Located in the heart of downtown Chicago’s most famous theater venues, Petterino’s Restaurant simply exudes classic Windy City nightlife. It’s an upscale steakhouse and seafood restaurant within blocks of several of the city’s biggest theaters, from the Cadillac Palace, to the Chicago, to the Gene Siskel Film Center. The restaurant has a stage of its own, where cabaret singers come on weeknights and many a date pass through. Petterino’s is the perfect place to do fine dining right in this city, no matter the cause.
The restaurant tops the menu with its surf and turf, and the steak is certainly top-notch. The fillet mignon is tender and juicy, it’s seasoned perfectly and it’s very tasty, served alongside a grilled tomato and some other garnishes. The steak diane is even better, coming with blackened mushrooms and in a very savory sauce, gravy-like and good to dip just about anything. The ingredients are used brilliantly, though my one complaint is that in trying two steaks, both were significantly overcooked. One was ordered medium rare and came medium well. The other was ordered medium well and came well done. Unless you’re terribly picky I don’t think it will substantially affect your experience.
The sides are outstanding. The appetizer bread is even good; it’s rich and buttery, and there’s a raisin bread to go along as well if you like that. The grilled vegetables are excellent, though a little heavy on the butter they are cooked extremely well. All told, the ingredients are expertly handled, though they could stand a bit less grease.
The cocktail menu deserves some recognition, too, as Petterino’s has some very tasty items on its menu. Among them are the Windy City Martini, which is Svedka Vodka with a splash of olive juice and two blue cheese stuffed olives. It’s extremely savory and very dry. Also on the menu that I would suggest is the blueberry lemontini, which is basically just vodka and lemonade with a sugary rim and fresh blueberries. Neatly done.
The service is unfortunately slow, which is a shame for a place branding itself as the kind you’d go to before a show. They seem to be perpetually undermanned and it takes awhile to get your order in, and awhile to get service back to the table for one reason or another. The people are very nice and I have no complaints at all about the tone of the service, it’s just slow. If you’re heading in before a show, give yourself plenty of time and expect it to take a little longer here. The ambiance isn’t very rushed, anyway.
In spite of this, I would say my experience here has been overall good. I would absolutely come back for a classy dinner night.
- Go for the steaks or the seafood, definitely the best item I tried was the steak diane.
- Also, if you get the chance, sample the cocktails.
- You’ll enjoy your experience here the most if you’re not rushing to get somewhere else. Service is relaxed.