While home in Chicago over the weekend for a bridal shower, my parents and I had dinner at Ruxbin Kitchen, one of my favorite spots to dine. You must go! I’m smitten! My first trip there was back in November with my boyfriend Dan, and we absolutely fell in love with the food, decor, and spirit (did I just say spirit? yup!) of the place. I mean, real yum. In November (when it was freeeezing), we savored an unbelievable calamari dish with Korean flavors, garlic fries, and an epic linguine and clams. This time around, highlights were the escolar crudo, octopus with fried chickpeas, beef and broccoli, and the lightest pot de creme EVER. Nate, the kitchen manager, door greeter, expediter, and in-house dry soda maker has welcomed me both times–and remembered that I was from LA. We also got to chat with Vicki, who opened Ruxbin with her brother and chef, Edward Kim. It’s so obvious they’re all passionate about what they do, which is part of what makes it such a special place to visit.
Bon Appetit named Ruxbin one of the best new restaurants of the year in 2011 (along with my one of my favorite LA spots, Son of a Gun). It’s just one of those places that manages to feel special and new every time you go. AND it’s BYOB–both times I’ve taken this bottle of Pinot Noir. One time I saw a table shaking their own martinis! They don’t take reservations (both times I went at opening on a Sunday and was seated right away–but there was a gathering outside before the doors opened). See the current menu here.
Can’t wait to go back next time I’m in Chicago!