ML - Michigan Avenue

2013 - Issue 5 - September

Michigan Avenue - Niche Media - Michigan Avenue magazine is a luxury lifestyle magazine centered around Chicago’s finest people, events, fashion, health & beauty, fine dining & more!

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Page 87 of 163

SO MANY DINNERS THE SWEET SPOT This romantic nook is perfect for date night. Due to the room's narrow layout, designer Tom Nahabedian created a snaking, sinewy banquette inspired by corner tables found in romantic restaurants in Paris. At table 21, a couple can sit next to each other and gaze into each other's eyes. But its positioning also allows them to take in the rest of the space. It's a perfect date night: one where you can indulge in romance or look around and take in everything—and everyone—else. FROM TOP: Lobster Brindille and the Fantasie au Chocolat. 86 CLOSE TO THE TREE Chef Carrie Nahabedian isn't the only artist at Brindille. Chicago artist Lora Fosberg is behind all the art for Naha and created three stunning pieces hanging in Brindille. She titled the series "Three Kinds of Yes," a nod to "Michael and Carrie Nahabedian and our shared attitude about life." What inspired the pieces? For years Michael talked about opening a restaurant with a tree growing through the middle of the space. I wanted to approximate the idea. What about it says "Brindille" to you? I wanted the work to be sophisticated and formal to meet the design, but also approachable and intriguing to people who might not notice artwork hanging in a restaurant. What effect do you hope your pieces will have? The main idea behind the work is to bring the viewer into a place of reflection. PHOTOGRAPHY BY PAUL STRABBING (LOBSTER); MICHAEL DAVID ROSE (TABLE 21) continued from page 84 Bureau of Architecture and Design, who designed the restaurant. "It's like being transported into a thrilling urban novel set in Paris during La Belle Époque... by way of Chicago in 2013." Any night of the week people fill the room to experience that thrilling novel— and not just for special occasions. On a recent Tuesday, the intimate space with 48 seats plus seven at the bar, bathed in a palette of taupe, lavender, and gray with subtle hints of brown, was filled by 7 PM with people in small groups, on dates—even one ruggedly handsome, well-dressed Italian man sitting solo at the seven-seat bar enjoying a glass of wine and a double steak tartare. With Brindille, Nahabedian has aimed to create a regular neighborhood spot inspired by Parisian restaurants where people come and forget the stresses of the day. "People go out to eat for an experience," she says. "They want to leave their day behind. There are people who eat, and there are others who dine." Brindille, clearly, is for those who dine. They come for the delicious New Brunswick oysters with a warm coddled egg cooked in the oyster's saltwater and topped with osetra caviar; the rich king crab merus with a silky tapioca custard and pink grapefruit; or the French turbot, a beautiful white fish served with French-imported white asparagus and porcini mushrooms. "They treat you beautifully, and the food is amazing," says Luise Wykell, a former dancer and longtime fan of Nahabedian's cooking, who spent the summer working for the New York City Ballet. "The source is her passion and delight in all things culinary." Other Chicagoans who have dined here include chefs Grant Achatz and Kevin Hickey and former Mayor Richard M. Daley—even the Rolling Stones' manager visited when the timeless rockers came through town in June. "The problem we're having," Nahabedian says after being asked why she thinks Brindille is a special place, "is that no one wants to leave." 534 N. Clark St., 312-595-1616; MA MICHIGANAVEMAG.COM 084-086_MA_SC_SoManyDinners_Sept_13.indd 86 8/7/13 2:27 PM

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