“From the ashes of Think, comes (k)new,” proclaims the website of Omar Rodriguez’s new restaurant (2556 W. Fullerton Ave., 773 772 7721). The chef of the now-closed Think has flung open the doors on his new Logan Square digs, an organic-minded venture that (besides apparently having a bid in for “most ungoogleable restaurant name of 2009”) departs from Think’s French-inflected menu in favor of preparations that are squarely New American. Our interest is particularly piqued by Rodriguez’s knack for uncommon pairings — penne tossed with rosemary, goat cheese, almonds, and poached pear — as well as his very seasonally appropriate rack of venison with mashed sweet potatoes and a red wine-fig reduction. And yes, they’re BYOB. Read on for a sample of the opening menu.
Piquillo peppers, lump crabmeat, goat cheese, black truffles, white truffle oil, saffron butter emulsion. 18.
Potato nest, smoked salmon, horseradish crème fraîche, onions, capers, black caviar. 16.
Portobella mushrooms, walnut pesto, tomato, basil, fresh mozzarella, shaved paremsan. 11.
Belgian endive, lobster meat, feta cheese, spicy lobster cream, white truffle oil, chili oil, micros. 18.
Chef’s Creation of the Day. Market price.
Frisee, sugar sweetened almonds, black currants, manchego cheese, 12 year aged balsamic vinaigrette. 8.
Seasonal beets, goat cheese, roasted red peppers, baby arugula, toasted sesame vinaigrette. 10.
Baby arugula, goat cheese, toasted apple chips, pine nuts, mango vinaigrette. 8.
White asparagus, fresh tomato, onion, maytag bleu cheese, lemon vinaigrette. 10.
Penne pasta, fresh rosemary, goat cheese, toasted almonds, white wine poached pear, light cream sauce. 18.
Pappardelle pasta, spanish chorizo, clams, mussels, calamari, scallops, shrimp, white wine broth. 28.
Cavatappi pasta, lobster, jumbo shrimp, fresh tarragon, mint, basil, garlic, marscapone cheese, extra virgin olive oil. 29.
Venison rack, sweet mashed potato, red wine fig reduction, seasonal vegetable. 32
Buffalo filet peppercorn crusted, grapefruit infused Israeli couscous, red wine balsamic reduction. 28.
Rack of lamb, roasted purple potato, wilted arugula, caramelized orange peel mint beurre blanc. 28.
Fresh wild fish of the day. Market price.