There are restaurants, very fine ones, which take dishes recognizable to westerners and give them an Asian spin with new spices and ingredients. The new iteration of Logan Square’s fine dining hideaway Bonsoiree, under Top Chef-testant Beverly Kim and her husband Johnny Clark, is not one of those. Kim and Clark’s 12-course tasting menu (with a couple of extras thrown in) is unapologetically Asian in format, flavor and texture, and reminded us more of omakase-type meals we’ve had at places like Sankyu or the late, lamented Matsumoto than anything we’ve eaten in a downtown hot spot. But adventurous diners open to discovery and surprises will be amply rewarded with flavors and textures that may be unusual but are also beautifully refined— a paradoxically delicate yet hearty chawanmushi, a soul-filling bone soup with strands of jerky-like caramelized brisket, a duck breast and sausage dish that could be from a German restaurant save for the brightly pickled water chestnuts and nasturtiums providing unmistakably Asian contrast. While in partnership with the consistently intriguing food were Rachael Lowe’s beverage selections, which ranged from wine to sherry to beer— not to mention the room, which has been given a handsome, subtly Asian facelift. The menu will evolve with the seasons, but our man Huge Galdones has images of what will be served when it opens for regular service beginning Friday; check them out below.
Husband and wife team Beverly Kim and Johnny Clark at work in the kitchen.
Photo: Eugene (Huge) Galdones/? 2012 Galdones Photography LLC