Evoking classic steakhouses of yore, Al's offers dark wood decor, a tuxedo-clad waitstaff, the wafting fragrance of cigar smoke, a nautical-themed bar, and tableside preparations. There are no printed menus; waiters recite dinner options, and the kitchen practically invites special requests. Beef, duck, veal, lamb, lobster, fish, chicken, and pasta are prepared in a seemingly endless list of variations. Try a crab-stuffed filet or lamb Ettinger for something unusual. For a sweet ending, it's hard to go wrong with luscious bananas Foster.
This elegant, understated restaurant is the ideal place to celebrate special occasions. A favorite dish is the lobster albanello served in a creamy mushroom sauce with spaghetti or the mixed seafood, mussels, clams, and shrimp in a thick, tasty marinara sauce. The osso buco is served with risotto Milanese. Tasting menu for two $135-170.
Owned by the same folks who run the popular Tony's restaurant next door, this downtown bar does a booming business at lunch time and after work. Great drinks stand alongside a menu that includes burgers, salads, pasta dishes, sandwiches and appetizers. A casual, yet decidedly who's who atmosphere pervades the space.
Fresh ingredients--that's the hallmark of this restaurant. The chef's philosophy is to use simply, seasonal, fresh ingredients in his creations. American noveau dishes are offered in a welcoming atmosphere that's perfect for a whole meal or simply ordering appetizers and drinks after work.
Classic old favorites are updated and enlivened at this colorful and laid-back restaurant. Meatloaf is made with veal instead of hamburger and blended with red peppers, spinach, and mushrooms. Piquant tomato gravy replaces the traditional ketchup. Creamed spinach is made more flavorful with smoked Gouda cheese, the taste of mashed potatoes is heightened with roasted garlic. Desserts feature the irresistible caramel pecan apple pie made with tangy Granny Smith apples.
Set in a former factory, the restaurant is a cozy mix of brick, wood, leather, and copper. It features two levels, fireplaces, and an exhibition kitchen, and it's become a regular destination for city diners. The menu treads the ground between Californian and Italian fare, offering dishes like potoato-crusted halibut and braised rabbit with goat cheese polenta. They're a great prelude to dessert treats like the locally-favored gooey butter cake, tempered with a glass of cold milk.
This popular, multilevel restaurant is located in the Benton Park district. With its exposed brick walls, polished wood floors, huge windows, and old fashioned bar, it exudes a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere. Start with the honey mustard shrimp or stuffed mushrooms in a light cheese sauce. The seasonal menu features hand-cut steaks, lamb, and veal chops, and such fresh fish and seafood dishes as Tuscan sea bass. All are prepared with a marvelous blend of herbs, marinades, and sauces. Reservations are recommended.