In December 2012, the doors of Chicago’s Boarding House were thrown open to reveal four stylish storeys of fine wine and dining within, and the decadent after-dark haunt has been making headlines ever since. Melding raw materials and dramatic, contemporary design elements, proprietor and celebrity sommelier Alpana Singh’s glamorous, multi-zone space comprises a basement level, stone and wood cellar and cocktail lounge, first floor wine bar (notable for its 450 global pours and suspended display of 9,000 twinkling glasses), plus second and third level private and main-floor dining, where a smouldering colour palette, dramatic bay windows and impressive wine-bottle installation set the sultry scene.
Chef de Cuisine Bjorn Rasmussen has recently taken the helm, with the promise to add lighter, Med-inflected dishes to the rich offerings of his predecessor, including torchon of foie gras with fennel marmalade and warm white port grapes, grilled Berkshire pork belly, and chicken liver mousse - and that’s just for starters. The meat-fest continues with standout mains like 20 oz prime bone-in rib-eye, and New Zealand venison in a fiery Sichuan peppercorn sauce, or diners can take a chilled, seaside detour with a superior shellfish platter featuring king crab, East Coast oysters, shrimp, mussels, Maine lobster and scallop ceviche. A list of crowd-pleasing desserts rounds out the food offering, which means all that’s left for you to do is hop on Board!