One of my favorite things about Spring, as the weather gets warmer people in Chicago flock to the nearest patio. There's nothing quite like sipping wine on a patio in the summertime. And what better time for a restaurant to roll out its new spring menu! On May 15th, Lincoln Square's French-inspired hidden gem, Bistro Campagne, introduced its new seasonal menu filled with a wide variety of appetizers and entrees. The restaurant was established back in 2002 under Chef Michael Altenberg who strived to create exquisite French cuisine. Now current Chef Luke Creagan has a keen eye for detail and works hard to create seasonal dishes with palate enticing flavors.
I immediately fell in love with the atmosphere. It reminded me of some of the quaint restaurants one would find in my hometown of Geneva, IL, only with a much more sophisticated menu. And while I've never been to France, I can only imagine how amazing it would be to sip wine at a spot like Bistro Campagne, overlooking the French countryside. Yes please.
A little side note, after doing some research on the restaurant, I found that they are one of few dining establishments that is part of the Sanctuary Restaurants campaign, which works to create safe havens in Chicago for those for immigrants, Muslims and LGBTQ communities. Yet another reason why I throughouly enjoyed my dining experience.
I brought along my friend Megan from Bowtiful Life and while it's not your typical girl's night ambience, I could definitely see it being ideal for a romantic night out.
The whole evening the staff was very pleasant and accommodating. It was a little comical when we went to order our wine because our waitress was a little wary and proceeded to ask us for our I.D.s. This tends to be a common occurrence when Megan and I are together. We must look young for our age because we get carded almost everywhere we go. But at the end of the day I know I'm going to appreciate that down the road (or so I'm told).
Megan ordered the Steak Frites which has sustainably raised beef, Bordelaise sauce, maître d’hôtel butter, and pommes frites. She opted to go with the Painted Hills Natural Filet Mignon as opposed to the Hanger Steak. I was lucky enough to snag a bite or two of the steak and we both agreed it was the best we had ever tasted. It was so flavorful and literally melted in your mouth.
I, on the other hand, opted for a little lighter option, the Saumon which has Loch Duart Salmon, Klug Farms asparagus, ramp-butter, Walla Walla onion puree, and pickled ramps. It was absolutely delicious, the asparagus was tender and the onion puree complimented the salmon so well.
Overall we had an incredible dining experience. Unfortunately, we were unable to experience the outdoor patio area (which is super cute) but that just gives us an excuse to come back in the near future. Thanks again to Alex and staff at Bistro Campagne for inviting us out for a lovely evening!
Do you have a favorite hidden gem in Chicago? I would love to hear!