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View Map619 W. Randolph St., Chicago
Tel: (312) 715-0708
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Editorial Review of Blackbird

If Paul Kahan was a musician, he'd be a critic's indie darling. Along with Charlie Trotter and Rick Bayless, Paul Kahan and Blackbird paved the way for independent restaurateurs and played a role in defining Chicago's current fine dining scene. Kahan makes a career of flying below the radar, all the while turning out some of Chicago's finest seasonal cuisine.

And like that indie band, Kahan makes sure he says something with his art. He pays attention to the politics of the plate, using organic products, developing relationships with independent purveyors and always respecting seasonality.

Blackbird's interior is all clean lines, mahogany chairs, coffee-color woods and white walls. Designed by Thomas Schlesser almost ten years ago, the classic modern space manages to look trendier than restaurants that just opened yesterday.

The space is no mere window dressing. Kahan, who is known for his clean pure flavors, cites Schlesser as an influence in developing his cooking style. While the menu constantly changes, dishes like heirloom tomato with watermelon salad or California sturgeon with English peas and spring onions highlight his pursuit of purity. Kahan's father owned a deli, and the son learned well: The charcuterie plate and pork belly dishes are the best in the city. Appetizers range from $10-$16 and entree prices from $25-$33.

Average cost: $21-$30

Centerstage Reviewer: Michael Nagrant

User Reviews

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lunch: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday-Friday; dinner: 5:30-10:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 5:30-11:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday

Directions to Blackbird

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