Fine Food Field Trip

Monday ‘s are always hard, recuperating from the weekend and getting back into the work routine.  This week a fun food field trip cured my Monday blues.  I was lucky to get to tag along with Harlene Ellin at Fine (Design Dine & Wine) as she visited one Chicago’s newest restaurants.  It was neat to see her in action and see learn about her process picking restaurants to visit, deciding what to write about, design aspects, the challenging of sampling enough food from the menu with only two people to share.  The design perspective was especially interesting to me, given I know zilch about design.  Very cool seeing it thru the eyes of a professional!

Exactly what I love about her site, she takes into consideration the whole experience of dining out.  Fine details each restaurant in three parts; the design, the beverages, and of course the food.  Any of these elements can really can make or break your experience, outstanding food alone just doesn’t cut it.  Eating out these days, spending hard-earned money, people definitely expect the full package, at least I know I do.  Harlene knows how to pick ’em, most of the Chicago places she visited last year ended up on the Chicago Magazine’s best new restaurants list, and the recommendations are not just limited to Chicago, I have a few bookmarked for my November trip to NYC, as well as a running list for Chicago.

No spoilers here, you’ll need to stayed tuned to Fine.  However, I will give you a preview of the deliciousness…

And a design idea I plan to borrow for patio dining this summer…

fine condiment potsEvery Monday should be this good!


  1. Jilly says:

    NUM!!!! That looks fantastic! I love her blog too. I have a place to bring you too here. We had dinner there again on Saturday night, it is always a favorite! You would LOVE it! Such unique foods and flavors!

    The Foie Gras Tortellini, to die. . .

  2. Biz says:

    Lucky!! OMG, that burger looks amazeballs! Love the colored pot idea too.

    I am taking next Wednesday off – going to the Green City Market in Lincoln Park and FINALLY going to the French Market at the train station – I’ve been dreaming about this sandwich from Pastoral – salumi basquese – spicy hand made salami, olive oil, piquillo peppers and field greens – with manchego cheese!! Cannot wait. 😀

  3. Anita at Hungry Couple says:

    Thanks for the link. I’m going to have a good look at her site. Brian and I do these amateur reviews but I’d love to see how it’s done more professionally. You can bookmark NYC restaurants to your heart’s content but it’s an endless list. I’m a native New Yorker and am still constantly surprised and amazed. This is such a foodie town. But then again, so is Chicago. Enjoy!

Comments are closed.