Last week, Noreen, Kathy, and I took a trip to visit our new client, Bobby’s Lincoln Park! We were immediately awed by the beautiful décor of the space and happy to see that Lincoln Park, home of our office, had such an upscale, yet affordable, dining option in the neighborhood. Right from the start we noted the grand chandeliers in the restaurant’s main dining room, and the stunning portrait of the owners’ father, Sam, that aligned the wall. We had a quick chat with the Bobby’s team, and then sat down to enjoy a delicious meal inspired by flavors from all over the world.
While the dining room was spectacular, we could not bear to waste one of the few warm days of the season that we have left, and decided to eat outside instead. The street side patio at Bobby’s is ornate with comfortable seating and lush greenery all around. We sat down, roughly at 5:30 p.m. with about an hour left of the extensive happy hour menu to enjoy. Noreen and I immediately set ourselves off on enjoying one of Bobby’s classic margaritas, while Kathy opted for the Boulevardier with Marker’s Mark Bourbon, Luxardo Bitters, Artisanal Rouge Vermouth, and an orange peel.
We started with appetizers on the advice of our server, Matthew, who was incredibly knowledgeable about the menu and the Bobby’s restaurant (he let us in on the secret that the portrait of Sam in the dining room was from a New Year’s Eve party in the 70s and that it was an homage to his position as the patriarch that started the family’s success in the restaurant industry). We chose the Meatball, with veal, beef, panko, garlic, pomodor sauce, and parmigiana reggiano and the Shortrib and Mushroom Raviolo with black truffle fondue, crispy shallots, and fresh herbs. Both were absolutely delicious, but the Raviolo was to die for. The ingredients were noticeably fresh and the shallots added the perfect texture to the dish.
While the two appetizers and the following entrees we ordered, were all beautifully presented, the real visual showstopper was the Roasted Baby Beet salad with a balsamic reduction, spiced pistachio, orange puree, French feta, and burnt citrus.
The sweet orange puree in the dish balanced the tartness of the beats perfectly, while the creamy feta provided a perfect base for each bite.
For the main course, we went all out. Noreen got the English Pea Risotto, with Fresh English peas, pea puree, pea tendril, and proscitto di parma. You are probably thinking “too much” peas. In which case, you’d be wrong. This dish was the group favorite and it is truly amazing what the Executive Chef and Co-Owner, Augie Arifi, is able to do with basically three ingredients. When you visit Bobby’s Lincoln Park, it is a must try. Kathy ordered the House Made Cavatelli with plum tomato, pancetta, prosciuttio di parma, crumbled sausage, shitake mushroom, and chili flake that just went to show how far an Italian flare can take any dish. I went for a more classic option, or so I thought. I ordered the Skirt Steak. Twelve ounces of quality beef, charred chili-tomatillo salsa, corn, queso fresco, and 3 Sisters grits. I’m a big proponent of not dressing a steak too much. I mean…it’s a steak. Bobby’s changed my mind. The combination of ingredients were the ultimate compliment to the perfectly cooked steak that laid atop of it all. I was in heaven. We all shared. And as you can see, we helped ourselves to a few more drinks.
After a couple cocktails, I excused myself to use the restroom. A weird aside to an otherwise normal post about a dining experience, I know, stay with me. The Bobby’s bathroom is clean and sparkling, just like the rest of the restaurant. But what I found to be most impressive was the changing table in the men’s room. This is an upscale place, but based on the optional kid’s menu, the service, and the changing table, it is clear that this family owned restaurant welcomes families. And in Lincoln Park, that is important. More than that, it is hard, even these days, to find a venue with a baby changing table in the men’s room. I appreciated it. For single fathers, same-sex parents, or even I don’t know…any dad who changes their baby, this is a much need part of any restroom. So thank you Bobby’s for seeing all families.
For more information on Bobby’s Lincoln Park, please visit their website at http://bobbyslincolnpark.com/.