Evanston >Food & Dining > Jacky's On Prairie
2545 Prairie Ave, Evanston, IL | Directions 6020142.063936 -87.700430
Organic disappointment – We were offered champagne to start us off, which was a nice touch for Saturday brunch. They brought us beignets as well, with honey and powdered sugar. As much as I love honey, these were not drizzled with honey, but drowned with honey to the point where the beignets were soggy.
The bread was greasy, but with no distinct flavor.
I ordered the Lemon Chicken Tajine, and was really disappointed. The portion was generous, but the chicken was far too salty and did not taste even remotely like lemon. The couscous was OK, moist and cooked well, but it could have used more almonds for texture. Normally I can finish anything, no matter how big the portion, but this chicken was truly just too salty, and the breast was very dry, although the darker thigh meat underneath was OK. I'm still thirsty as I write this, and it's been five hours. I'm thinking I should have stuck to something simple, like the Salmon Salad.
For dessert, I had the Profiteroles aux chocolate, which were mediocre - the pastry seemed a little stale.
Our waiter was a nice Asian man, but very awkward, stumbling over his words and apologizing every time he came to check on us. He's doing his job, no need to precede every statement with "I'm sorry to bother you..."
I had high expectations for Jacky's and really wanted to like the restaurant because I'm all for sustainable, organic and local food, but in all honestly, the food wasn't very good at all. Most people seem to love the place though, so I might have to give it another chance.
City atmosphere, closer to home – I LOVE this place. Like some of the other reviewers, I also liked Jacky's Bistro very much, but I thought that the quality of the food was going down a bit at the end. I continued to go there, though, because I loved the warm ambiance, the servers were (for the most part) excellent, and it was nice to have a place in the neighborhood to go for a good meal.
The new restaurant, Jacky's on Prairie, has taken the place to whole new levels, though. Rather than just being another French Bistro, (which are at this point a dime a dozen in Chicago) they have good, unique food that is from all over the world but that features great local farms that are well known in the area for being exceptional in quality. The wine list is long and unique (also mostly small producers). The $ all seem to be very much in line.
As someone who wants good quality food both in terms of the sourcing and the food preparation (but finds that hard to find in the United states, sometimes), I am so relieved to have a restaurant in my neighborhood that has-- yes-- excellent, excellent, excellent food and good service. They have also managed to keep the same great, warm vibe to be reminiscent of their namesake.
Three cheers from me! Thank you to the new Jacky's!
What a Great Place! – I've been to Jacky's on Prairie more than a dozen times with colleagues and friends, and we've have had a great experience each time. The food has been consistently high quality and delicious; the bouillabaisse is the best I have ever eaten (and I have had much in my years in France), and the service is friendly and efficient. While some previous reviewers seem to want the new restaurant to be a carbon copy of the old one (which went out-of-business) and others seem to expect it to make good on financial offers issued by that now defunct establishment, I am delighted to have a place that offers a warm ambiance and excellent fare right around the corner.
Once tor many! – Received a gift certificate from a friend who highly recommended Jacky's as they live in Evanston and have invited us there many times. Management refused to honor it as it was issued during previous ownership. Left me with the feeling of a guest looking for a handout. Not really a ranter though there are too many restaurants to spend money at while Jacky's management figures out the importance of customer satisfaction. Don't really care who the owner is or was. 2 reasonable (key word) people would have liked a reasonable ( in case you missed it, key word) solution that your manager was unprepared to provide and your server, well... there are too many restaurants. Bummer, because the food, selection, and service wasn't good enough to overcome the bitter taste it leaves in your mouth when management values policy over customers. I know my friend will be embarrassed, and I simply will not recommend your establishment. On the contrary.
Citysearch Editorial Review – A sophisticated crowd wines and dines on globally inspired cuisine rooted in French tradition at this warm, romantic bistro. Classic French advertising posters line the walls and flickering candles and white linens top the tables. The onion soup gratinee is a delightfully cheesy, salty precursor. Entree choices include fish, a smattering of pasta dishes and meaty options like duck confit and Portuguese- style lamb. A rich and bittersweet dark chocolate pallet shines as a shareable finale. If the ambiance doesn’t conjure up warm and fuzzy feelings, the seasonal cocktails and wine--from a cellar stocked with over 200 options--will.
Not the same place – We too were regular patrons of Jackies in the past. It did have a limted but dependable menu ( just like a French bistro), We were a little disapointed in the Steak Frite which the poive is now a thick creamy sauce nothing like the old one. The frites are just not the same. The beet salad was good, and the pheasent appetizer was good. But in general the food was just ok. The wine list is still good, but I hope they aren't just running through the inventory. The atmosphere has definitely changed and doesn't feel as neighborhood as it did before. It's a little sad.
Reminds me of Paris – Having lived in Paris, I am always in search of an authentic French meal and Jacky's hit the spot! I had steak frites (as it is my gauge of any French bistro's authenticity) and my wife had the duck. We topped off our meal with a bottle of Bordeaux from the extensive wine list. I found the food and ambiance to be in authentic Parisian style and the staff was both friendly and efficient. If you're looking for a little slice of Paris, check out Jacky's!
not the old Jacky's – As evanston residents, jacky's bistro was one of our favorite places to spend a long, wonderful dinner with friends. Unfortunately, it has been taken over by the owner of Blind Faith ( a vegetarian restaurant). The menue was linited and the descriptions did not match the food. I ordered a lobster appetizer - came as a "corn cake" (probably frozen corn - definitely not fresh) with 2 small pieces of lobster, and no taste. My friend ordered a salad that could have come out of a bag from the grocery store. As an entree, i ordered the steak and frites - a standby at the old Jacky's - it was inedible - grizzle and fat throughout. When we got the attention of the 20 something blonde hostess, she said that that was the way it was served and that it was not the "old Jacky's". i asked that it be replaced and she replied that she couldn't promise that it would be any better - but offered to serve me the NY cut - at a much higher price, of course.
We will not be returning. DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY - AS THE SNOTTY HOSTESS SAID - THIS IS NOT THE OLD RESTAURANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Best Southern France Taste – The environment, the service, and the food (can only critique the dessert) are all definitely great reasons to come back for more at Jacky?s Bistro restaurant.
upon arrival, I felt I was in the right place to satisfy my craving for a real classic southern French dish, ohm my great lord .. I had the Bouillabaisse, for a moment I forgot I was in the north shore, indeed I found the real home taste of southern France, with fashionable and romantic ambiance.
Jacky?s Bistro manages to go above and beyond with its commitments for occupying a small venue, it's cute yet sophisticated. It provided the best ambiance for an idyllic night.
The service was very pleasing our waitress was very attentive, not once did we have to ask for refill on our beverage, attentiveness seemed to be her forte, and personally, Michael and I like a clean table, hence we were somewhat surprised to see our waitress maintain a clean table for us after each round.
The dessert! This must have been the crescendo of our night. The banana Brioche Bread Pudding with Orange Mascarpone and crispy chocolate palet With Raspberry was amazing eyesight. The presentation of food was impeccable and just flowed. Michael, as soon as he saw it stated "wow, this looks too good to even eat." The bread pudding was by far our favorite, it was gone within a matter of moments. Warm, yet cooled by the ice cream and simply moist. The chocolate palet was pretty tasty and it didn't hurt that a beautifully sculptured strawberry was next to it. The Chocolate was chilled and soo very very rich!
All in all, a great experience with great dessert. Give it a try; I?m sure you won't be disappointed
Disappointing brunch – We had two birthdays in a busy, extended family and decided to celebrate at a brunch. We picked Jacky's based upon good reviews. Reserved several weeks in advance but all the good spots went to others.
We had 10 in a space for 7, near the music so we couldn't hear each other, Several people sent their food back because it was cold. We got the bill before we were offered coffee and then were not offered a second cup. The manager said the waiter was new, well then why weren't they surpervised?? They advertise valet parking. I found the sign but not the valet. I won't gp back!
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