Hours: Afternoon, Dinner: Sunday, Wednesday-Saturday
Closed: Monday, Tuesday
Sophisticated French fare flawlessly executed in a historic Victorian setting.
OK, so it's far away from just about everything except the Joliet penitentiary. But this long-standing upscale Franco-American restaurant, owned by former schoolteachers Robert Burcenski (the chef) and Tom Alves (the maitre d'), is as luxurious and delicious as they come. The handsomely restored Victorian two-flat sits discreetly on the main drag of historic downtown Lockport -- you have to sneak down a flight of stairs to access the entryway. The tin ceiling, tiled floor, and wainscoted and mirrored walls give an old-style charm to the small dining room (it seats just 36). The menu is surprisingly reasonable for such refined cuisine -- a three-course option is $45, four courses are $55, and five are $65, but close to one-third of the dishes have additional charges ranging from $4 for a prawn appetizer to $16 for a poached lobster entree with chanterelle mushrooms and a gruyere flan. Most dishes are artfully constructed, layered with flavors and velvety sauces, but some fall short. A woodland mushroom risotto, for example, was chock full of exquisite mushroom morsels and bathed in a lemon beurre blanc, but needed an expert dose of salt and a finishing touch of fresh herbs (or something) to enhance its flavor. Desserts, which must be ordered at the same time as entrees, are equally artistic, and pack a rich punch. The signature chocolate tower should satisfy the most demanding chocolate lover. Service is very professional and the sommelier offers educated wine suggestions and information. Reservations are best made weeks in advance for a weekend table.
Payment Type: MasterCard, Visa