So many mystery posts, so few guest blog posts! The point of the mystery spot posts is to give freakish restaurant fanatics like me a chance to identify a local restaurant by its art, mirror, wall, door, floor, etc., and then blog about something they love about the Chicago dining scene. Some guessers take a pass at blogging, while others are gung-ho like local writer/editor Wendy Wollenberg, who guessed the mystery chandelier post from a few weeks back (the answer was 16 in Trump Tower). I was so excited when she wanted to write about her recent 10-course culinary adventure at Tru’s coveted kitchen table…but also quite jel to say the least…her pics and post to follow. Keep on guessing, and you too can get your blog on.
Truly, Madly, Deeply
I recently had the great, unexpected pleasure of being invited to join a friend’s birthday gathering at Tru’s revered Kitchen Table. As the name suggests, the Kitchen Table is indeed located within the acclaimed restaurant’s kitchen, which sounds like it might add pressure to an otherwise enjoyable evening. However, the dining table is actually in a glassed-in room, which makes you feel part of the action without anticipating being asked to pick up a spatula. My (incredibly generous) friend had set everything up in advance, noting any food allergies or aversions (I’m not much of a meat-eater) or the presence of teetotalers (one of our guests, usually a self-respecting boozer, happened to be preggers at the time), letting us sit back, relax and take it all in. During our 10-course adventure, we sampled everything from a knockout strawberry-tomato gelée with Parmesan and haricot vert, to a petite frog leg with roasted garlic, carrot and watercress, to a pan-seared foie gras with diver scallop, white beans and “smoke gel.” (For courses involving meat, executive chef Tim Graham made me a veggie or fish substitute, which, to my palate, lacked for absolutely nothing.) We reveled in wines from such far-fetched lands as Madeira and Long Island. We watched in awe as pastry chef Meg Galus lovingly crafted her breathtaking desserts, which were chosen for each of us based on our reactions to the previous nine courses. And, man, did they nail it. I was the grateful recipient of a roasted plum with brioche and vanilla brown butter. Somehow, our gracious host discerned I would choose fruit over chocolate every time when it comes to dessert. It’s this attention to detail that makes a four-hour-plus meal more than just dinner. Tru, 676 N. St. Clair Street, 312.202.0001