Pat Bruno reviews Clarendon Hills’ Soul this week, and after a quick glance up and down the article we actually tore ourselves away from the computer monitor to call the Sun-Times. We wanted to inquire about how many days transpire between when Pat Bruno submits his columns and when they actually run in the paper, but — lingering effects of Obamamania? — no one answered any of the numbers we dialed.
Here’s the thing: a recent review from Phil Vettel made much of pastry whiz Stephanie Prida, who has since moved on to one sixtyblue. And Bruno raves about the desserts — both in execution and in concept — without any indication of whether his visit occurred prior or post October 28, the termination of the Prida era at Soul.
Not mentioning Prida’s departure is something we could chalk up to journalistic laxity — maybe he filed the article two weeks ago and is of the disposition that there’s no looking back, or maybe he visited Soul two days ago and filed the article yesterday and didn’t feel the need to mention a former pastry chef whose creations he didn’t consume. But the review also, strangely, doesn’t mention executive chef Karen Nicholas, whose refined-Southern cuisine doesn’t so much influence the menu as define it. Instead, Bruno namechecks restaurateurs Howard Davis and Bill Kim as the masterminds behind his (incredibly delicious) meal. We guarantee that if Bruno had a spectacular meal at, say, L2O, he would be giving credit to Laurent Gras, not to Rich Melman. So we wonder what’s afoot with this snub of Nicholas’s formidable kitchen talents.
Journalistic idiosyncracies aside, Bruno’s a big fan of Soul — the only flaw are some overly dry potatoes in a potato-and-sorrel salad — and he’s a fan of the service, the atmosphere, and (blessed relief for the old guy) the volume. So that’s great for Soul, but we wish he’d given credit where credit’s due.
Sweet Soul [S-T]
[Photo: Blackened walleye at Soul, via LTHForum]
(An aside: Anyone know what’s happened to Thomas Witom and his suburban beat? Surely he can’t have eaten at every faux-French and redsauce Italian family-style that the Western Suburbs have to offer…)