weeks months ago, my friend Beany and I met up for a girls weekend in Chicago.
After some google-mapping; we had a plan for dinners out, spa time and extensive shopping. We were ready.
After settling in at the adorable Hotel Monaco, we headed to RPM Italian on Friday night for dinner. Being devotees of Giuliana and Bill, my friend and I were excited to try their newest restaurant venture.
We arrived at the restaurant a bit early hoping to sit at the bar; but (as expected) it was
jam-packed. There is both a wrap-around bar that people were dining at and bar tables that people were dining at; so felt a little funny cramming between people eating dinner to order drinks.
We settled in the lobby (drink-less) to wait and people-watch. And oh my, what a scene. This place is definitely attracting the see and be seen crowd in Chicago and we saw them all! Anyone in town with a wildly inappropriate outfit was there, and the wait was worth it just for that!
Promptly at our reservation time; we were seated at a table near the DJ in the back. We loved our table, as it had a view of the entire bar/restaurant (and conveniently located near the cameras who were filming G&B!). BUT….the DJ? Um, nuts. I realize we were in the back of the bar area and it was late on a Friday night; but when you have a dining room full of people eating dinner; please do not pump the house music at full volume. It definitely took away from the enjoyment of the meal (and blocked our view of G&B!)
Enough about DJ Full Volume….on to the main event….
The. Food. Was. Amazing.
I loved how the menu was organized. It was broken into small plates, salads, appetizers, pastas and then more traditional entrees. Everything was reasonably priced and encouraged to share. Beany and I needed no encouragement; we just got to ordering.
It seems like alot (ok, it was); but the portions are sized perfectly for sharing.
We LOVED the baby peppadew peppers stuffed with provolone and could have easily made a meal out of them. The chicken liver crostinis were smooth and rich. My friend loved Mama DePandi’s pasta, and while I’m not a huge fan of bucatini; I thought the sauce was fresh and bright. My polenta with a runny egg and truffle oil was all comfort (read: I wanted to curl up with it on a Sunday afternoon and watch Say Anything) and the fresh burrata was tangy with the right amount of chew. The brussels sprouts salad was the only miss for us. It looked gorgeous, but the shredded sprouts were raw and a bit too astringent with the tangy dressing. After our smorgasbord of comfort food, it just felt a little off.
After rolling ourselves out of the restaurant, we vowed to return….which I will do (spoiler alert!) when I go back to Chicago this summer….
Hey, its my kind of town.
Stay tuned…. a few more Chicago restaurant recaps to come!