Neighborhood: Humboldt Park
Vegetarian Options Rating: ★★★
Pescatarian Options Rating: ★★★★★
Affordability: ★★★ 1/2
Food Quality: ★★★★
Overall Rating: ★★★★
I am very happy that there is a restaurant/cafe that appreciates educators since they are under-appreciated in our society. Chicago Teacher’s Lounge and Eatery has a very relaxed, unpretentious vibe making it feel like a neighborhood hang-out. Our server was very kind, genuine, and helpful. I would say the cuisine was “New-American” style and quite tasty. They had a decent cocktail and wine list but it was a school night so I wasn’t drinking. Their water has a refreshing lemon flavor to it making me like this place even more! Little details like these definitely elevate the dining experience. They also had cheaper sandwich options (around $13) if you aren’t looking to splurge but also more expensive entrees if you are looking to splurge (around $20).
They had a fair amount of vegetarian and pescatarian options. My friend (who is also an educator) and I started out with an order of the truffle parmesan fries. They were drizzled with a garlic aioli and the truffle flavor was delicious. I would have liked if there was freshly grated parmesan rather than the parmesan powder on there, but it was still wonderful and I couldn’t stop eating it.
For our entrees we ordered the roasted salmon and the cheese ravioli. The roasted salmon was out of this world! The salmon was made to perfection and served with a delicate balsamic reduction over decadent truffle mashed potatoes. The truffle mashed potatoes were heavenly and I still didn’t have enough truffle that night. The roasted vegetables were crispy and went very well with the balsamic reduction. I loved the crunchy texture of the broccoli and cauliflower.
The cheese ravioli was also great in the basil broth. I think this dish could have have been more flavorful though. It had a delicate, light flavor and the basil was not very strong or potent. It had more of a buttery sauce. The ravioli had a wonderful texture and was stuffed with ricotta. It was served with sweet tomatoes, asparagus, and shaved parmesan making it feel like a balanced dish. I wanted to try dessert because they had some excellent choices but alas it was a school night so wasn’t feeling super indulgent.
Overall, this was a wonderful experience and I plan on coming here for their Taco Tuesday! For a place that has only been open for a couple of months, I was impressed with how they had everything under control.