Featured Restaurant on Rick's DineSite Journal

DineSite: Cafe Bernard
Website: http://www.cafebernard.com/index.html

2100 North Halsted
Chicago, IL

Phone 773-871-2100
Cuisine: French
Review: 14.5/20
Journal entries: Date, Atmosphere, Food, Winelist, Service, Other
Aug 6, 2005

Small local corner authentic French Cafe that is a bit dated and antiquated. Effort is made to achieve an authentic French feeling with the dark decor, authentic posters on the walls and the stylish European music. The comfort setting is betrayed a bit by it being so dark, a bit cramped, and too much intimacy between the dining area and the restroom. Set in the trendy residential West Lincoln Park neighborhood, the outside dining is a bit overwhelmed by the urbanity of the traffic and street since the seating area is so limited.
Atmosphere - 3/5

Food - The classic French cuisine is authentic and of high quality. A nice selection of starters provided a fabulous pan seared Foie Gras, Duck Pate, mussels, and an interesting but uninspiring lobster ravioli. Although limited the range of entrees should meet anyone's desire. The filet of beef was very good, the duck tasty, the scallops, trout and salmon all very enjoyable, all accented by garlic mashed, steamed veggies, tasty cabbage, and a rich and succulent sauce. Many of the sauces were a bit too sweet, almost overpowering or taking away from the salmon, and competing with the peppercorn steak au poivre. Portions are appropriate and suitable and presentations are fundamentally stylish and nicely done. Small but adequate selection of deserts were very good. 
Food - 4.00/5

Wine - Winelist is a basic and offers a fundamental selection of French wines from several regions with a modest selection of Californian wines. Their modest originality is forgiven by their welcome and liberal corkage policy and fee. Selections are predominantly French from the major regions.   Wines are moderately priced. They offer a BYOB policy with a reasonable corkage fee (worthy of .5 rating point in of itself!* which allowed us to bring a magnificent bottle as a perfect compliment to the outstanding food. See tasting notes Journal.). 
Wine - 3.5/5

Service was personable and adequate despite the server being busy with numerous tables.
- 4/5

Overall - 14.5/20

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