On my final day in Chicago I only had a few hours in the morning to enjoy the city and the company of my Chicago hostess before I needed to head to O'Hare for a 1:15pm flight. Since I didn't have a ton of time, we wanted to minimize the amount of travel time to any potential brunch destination. We decided to keep it local. And by local, I mean, directly across the street.
My friend lives in the neighborhood of Chicago called River North. Right across the street from her apartment building is a hotel called the Hotel Felix and it has a beautiful French restaurant on the ground floor. Though it's steps from her abode, she had never tried it before (I totally know how that goes, there is a donut shop at that end of my street that I've never set foot in despite rave reviews from neighbors).
When we arrived, we were thrilled to see they were running some type of mimosa special.
The host walked us through the restaurant and out onto the outdoor patio.
Even more exciting than the mimosa special was the fact that Troquet allows dogs on their patio. We were able to bring my friend's pooch, Hudson, which just made the experience one million times better.
Our waitress was very friendly and informed us that the special is bottomless mimosas and any entree on the brunch menu for $25 dollars per person. We were sold.
Our mimosa glasses arrived quite full alongside a full carafe. The OJ in the drink tasted more like Orangina (no complaints here). Because it had no pulp it tasted very smooth.
As we looked over the food menu we were having a tough time deciding. Everything sounded so delicious.
My friend went with the Troquet omelette which was packed with roasted mushrooms, tomato, spinach, Camembert and topped with Bearnaise.
It came with breakfast potatoes and a side of toast.
After several bites I asked for her opinion. She said, "The Camembert cheese inside makes it super creamy. The Bearnaise sauce on top is very indulgent. The potatoes were good, but not as good as your fries." More on my fries in a minute.
For my dish I chose something called the Croque Vegeterien which is a veggie twist on Croque Madame or Croque Monsieur. It came stuffed with spinach, caramelized onion, Camembert, Swiss and Dijon mustard between two pieces of multigrain toast.
This dish was incredible. The cheese on top tasted like the cheese that gets melted over French onion soup. The Camembert inside melted perfectly and bound everything together. The spinach and caramelized onions were a superb combination. Half way through the dish I was already thinking about when I could come back and order it again.
My Croque Vegeterien came with a side of parmesan truffle fries. I knew this was probably not the best thing to eat before getting on a plane and being in small quarters with other people (truffle smells very strong, no matter how much gum you chew) but I didn't care.
The fries were thinly cut, expertly crisped and each and every fry was coated in parmesan.
In addition to the delicious food, Troquet also played fun music. While we were dining we heard several Motown hits including My Girl, Stop in the Name of Love, Heard it through the Grapevine and Say a Little Prayer.
When our check arrived, our waitress let us know we received 15% off as part of their neighbor discount. If you live in River North, you're eligible!
Brunch at Troquet was the perfect last stop for my Chicago adventure. Even if I did leave a little drunk . . .
A huge thank you to my hostess who planned the most incredible weekend for a first time visitor.