustine, Hearts of Palm, Sunchoke, Brown Butter.

The langoustine was better than any lobster I have ever had. It melts immediately in your mouth. I felt the hearts of palm and sunchoke were very sour from the lemon but when you had everything together at once, it was harmony. I feel like that was the theme throughout the tasting menu, everything together tastes great but seperately not so great.

gallery_28323_3293_10440.jpg

Third Course: Veloute of Summer Corn and Leek, Corn-Herb Fritters.

The soup had the taste of a 100 ears of corn. The soupe was extremely rich and coating. The Fritters were perfectly crispy and soft in the center that went well with the soup.

gallery_28323_3293_6946.jpg

Fourth Course: Canadian Foie Gras Torchon, Salad of Ranier Cherries, Hazelnuts & Radish, Country Toast, Cherry Jus.

I've never had Foie Gras from Canada but I felt the torchon had a lot more mineral flavor than usual. The walnut salad was sweet and nutty. I also loved that Country Toast as something else to go with the foie gras... I enjoyed this very much so.

gallery_28323_3293_20572.jpg

Fifth Course: Grilled Loup de Mer, Braised Baby Fennel, Tomato-Orange Nage

Im a big fan of grilled fish skin especially bass. The fennel was soft to the bite and firm to the fork, I could drink the nage all day long.

gallery_28323_3293_13323.jpg

Sixth Course: Roasted Elysian Fields Lamb Saddle, Salt-Poached Potatoes, Petite Summer Vegetables, Lamb Jus.

The Lamb was excellent, everything else was okay, I felt the jus was inferrior. I felt it tasted cheap and poorly executed.

gallery_28323_3293_1138.jpg

Seventh Course: The Cheese Cart.

I went for the cheese option and Im glad I did! I can't exactly remember the names but if I ever hear the name I would remember. I chose 4 different cheeses along with all of the accompaniments.

gallery_28323_3293_11808.jpg

Dessert Amuse: Mixed Berry Sparkler

A nice punch in the mouth to wake your senses alive. Intense berry flavor.

gallery_28323_3293_61892.jpg

Single Shot Espresso: Illy Brand with Classical Accompaniments

Nice Crema! :)

gallery_28323_3293_14543.jpg

Eight Course: Gale's Dessert Collection of Banana&Butter Bread Pudding and Chocolate Semi Freddo with Blackberries.

So good! The desserts in my mind were the highlight of the night. The Bread Pudding was tingling to the tongue and the semi freddo was smooth and velvety to the mouth.

gallery_28323_3293_24866.jpg

I really enjoyed Chocolate and rootbeer together... As someone who takes his rootbeer seriously, I felt that chocolate ice cream is a nice partner with the soda.

gallery_28323_3293_14710.jpg

Mignardise Cart: A selection of lolly pops, sweet delights, and candies.

I selected a chocolate lolly pop, Candied Grapefruit Skin, Cashew Brittle, Marshmellow, and a raspberry tart. I really enjoyed all of this even though I was about to pass out on how much food I ate... but my suprise was the grapefruit skin. It was firm on the outside and when you bite into it melted. I usually have to chew on candied citrus rinds to consume them but this one was just extra special.

gallery_28323_3293_43180.jpg

MORE CHOCOLATE: They really do a good job stuffing you!

gallery_28323_3293_32124.jpg

I noticed that the tasting menu had about the same sized portions as Alinea did but I was getting worried because Alinea was serving me twice the amount of courses. Then after eating the cheese course I was stuffed! It's amazing how much food is in the Summer Collection. They also send you away with a complimentary Chocolate Madeline, makes a great midnight snack.

Overall, Flavors were subtle but the desserts are in your face full of flavors. Everything was perfect just not amazing. The only amazing part of the meal was the service. I would go again just for the service alone. I think I was expecting the same kind of food that are in the books. :hmmm:


Edited by JWest (log)

"cuisine is the greatest form of art to touch a human's instinct" - chairman kaga

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JWest,

I've heard credible rumors that with their new deals (for the upcoming Wheeling venues, etc.) now in place, Gale and Rick aren't spending as much time at TRU as they once were. Again, I don't know if it's 100% accurate but if so, it may put some perspective on your most recent meal there.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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I had a feeling about that...

Even though I was almost positive that Tramonto and Gand were not there I asked a server if they were there that night anyways. He lightly laughed about the idea as he was telling me they were not in. I took it as if they're rarely there.


"cuisine is the greatest form of art to touch a human's instinct" - chairman kaga

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