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Winter is arriving in Chicago, but you can escape the winter blues and head over to Summer House Santa Monica in Lincoln Park and pretend you're vacationing in sunny California. We enjoyed the guacamole with housemade chips to start our meal and so did the majority of tables around us. They put the table of desserts near the door for a reason because honestly you can't walk out without trying at least one thing. The newest restaurant from Lettuce Entertain You is among the empire's most atmospherically successful.
The restraint shown with the burger allows a full appreciation of the thick, flame-kissed patty. Summer House Santa Monica is, unsurprisingly, designed to evoke a southern-California beach house.
In this way Summer House Santa Monica, which is designed to evoke a southern-California beach house, is among the more atmospherically successful units in the Lettuce Entertain You empire, whose greatest powers lie in the ability to conjure artifice. The good vibrations strengthen if you sit in the dining room, called the "Vitamin D Room" (for all the solar energy you'll be absorbing in the actual summer, presumably), and tackle the burger, a classic west-coast version dressed with lettuce, tomato, and Thousand Island dressing. Among the newer LEYE spots opened by the Melman brood, Summer House is one of the least annoying, a transplanted, off-focus facsimile of Santa Monica's M Street Kitchen, and a place that doesn't seem to have yet attracted the living dead who fill their River North joints.
It's helmed by chef Jeff Mahin, also responsible for the new Stella Barra Pizzeria next door (another LEYE LA transplant that I'll be writing about in the near future), and for Do-Rite Donuts on Randolph Street. I met another weirdly textured fish in a barbecue-glazed skate wing, sweet and appealingly charred but turning to mush in a pool of oversalted dashi broth alongside a tangle of equally saturated soba noodles.
Odd executions seem to plague many of the larger plates on the menu, and spoil what would otherwise be perfectly enjoyable dishes. One might have better luck with starters and salads, which are simple, minimally dressed, and feature an abundant variety of greenery. If the dessert menu's apple-cranberry crumble or triple fudge cake aren't persuasive, a good finishing option would be to visit the large bakery case that faces the front doors and select one of the enormous cookies, ranging from apple oatmeal to bacon chocolate chip. Summer House promises to source products locally as much as possible—though with the kind of dishes they're featuring now, that's pretty much impossible in this frozen town. How Rich Melman and his Lettuce Entertain You empire set the scene for Chicago's culinary revolution. Summer House Santa Monica is a California-influenced, American restaurant and will dish out an ever-changing menu using locally-sourced produce and ingredients whenever possible. California-influenced, American menu spotlighting seasonal, locally-sourced produce & ingredients.
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If for no other reason than the fact that it completely transports guests to a sunny fantasyland, Summer House Santa Monica should be at the top of your dining list this winter.
The thing about the pancakes at Summer House is they are so light you'd think they were diet-friendly. Brunch at Summer House is not complete without one of their exemplary housemade English muffins ($2.95).
Now that that damn Punxsutawney Phil has condemned us all to several more weeks of frigid hell, it's more important than ever to find an escape.
The Annenberg Community Beach House in Santa Monica is the first city-run beach house of its kind on the California coast, and this newly renovated LEED facility is officially one of the sweetest hotspots to hold your summer beach bash. Implications - Consumers are looking to inject an element of luxury into all aspects of their lives.

With whitewashed woods, wicker chairs and a giant skylight you'll forget all about the snow and freezing temperature outside. The guacamole was prepared with fresh ingredients (which always makes a huge difference) and the jalapeno salt added the perfect kick. I'm obsessed with their apple oatmeal cookie for Fall, but the chocolate chip cookie with sea salt is amazing.
I'm usually repulsed by this sort of burger, its most popular and revolting form pushed by the In-N-Out Burger chain: a slippery, sloppy mess of patties squirting from between smooshed buns on dressing-slicked lettuce launch pads.
Mahin and his doughnut partner, Francis Brennan, haven't duplicated the menu of the Santa Monica template—how could they in this climate? The trio of house-made pastas includes delicate ricotta ravioli buried under a mudslide of rich arugula pesto that's brightened considerably by Meyer lemon. Basic, familiar vegetable dishes like roasted beets with goat cheese sprinkled with Espelette pepper, or nuggets of lightly roasted cauliflower dressed with a jalapeño pesto, would combine well with a ziggurat of sweet, fall-off-the-bone, Chinese-style ribs and a knob of the gooey California burrata for a decent dinner on their own.
For a mere $7.95 a white, Summer House-branded beach ball will be brought to you by one of the many well-scrubbed, recently postpubescent servers in sneakers and denim (and chambray or gingham), who appear more than game to bat it around for a bit. Barring those, there's a handful of light, breezy cocktails—a few built on sparkling or fortified wines.
But there's a chance it might be worth it to see what happens when the weather turns and that roof opens up, and watermelon is actually in season. In addition to simply prepared proteins and a large selection of market vegetables, Summer House Santa Monica also boasts Chef Jeff Mahin’s signature artisanal bread program, an extensive wine list, fresh-squeezed juices and a wide array of pastry and sweets. Inside Summer House, guests find a laid-back, friendly vibe with an environment reminiscent of the Golden State, complete with beach house-inspired decor. Our doors are open at 8:00am every Saturday and Sunday, serving dishes like the Santa Monica Egg White Omelette with shaved turkey breast and tomato-avocado salsa, the Sunrise Burrito, our Very Nice Caramelized French Toast, and more. Share our Spicy Calamari or Ahi Tuna Tostadas, and start the weekend off with a cocktail or glass of California wine. The whitewashed, beachy-chic California import beats diners over the head with SoCal verve, from the decor to the food, and what a welcome beating it is.
At least that's what I tell myself, imagining bikini-clad beach-goers chowing down on egg-stuffed tortillas.
As airy as they may be, these things are decadent, especially when I wind up eating an entire tin of lemon curd to accompany it. Larger and fluffier than most English muffins, these doughy discs are what breakfast breads should aspire to. The warming confines of Summer House Santa Monica are just the trick, especially when enriched with breakfast burritos and lemony pancakes.
An avid lover of brunch, dachshunds, and Lana Del Rey, his passions include traveling, haunted things, desserts, and repeatedly auditioning for The Amazing Race. Everyday products that feature a prestigious aspect are appealing to those who want a bit of exclusivity injected into their everyday tasks. Aside from the atmosphere the food is also incredible (as part of the Lettuce Entertain You group) with a menu that focuses on locally-sourced produce and ingredients. Since I'm a huge quinoa lover I ordered the shaved vegetable salad with petite romaine, iceberg, shaved vegetables, red quinoa, ricotta salata, sunflower seeds and italian vinaigrette.
But they have presented a far-ranging selection of vegetable dishes, salads, seafood, steaks, pasta, and sandwiches—the familiar something-to-answer-every-whim approach that doesn't speak much to any sort of Californian pedigree, apart from a few regional dishes like the burger and, say, the "surfer-style" fish tacos. A simple grilled skirt steak hasn't a hint of seasoning but it does have an oddly rubbery texture, though the accompanying fries (which join the burger too) are dependably crispy and thoroughly scarfable.
The chef-driven menu highlights simple, handcrafted dishes prepared with local and seasonally inspired ingredients, many of which are prepared on a wood fire grill. Because it's such a thrill to sit in lifeguard chairs and pretend you're a cast member on Baywatch while tucking into Summer House's vibrant American fare and pretending snow only exists in our nightmares.

Summer House offers a couple breakfast burrito options, and unsurprisingly the better of the two is the one that doesn't include tofu chorizo. The lemon-cottage cheese pancakes ($8.95) are a refreshing departure from the flapjack norm, enlivened with citrus and tenderized with cottage cheese. They're buttery without being too heavy, and when spread with preserves (apricot for mine) and soft butter, they become the sleeper hit of the brunch menu. Companies trying to increase their value on the market could focus on this when coming out with new items. Other options include brown butter rice krispy treats, chocolate chip cookies with bacon, and apple cinnamon crumble bars.
It's restrained with the dressing and toppings, which allows for full appreciation of the thick, flame-kissed patty, spurting with juice.
The latter dish is essentially a slab of mahimahi, grilled to an oddly plasticized texture, that you're meant to break up and use to build your own tacos on corn tortillas, along with some guacamole and corn salsa. The ever-changing menu highlights more than 12 varieties of white and red artisan pizzas all topped with house-made ingredients.
Woods - Lincolnwood, ILM Street Kitchen - Santa Monica, CAMaggiano's Little Italy - Chicago, ILMaggiano's Little Italy - Milwaukee, WIMaggiano's Little Italy - Naperville, ILMaggiano's Little Italy - Oak Brook, ILMaggiano's Little Italy - Schaumburg, ILMaggiano's Little Italy - Skokie, ILMity Nice Bar & Grill - Chicago, ILMon Ami Gabi - Bethesda, MDMon Ami Gabi - Chicago, ILMon Ami Gabi - Las Vegas, NVMon Ami Gabi - Oak Brook, ILMon Ami Gabi - Reston, VANacional 27 - Chicago, ILNaoki - Chicago, ILOsteria Via Stato - Chicago, ILOyster Bah - Chicago, ILPetterino's - Chicago, ILPizzeria Via Stato - Chicago, ILR.J.
The best time to embrace these sentiments is at weekend brunch, a new addition to the Summer House portfolio. The sunrise burrito ($10.95) is a straightforward mix of scrambled eggs, spinach, cheddar, avocado, lettuce, and pico de gallo, but in this wintry black hole we call Chicago, even the most standard of breakfast burritos is an oral vacation. You can't really taste much of the cheese, which is a bummer for cottage cheese-lovers such as myself, but it certainly makes a difference texture-wise, with just a spritz of tanginess.
The weirdest thing about this dish isn't its swollen price ($22.95), but the two large slices of out-of-season watermelon dominating the plate. A bakery counter, shared with Stella Barra, offers a selection of fresh-baked breakfast pastries, muffins and Mahin’s famous cookie selection. Another centerpiece of the menu is the farm fresh vegetables and a selection of market-driven small plates, salads and sandwiches.
Grunts - Chicago, ILRamen-san - Chicago, ILReel Club - Oak Brook, ILRPM Italian - Chicago, ILRPM Steak - Chicago, ILSaranello's - Wheeling, ILShaw's Crab House - Chicago, ILShaw's Crab House - Schaumburg, ILStella Barra - Chicago, ILStella Barra - Hollywood, CAStella Barra - North Bethesda, MDSummer House Santa Monica - Chicago, ILSummer House Santa Monica - North Bethesda, MDThree Dots and a Dash - Chicago, ILTokio Pub - Schaumburg, ILTru - Chicago, ILTucci Benucch - Bloomington, MNTwin City Grill - Bloomington, MNWildfire - Chicago, ILWildfire - Eden Prairie, MNWildfire - Glenview, ILWildfire - Lincolnshire, ILWildfire - Oak Brook, ILWildfire - Schaumburg, ILWildfire - Tysons, VA1-888-LETTUCE(1-888+538-8823)Please note that some of our restaurants do not accept reservations.
True to form, the Lettuce Entertain You spot puts a sunny stamp on dishes that are sure to transport you to the toasty shores of Santa Monica. In this case, the wheaty flavor of the tortilla provides a pleasant nutty contrast to the rich medley of egg, cheese, and avocado, all of which comes to life when splashed with some of the adjoining smoky salsa. Summer House Santa Monica is open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch on Saturday and Sunday. The rustic dining room features exposed brick with modern industrial touches, and a large patio along the front of the restaurant offers al fresco dining.Between the two concepts is a bakery counter offering a selection of fresh-baked breakfast pastries, muffins and Mahin’s famous cookies. I distinctly remember my lemon curd lesson in culinary school, making a whopping batch of it, and taking it home to eat by the spoonful. Locally roasted artisan coffee will also be served in both restaurants.The restaurants are slated to open later this month and in the meantime, Chef Mahin shared his recipe for his One-Pot Roast Chicken with Lentils and Kale, a simple dish inspired by Summer House Santa Monica that you can make at home.
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Author: admin | 24.02.2014 | Category: Simple Shed Plans

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