The Bristol

So me and my friend Sarah went out to The Bristol in Bucktown over the weekend, and damn was it tasty! So I found this place by just wandering through mertromix for a while and since it had been getting great reviews it seemed like a good idea.  The Bristol is a fairly small place, it seated about 50 people it looked liked, but there was also a private dinning area upstairs, which I assume would seat about the same amount.  We went on Sunday night so we just walked in a sat down.  Even with it being Sunday night the place was still half full, good sign.  The food is American but is done similar to tapas, as in each dish is small and you order a couple to share between people.  To begin, we where given a wine and beer menu that was something like 20 pages long.  Needless to say, they have an extensive selection of wine and bottled beer.  I settled for an imperial stout they had on tap, and Sarah got a sparkling wine.  Both were delicious.

After the drinks we ordered some “bar snacks” as they are called there.  We got an order of duck fat fries and stuffed chicken wings.  The fries were very, very good.  The only other place I have had duck fat fries is when I go to Hot Doug’s, but they do seem to be tastier at Bristol.  The fries are served with their homemade ketchup and mayo.  Both are good, but their ketchup had a distinct smoky flavor to it that made it all the more memorable.  Next we got the stuffed chicken wings.  I was not really sure what to expect when we ordered it since they are supposed to be chicken wings stuffed with chorizo and blue cheese (I had never heard of such a thing, so I was intrigued). Sadly, they turned out to be the only real disappointment of the night.  They were basically tiny nuggets what had chorizo and blue cheese in them.  While they were tasty, an order only came with three small nuggets, which cost $8. Not a very good deal.  Next came the main courses.   First we got Parmesan crusted sausage with lentils, which was my bet for the best dish of the night.  There were four good-sized chunks of the sausage and a little mound of lentils.  The sausage just feel apart when you cut it up, and tasted fantastic. Next we had grilled octopus with chickpeas.  I had never had octopus before, so this was new for me.  Turns out it tastes like calamari (big surprise) and was also very good.  They had put a citrus sauce over the dish that was quite tasty.  The chickpeas were a bit hard, but still good.

We were still a bit hungry after this, again small portions, so we put in an order of monkey bread.  It came straight from the oven in its own little cast iron pot and was served with a dill sauce.  As opposed to normal monkey bread, this was not very sweet, but it was doughy and once again, very tasty.  To finish off the meal we had some home made nutty butters and milk chocolate mouse (I don’t think it was exactly chocolate mouse but close enough). It was very creamy, not too heavy, and delicious when eaten alone or with a nutty butter.   It was all very, very, very tasty.  Also the service was very prompt and very nice.  We did not wait very long for our food, and the plates got cleared almost as soon as we finished with each dish.  The bill was around 70 for the two of us, which is not terrible considering we had drinks, five dishes, and dessert, and it was pretty much the most flavorful dinner I may have ever had. I will definitely go back.


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