Holidays at the restaurant. A warm feeling of Trattoria embraces you when the plates arrive at Terzo Piano. Italian cuisine with all the bells and whistles: fine antipasti, home-made pasta, focaccia with oat cheese and smoked fish crème, Beef tagliata or - alluding to American cuisine - the Uno, Due, Tre Burgers, a combination of lamp, beef and shrimp burgers. The ingredients are not flown in from Italy but come from regional organic farmers. They put great emphasis on carefully selected cheese from local producers. The view couldn't be any better: The windows almost start on the floor and provide views on the Loop district from three different angles. During warmer months the casual terrace is an excellent alternative. The restaurant with its many white shades and clear lines very much resembles an artist studio. Unsurprisingly, Terzo Piano is at home in the Art Institute of Chicago.
It's the raising star in Chicago: Chris Nugent left the fabulous Les Nomades and opened his own restaurant with his wife Nina. Small but mighty, with 34 seats, golden chairs and benches that match the shiny metallic tables. The composition is loosened up by bright walls and nooks with gently lit art works. Equally perfectly arranged are the plates, almost like paintings. The dishes are an intelligent synthesis of French cuisine and an abundance of modern ideas. Poached lobster is combined with maitake mushrooms and agnolotti with pumpkin stuffing. In addition you'll be served soup made of lobster, coconut, curry and liquorice foam. Technically, the courses are prepared in a perfect fashion - which is self-evident for Nugent. Many basic products are cultivated by Chris and Nina themselves: sorrel, strawberry spinach, Indian cress, and chart. By the way: you can bring your own wine.
Is this a wine bar with food or a restaurant with wine bar? Sitting in the Telegraph, you'll be inclined to think about this question. And you might need one or two bottles until finding the solution. This restaurant is definitely a must-see for wine freaks; food journalists rank the bar among the best in the country. Thanks to the extraordinary range of wines that is devoted particularly to one colour: orange. That's the colour of preferably natural wines without chemicals and small amounts of sulphur. In the basement of the bar you'll find especially European wines from small vintners - almost a bit avant-garde. The dishes by Johnny Anderes are equally remarkable and match the wines. Apposite to the style of the Telegraph, mostly regional and gently produced ingredients are granted access to the kitchen. The cooking style? American, a touch of France, seasonal, and surprising.