Home American RL Grill, Michigan Avenue

RL Grill, Michigan Avenue

by Krista

RL GrillRL Grill
115 East Chicago Avenue

Date of Last Visit: Sunday, January  16, 2011

The Damage: $30ish

The Background: Retail therapy. Chicago’s Michigan Avenue. That’s what I was up to when hunger called. I had this idea in my head that the lounge at NoMi in the Park Hyatt would be the place to escape to, but I totally forgot they were closed for renovations. (Poor guys…they get a Michelin star. And close for renovations.) So RL Grill across the street it was. (RL as in Ralph Lauren, or Ralph Lifschitz as he used to be known back in The Bronx.)

The Entrance: I like the feel of the place. Clubby as in old mens’ club. Library-ish. Fireplace. I take a very small table in the bar and proceed to order my lunch. It’s a soup and sandwich sort of day.

RL Grill Soup & SandwichI was kind of excited for my toasted cheese sandwich and tomato soup, mostly because of the weather. The tomato soup was lovely. But the cheese on my sandwich? Not really toasted. I was hoping for something hotter. Cheesier. Toastier.

RL Grill Ladies LooI took a moment to admire the tilework in the bathroom. The Ladies’ room at RL Grill is perhaps the brightest ladies’ room I’ve ever been in in my entire life. Seriously, it’s time for botox.

RL Grill Bread BasketI returned to my table and contemplated restaurant waste. How can one person possibly eat all this bread? Restaurants in America are out of control these days. I should have done what I saw a woman at The Union Square Cafe in NYC do last year: she asked for a take out bag and took all the bread home with her. Smart lady.

RL Grill ViewI also contemplated The Park Hyatt across the street and the meal that never was. And I wondered if anyone was making macarons while NoMi is shut. Because I could really go for some macarons right now.

The Verdict: Eh. RL Grill is good for a glass of wine. Tomato soup and toasted cheese is not a real test of a kitchen’s possibilities, but I’m not really dying to go back anytime soon. Mainly because I don’t own enough Burberry. Or Ralph Lauren.

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1 comment

Gino Williams January 23, 2011 - 8:17 pm

Several years ago, Ralph Lauren Grill was all the rage. It looked so very Lawrys/Grand Lux/Webber Grill but kicked up a notch with a hint of chi-chi ambience. And because of the name, I kept thinking clothing instead of food. If they don’t do grilled cheese right, sigh, I will simply have to live vicariously through your dining experience there.

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