Chicago >Restaurants >
French >Le Lan Restaurant
749 N Clark St, Chicago, IL | Directions 6061041.896260 -87.631068
Friday From 05:00 PM To 10:00 PM Sunday From 05:30 PM To 10:30 PM Monday To Thursday From 05:30 PM To 09:30 PM
Neighborhoods: Near North Side, Central
Competition for Le Colonial – There really aren't many restaurants that do the French Asian cuisine. There's Viet places, but I mean the more elegant French Asian fusion, for which Le Colonial has a fine reputation. Here's what Le Colonial doesn't have: a chef named Chad Starling. He's really doing some fine things in Le Lan's kitchen. I can't wait to go back for more. I went on a Friday night, somewhat concerned that I was underdressed and that the place would be too crowded. It was nice-but-casual, and not too crowded -- just right. I was alone, so I sat at the bar. The house Riesling is delicious. Chef Chad sent out an amuse bouche, which was a melt-in-your-mouth piece of sashimi (I think it was yellowtail) with something frizzy on it, like radish shaving, and a flavored oil, I think. Don't know what the hell it was, but it sure amused my bouche. The entrees looked great, but I was in the mood for appetizers. I started with the Young Thai coconut soup, which was one of the best soups I have ever tasted. I cook a little myself, and I do soups, and this one made me envious. I also sampled some duck dumplings, which I wanted more of. I don't mean the order was small; I mean I wanted seconds. The homemade spring rolls are light for fried food, and the filling once again reflected the chef's knack for marrying flavors. I can't wait to have some of these entrees and will review again when I do. The night I went, the bartender was also waiting tables, and the wait staff sometimes tended their own drinks. They just do it this way. Maybe it fosters helpfulness on the part of the staff, but I don't care for it. It makes the place look harried and short-staffed, even though it's not.
Amazing! – I had an amazing time at Le Lan. Everything that needed to go right that night went right. From the amazingly courteous staff (hostess, waiters, sommelier) to the delicious food (we had quail foie gras (sp???) and the venison and it was delicious). I had arranged for the desert before hand and they were very receptive and helpful in assisting me with the surprise. I highly recommend this place for anyone wishing to have a friendly and romantic experience.
Awful Food – I was excited to try Le Lan for the first day the other night, unfortunately the food was terrible. My soup had far too much salt and tasted as though someone had made some serious mistakes measuring. Even worse, my fish entree was severely undercooked and I had to send it back immediately. Later that night confirmation came in the form of severe food po isoning (won't get in the specifics here but let's just say it wasn't pretty). All in all I would say this was not a good dining experience: the staff was ambivalent, prices were super high and the food was literally sickening.
Exceptional service slightly overshadows the food – Wow, talk about A+ service! My husband and I went there for our 4th Anniversary and were blown away by the attentive and thoughful service. Our menus were personalized and we were given a number of complimentary tastings.
For an appetizer, we ordered sashimi over an avocado puree complemented by bl**d oranges and wakame. I tried my best not to lick the plate. For an entree, my husband had the NY Strip Steak, drizzled with curry butter or something. Don't quote me on that. It was served with sauteed greens and a red coconut rice of sorts. Honestly, my husband wasn't very excited about the steak - gave it a so-so review:( He really, really wanted to like it. But, he loved everything else.
I, on the other hand, had the bouillabaise which consisted of 10 different types of seafood. The broth was very tasty and light. I enjoyed it. I also enjoyed eating all of my husbands sides. Oh, and I had the coconut polenta cakes over habanero peppers. That was pretty tasty as well. It would have been better if I had some type of sauce drizzled over it.
And for dessert, we had gingerbread with spiced pear puree and ice cream and probably a few more goodies that I can't remember. The flavor was rich, but the bread was too dense for my taste. I still ate it all. They did give us an anniversary Creme Brulee - which was divine.
Overall, I loved the service. I thought the value was great because of all of the extras. Otherwise, it may have been just slightly overpriced - just a tad. And I can't guarantee if you'll get all the extras. The food was good for the most part. I didn't want to stop eating:)
Nothing great esp if you are vegetarian – We went to Le Lan to celebrate our anniversary, and I had called a month in advance for reservations, letting them know we were celebrating. I also asked about veg food options before making a reservation and they assured me that they did vegetarian all the time and had plenty of options. When we arrived, we had to wait 15 minutes for our table. Then they gave us a table in the corner (they have a cool round table on one end, that of course, they didnt give to us). Although the food was good, I was disappointed that they actually only have a couple dishes that were veg, and only 1 entree option. So although the decor and atmosphere was nice, I would not recommend this place esp if you are vegetarian. There are plenty of other options in Chicago with better service and great food.
Great food and excellent service! – Although this restaurant has a romantic ambience, it is nice, but not too fancy. The food is great (mahi mahi was excellent) and the martini's are unique. The waitstaff made sure that we were enjoying our meal, and the chef even came out to season our soups. Overall, great ambience for a special dinner, great food, and excellent service. The prix fix menu is a good deal during the weekdays without being too expensive. Definitely a place to try!!
Very Special! – My husband and I went to Le Lan for our anniversary and we received the most top notch customer service we have had from a downtown restaurant in a long time . We were greeted with anniversary well wishes from the host to the coat checker, the waiters as well as the bus boys . We were seated right away . Our dinning experience began with 2 glasses of complimentary champagne . The heading on our menus was Happy Anniversary , which was just a lovely surprise. They informed us they do special headings on the menu depending on the occasion you are celebrating. We started with the delicious Young Thai Coconut Soup and the Mushroom Dumplings . For dinner we had the Sizzling Short Ribs and the Lobster special . Both dishes were flavorful and cooked to perfection . We finished our meal with the Chocolate Moelleux with star anise caramel and the Ice cream collection which were decadent with exceptional flavor. We had a truly romantic and satisfying anniversary celebration thanks to the staff and chef at Le Lan .
Upscale French-Vietnamese restaurant in River North balances both cuisines in rich sauces, balanced spices, fresh seafood and meats. – In Short
A large moon-shaped window marks this Asian-inspired restaurant on Clark Street, which is named appropriately after an orchid. Inside, diners find themselves a romantic space complemented by tables topped with the bespoke flower, recessed lighting and dragon-themed artwork. The East-dabbles-with-West menu reflects the savory and sweet nuances of both palates in the forms of rich spices and subtle sauces. Notables include pork belly and pink shrimp spring rolls with hot mustard and green papaya salad or sake-glazed cobia with soba noodles, bok choy and miso broth paired perfectly with a selection from a well-rounded, eclectic wine list.
Change – FYI, they've changed chefs and the menu here. That is undoubtedly the reason for the diversity in reviews.
Good but unmemorable, won't be back – I would rate this place very average and am surprised by the high ratings from other people. When I tell friends I work with that I felt this place was overrated I get mixed reviews, some swear by, some agree with me.
I was impressed at first by the design of the restaurant; it was very comfortable and not too stuffy. I found the food to be very average thru the entire meal (minus desert). Unmemorable is the word I'd use. The waiter also takes a lot of time to tell you every ingredient used in the meal... some people may like this but I find it annoying.
Overall I'm glad I checked it out but will not plan on going back.
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