Walton Street Kitchen + Bar Restaurant Review – New 3 Course Prix Fixe Menu

Coowners, Ryan and Anna O’Donnell

Chicago’s Walton Street Kitchen + Bar has launched a brand new daily 3 course prix fixe for $38 daily from 4-5:45pm. The restaurant, run by executive chef, Jon Keeley, simplifies your ordering process while you enjoy menu highlights at a great deal at this Gold Coast neighborhood spot.

 

Here I am enjoying a sparkling rose in the library lounge

 

The main dining room bar

 

Guests can choose from a selection of starters, entrees and desserts, which is a great value and perfect for Gold Coast shoppers, pre-theater diners, neighborhood locals, or anyone looking for a delicious deal during the busy work week.

 

The delicious menu offers the following options below:

Starters, choice of
Tomato Bisque – gruyere cheese
Walton Street Greens – local greens, shaved vegetables, champagne vinaigrette
Chicken Noodle – garden vegetables, carrot-top pesto crostini
Caesar Wedge – bill’s dressing, parmesan, buttered crumbs

Entrees, choice of
Skuna Bay Salmon- potato + squash hash, chive beurre blanc
Waygu Meatloaf – charred broccolini, whipped potstoes, onion rings ancho – chile bbq
Crystal Valley Chicken – braised kale, turnips, sweet potatoes, banyuls vinegar jus
Berkshire Pork Chop – mustard spaetzle, napa cabbage, caramelized apples, cider reduction

Desserts, choice of
Butterscotch Creme Brûlée – maldon sea salt, whipped creme fraiche
Ice Cream + Sorbets, three scoops
Ice Cream flavors: vanilla, cream cheese, cinnamon, milk chocolate
Sorbet flavors: spiced pear, banana coconut, passion fruit, mixed berry

 

Front entrance

 

Opened only since September, Walton Street Kitchen + Bar was started by owners Ryan and Anna O’Donnell. The overall menu showcases thoughtfully executed American cuisine, along with an amazing beverage program featuring a healthier approach to cocktails, an international wine selection, and a clever “designated driver” section that offers non-alcoholic drinks.

 

The cozy library lounge

 

Walton Street offers a cozy library lounge, in the two-level Gold Coast concept. I was seated in the lounge while I waited to meet my friend for dinner. The 1,200-square-foot Lounge resembles elegant libraries found in European mansions with a wooden floor, vintage rugs, a fireplace, books lining the walls, and perfectly worn leather chairs, settees and ottomans. (A variety of the books and ornaments were supplied by the owner’s family).

 

 

The cozy library lounge

 

A soft glow emanates from walls sconces, floor lamps and tabletop candles. Custom-made wood cabinets not only provide a spot for top-shelf Scotches and whiskeys and a thoughtful selection of artifacts, they also hide the cocktail-making process going on behind them. Several of the wall paintings were created by Ryan O’Donnell’s mother. I sat on a couch right next to the warm fire, while sampling smooth, flavorful Napue Gin from Finland, recommended by my server, Jim, who was eatery knowledgeable – the lounge’s offered spirits.

 

Napue Gin from Finland

When my friend finally arrived, we sat down for the 3 course prix fixe menu in the main dining room, which was very aesthetically pleasing. A beautiful custom chandelier hangs through the two-floor vertical space in the center. The hosts at the stand at the top of the stairs provide an immediate warm welcome to guests arriving in the 6,000-square-foot area. In the middle of the room is a square 28-seat square bar. The spacious area also includes elevated tables and dining booths and other booths to sit on along the windows that boasts a great view of downtown State Street. (I also snuck a peak into the private dining room which has two way windows looking into the kitchen).

 

Main dining room

 

The main dining room

The wonderful benefit of a prix fixe menu is that you can enjoy high end food at a restaurant for an affordable, fixed price. The downside? Usually the menu will only offer certain dishes and drinks. Sometimes there can be flexibility and Walton Street was no exception. When I asked our server, Antione, for vegetarian options for the second course, he was more than happy to ask to the chef, who was very accommodating.

Evening spirits

Our 3 course $38 prix fixe menu began with fabulous drinks (Kombucha Moscow Mule and a 2017 Domains Wachau Gruner Veltiner white wine from Wachau, Austria). The starter for me was the Walton Street Greens (local greens, shaved vegetables, champagne vinaigrette). It was a beautiful salad with various vegetables, colors, textures and tastes. The champagne vinaigrette was light and highlighted the different vegetables. My friend had the tomato bisque with gruyere cheese. The soup had a lovely presentation but he would have liked a bit more flavor.

Walton Street greens salad

 

Roasted sunchokes dish

 

Tomato Bisque with gruyere cheese

My friend’s entrée was much more satisfactory: the Berkshire Pork Chop with mustard spaetzle, napa cabbage, caramelized apples, and cider reduction. Being a spaetzle fan, I had to sample-it was delicious. My friend loved the tenderness of the porkchop and the standard apple. As for myself, I enjoyed a specially prepared vegetarian dish not offered in the prix fixe menu: roasted sunchokes with white corn grits, ratatouille and salsa verde. Roasting the sunchokes brought out a creamy starchiness that paid tribute to the underappreciated root vegetable.

 

Berkshire Porkchop

The desserts were also simple, yet a tasty finale to our meal. A savory butterscotch crème brûlée seasoned with maldon sea salt and whipped creme fraiche. The torched caramelized topping was perfect. We had ordered a trio of Walton Street’s fresh, organic sorbet. Three scoops of distinct fruit creations (spiced pear, banana coconut, passion fruit) with mouth-popping flavors.

Butterscotch creme brulee

 

Trio of sorbets

Walton Street Kitchen + Bar is a great place in the heart of the Gold Coast whether you want a sit down fine dining experience, a happy hour, or to simply kick back your feet and enjoy a cocktail in the library lounge. The establishment pays detailed attention to its food, spirits, service, atmosphere, and overall experience. Stop by when you’re in town-you won’t regret it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos by Jennifer Lunz. Featured image by Neil Burger.

For more information on Walton Street Kitchen + Bar, or to make a reservation, please call 773-570-3525, or visit the  waltonstreetchicago website.

LOCATION
912 N State Street
Chicago, IL 60610

HOURS
dinner / lunch / brunch
Monday 11:30AM – 10PM
Tuesday 11:30AM – 10PM
Wednesday 11:30AM – 10PM
Thursday 11:30AM – 10PM
Friday 11:30AM – 11PM
Saturday 10:00AM – 11PM
Sunday 10:00AM – 9PM
Lounge Open 4:30PM Daily

PARKING
Valet Parking offered for $17
Begins at 4:30pm Daily

EMAIL
info@waltonstreetchicago.com

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