Chicago: David Burke's Primehouse

Restaurant Week excursion #2 was David Burke's Primehouse. I went last year for Restaurant Week with a visiting friend and we enjoyed our meal so much that I jumped at the chance to go again this year:

I love the caricatures lining the wall:

The cheese popover was just as delicious as I remembered:

The presentation was also too cute for words. The servers looked really cool coming out of the kitchen with 5 measuring cups in each hand.

For my appetizer, I went with the lobster bisque with green apple essence and lobster spring roll:

I enjoyed the spring roll more than the soup itself. The soup was a little on the bland side for my tastes.

One of my friends ordered the surf and turf dumplings:

The surf dumplings were filled with "angry" lobster (whatever that means), while the turf ones were made with braised short rib. I tried this last year and remembered not being all that impressed by it, which is why I decided on the soup instead. My friend said it was just "okay" and accompanied that with a shrug of her shoulders. Guess it hasn't improved over the last year.

With my other friend ordering the wedge salad, we managed to get one of each of the offered appetizers:

The sides were brought to us family style:

Both the whipped potatoes and the mushrooms were good, but we wish there was more of both.

Last year, my friend and I split the Delmonico steak and the 40 day dry aged steak "burker", both of which we enjoyed immensely. Unfortunately, the Delmonico is no longer on the menu. That makes me want to cry a little. The fat in that steak was so...beautiful.

I chose the burger over the filet mignon:

Here's a cross section of my medium rare burger:

It was as good as I remembered, with its garlic spinach, crispy shallots, bacon mayo, and toasted potato bun. A little on the salty side, which I like. But alas, where were my truffle asiago fries?! Last year, the burger came with these amazing fries...and this year there was only a slice of pickle. Not cool.

Two of my friends ordered the filet mignon:

The thing about filet mignon that always bugs me is the tiny cut of meat. But I guess meat is meat and quality should trump quantity.

Dessert was interesting. I had the chai creme brulee with candied ginger biscotti:

The chai taste was very strong, which got a little overwhelming toward the end, but still a fun dessert all in all.

My friends were tempted by the tanzanie brownie with kahlua ice cream and banana mousse:

To be honest, I was very disappointed in my second Primehouse experience. Last year's Restaurant Week menu was just so much better. Instead of the 3 appetizer options we had this year, there were 5 before, one of which was the kobe beef sashimi with himalayan salt, mushroom chips, and truffle mayo. I still think about it from time to time. Compared to the 4 entrée options this year, there were 6 last time. In place of the filet mignon, there were the 7 oz NY sirloin, the 6 oz petite filet, and the 7 oz Delmonico steak that I loved so much.

Even the number of sides has been downgraded. In addition to the potatoes and mushrooms, last year we were also brought asparagus with shallots and creamed spinach.

Ahh...such are the times we're living in.

To rub salt in my wound, a friend later told me via Facebook that you can get the Primehouse burger for 1o bucks during their weekend brunch special. And that includes fries!

I can't help but feel gypped. I mean, $22 for lunch is still a good deal, but compared to last year...yea, not so much.

David Burke's Primehouse
616 N Rush St
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 660-6000


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