The Slow and Savory Review
Brandy decided to prove this point to her dear friend Bailey Blue by taking her along to Siena Tavern in River North for brunch. Siena Tavern is one of several current ventures in Chicago headed by Top Chef alum Fabio Viviani, this one focusing on rustic Italian fare with a twist of urban Chicago sass. Opened in the spring of 2013, Siena Tavern has been steadily growing a huge fan base with lighter plates like wood fired flatbread pizzas and home made gelato along side more elaborate entrees and house made pastas, making this place not only perfect for a fancy meal, but also more casual night out. "They've got everything there for all different budgets," Brandy told Bailey, "So let's put my theory about price versus value to the test."
The inside of Siena Tavern was bright and inviting with its warm woods and gold tones, making the place feel luxurious, but comfortable. The dining area was open and airy with plenty of space to move around. At the east side of the restaurant was a gorgeous, sparkling bar area, while against the south wall a couple of chefs prepared fresh plates in full view of the diners, their backs to a beautiful wood fire oven.
Brandy and Bailey started right off with a couple of drinks. Bailey opted for her usual Bloody Mary, which came nicely dressed with plenty of top quality meats, cheeses, and pickled veggies on a skewer. Bailey thought the Bloody was just spicy enough without being too overwhelming and that it had a nice freshness to go along with a thinner consistency and some nice peppery bite. "The Bloody Mary is a pretty crazy thing when you think about it," Bailey mused, "Take out the alcohol and it would practically be a health drink!" Brandy went for one of the signature cocktails, labeled simply the No. 10 (all the signature cocktails at Siena Tavern had numbers instead of names), which was a bit of a play on an Old Fashioned with a touch of apricot. Brandy liked that the drink was strong, but not too abrasive, and had a nice little bit of sweetness to it.
Brandy and Bailey could not have been more pleased with their brunch at Siena Tavern. From the impeccable service to the warm and friendly atmosphere, this was a restaurant that understood not only the importance of the best ingredients, but how to present them in the most beautiful, unpretentious, and appetizing way possible. "Are some of the prices a little higher than your average brunch? Perhaps," Brandy said, "But in the case of something like a lobster hash with truffle hollandaise, you are certainly getting what you pay for. No more, no less, and as long as the price matches the value of the dish, I don't mind a larger bill. But I would venture to say that, all things considered, I'd happily pay almost anything to experience that meal again." Bailey, who was struggling to shove the last bite of Monkey Bread into her mouth, simply nodded in agreement.
The writers of this blog were invited to dine at this restaurant at no charge in exchange for an honest review.
The Short and Sweet Review