If you're heading out to the western suburb of Burr Ridge, this probably means you're on your way to its massive shopping center (what else other than shopping would you be doing in the suburbs?). Look past the Eddie Bauer and the Ann Taylor, and you'll come across an upscale cafe by the name of Topaz, a classy restaurant of contemporary American cuisine from the former chef of Boka
that is appropriately nestled at the end of the shopping strip and an enticing way to complement the $120 you just blew at Banana Republic.
With most of the entrees in the $20-plus range, be prepared to drop a couple of pounds on your wallet, unless you want to just stick to appetizers – pan-roasted frog legs ($14) or smoked sable fish carpaccio ($12) are quirky options for cheap meals. Traditional upscale fare rules the entrée list, like 10-oz. Filet mignon ($34), house-made fettuccine ($18), and Atlantic wild salmon ($24). But hey, classy food can get a little wild too, like filet of Mediterranean scorpion fish, accompanied with calamari and berries.
The place includes a large covered patio for lounging during a lovely, hopefully mosquito-free evening, featuring a large bar area, couches for relaxing and hanging plants to lighten the space. Of course, Topaz – whose interior features wood-paneled pillars and golden curtains – is the kinda place you'd like to have a glass or two of wine in, and the restaurant obliges with a pretty extensive list of 90-plus bottles, so that you can mellow out after a day of intense gouging.
Centerstage Reviewer: Andy Seifert