Mmm Mmm Monday: RL

I have a confession to make. When I heard we had reservations at RL I wasn't all that excited. My thinking was, "With all the fantastic restaurants in Chicago, we're going to eat in a joint attached to a clothing store?" To say I had low expectations of the food would be an understatement.

RL cappuccino

I haven't been so happy to be dead wrong in a very long time. I guess that just shows I'm still learning about Chicago AND its culinary scene.

Our meal was a delightful surprise. My main course, the Seafood Pappardelle was decadent. It was virtually overflowing with Maine lobster. Meanwhile, two jumbo scallops worked hard to steal the show. But the entire dish was doused in a rich truffle cream sauce {complete with shaved black truffles} that tempted me to lick the plate. Had we not been in such a swanky establishment I might have seriously considered it.

The decor of the restaurant was exactly what one might expect from Ralph Lauren. Rich leather, dark wood, and white table clothes contributed to the very "clubby" feel. An abundance of eclectic art and photography covered every inch of wall space in the intimate dining room. Though there isn't much square footage in RL they take advantage of what they have expertly.

Our waiter, Christopher, was attentive and knowledgeable and had a fantastic sense of humor. He was not only a spectacular server, he kept us laughing and took the edge off what could have easily been a very buttoned-up atmosphere.

Seafood Pappardelle Untitled

The group had several occasions to celebrate that evening and he took note when we mentioned them all. He even remembered them, in chocolate sauce and candles, on our desserts.

Ladies Who Supper

I came away from our meal at RL feeling much like I do about Lauren's clothing line. The top notch materials were woven together expertly and presented with a comfortable, upscale, stylish flair - and they had a price tag that reflected their quality. Everyone at the table raved about their starters, entrees and desserts. This fantastic meal kicked off a long weekend with my Mother-in-law and a few of her girlfriends {see the ladies above} and won't soon be forgotten.

When was the last time you were happily surprised by restaurant?