Santa Barbara Sea Urchin Chanwanmushi
Sweet Corn Soup
Grilled North Atlantic Squid
Berkshire Pork Tenderloin
72-Hour Braised Short Rib
Sweet Potato Pie
Huckleberry Ice Cream
Chilled Miso Soup
Squash Blossom Beignet
Terrine of Heirloom Tomatoes
Caramelized Cauliflower & Beet “Lasagna”
Oregon Porcini Tart
Kabocha Squash Sorbet
When the boy and I took a trip to Chicago in October, we were planning to go to a different restaurant but on during the drive, I was able to make a reservation at Charlie Trotter’s!
When we were heading to the restaurant I was confused since the street seemed like a residential area. The restaurant itself was very cute and small. There were two floors with about 10 tables on each floor. We sat on the second floor which seemed more spacious than the first.
The menu is a full course with either the Grand Menu (meat/fish) or the Vegetable Menu. I went with the vegetable, the boy with the grand.
The boy first had the Santa Barbara Sea Urchin Chawanmushi with Myoga and Apple. I really liked the shape of the plate. If I remember correctly the boy was pretty pleased.
My first plate was Chilled Miso Soup with Braised Rishiri Kombu & Finger Lime. They did a good job with the Asian Fusion. The taste was very japanese but slightly modern. I liked it a lot and I was glad it was light and refreshing.
I’m thinking something was wrong with the menu because this is clearly salmon and not sweet corn soup. It looks delicious and was delicious obviously!
Mine was Squash Blossom with Zucchini, Black Truffle, & Carmellini Beans. I always wanted to squash blossom and I was pretty delighted with the plate!
This was his Grilled North Atlantic Squid with Couscous, Bok Choy & Carrot Juice. Yum… although it looks like a scallop…? I can’t remember.
This was the Terrine of Heirloom Tomatoes with White Sesame & Daikon. I don’t like tomatoes but everything else was good and the tomatoes were actually edible. But I still despise the fruit.
Continuing on.. his Berkshire Pork Tenderloin with Oregon Matsutake Mushrooms, Tsuba Mame Miso & Braised Salsify. Whew a mouthful, The mushrooms were goooood Matsutake!! yumm. we were impressed!
Here is my Caramelized Cauliflower & Beet “Lasagna.” Holy crap this was good! Everything was so soft and just melting in my mouth! Even though all my plates were light and refreshing, I was geting so full..
Here’s the 72- hour Braised Short Rib with Tamarind, Pickled Kohlrabi & Lotus Root. I remember the boy saying the ribs were really tender and delicious. By this point the two of us were so full though we couldn’t finish our last entrees
My last entree was Oregon Porcini Tart with Black Mission Fig, Fairytale Eggpant & Goat CheeseI really really liked this one so much. I was bummed my stomach couldn’t handle anymore food. The figs were amazing and everything just went so perfectly. Ahh my mouth is watering just thinking about it.
Our breather and mouth refresher. He had a Cucumber Sorbet with Compressed Honeydew Melon & Candied Cumin. It was reallyy really good. Refreshing and light but still really tasted like cucumber and sorbet! He really liked it and so did I.
Mine was a Kabocha Squash Sorbet with Pickled Celery & Curried Peanuts. Mine was a little heavier but still tasted just like kabocha! So creative!
Finally, the part of a meal I love most. I was really excited about this despite my stomach already about to burst. The first dessert for him was the Sweet Potato Pie with Orange Marmalade, Sunflower Sorbet & Cinnamon Marshmallow. The sorbet was really good, it was more like nutbutter ice cream. Ahh I want to eat it again…
I had a Pineapple Tomatillos with Fresh Blackberries & Yogurt Gelato. I think I liked his dessert better. But this one had a soothing taste.
We were already really full but trying to remember if we still had another dessert or if this was the end. Then it came. He had a Huckleberry Ice Cream with Dark Chocolate & Candied Vanilla Bean. He barely finished this, so I happily helped him but even I couldn’t eat the whole thing. Very chocolatey.
My last dessert was a Milk-Chocolate Semifreddo with Champagne Grapes & Candied Hazelnuts. I love hazelnuts but I don’t think I’m as a big of a fan of semifreddo. I was a little disappointed with my desserts but that’s b/c I’m super picky. Of course they still tasted amazing though.
And lastly, with the check came out petit fours. This was the most disappointing part of the whole meal. I didn’t like the two on the left. Just tasted like confectionary sweets from a mediocre store. Just too sweet. The jellies and white chocolate sandwiches tasted better though.
I think this was by far the best dinner I’ve ever had. It last 3 hours and was unforgettable with the food and conversation.
Unfortunately, I heard this place will be closing its doors soon.