A COMFORTABLE SIT-DOWN IN CONGENIAL SURROUNDINGS
Article provided by Crain's Chicago Business
FROM CRAIN'S "BEST NEW RESTAURANTS FOR BUSINESS 2018"
BY JOANNE TRESTRAIL
Across the street from Gibsons Italia, cozy TASTE 222 (222 N. Canal St. | 312-383-6620) takes an opposite tack, drawing diners who want a small, easygoing spot to take colleagues or clients, especially if they appreciate food that's more interesting than most lunch fare. The mastermind behind the place, which resembles a well-appointed living room (with an excellent bartender), is former McDonald's CEO Don Thompson. His venture-capital firm, Cleveland Avenue, and a related foundation are housed elsewhere in the three-story building. Taste 222 showcases their work mentoring and investing in food-business entrepreneurship, but the operation doesn't feel like a corporate experiment. Chef Judson Todd Allen's attention to detail and respect for fresh ingredients pay off with such touches as housemade root-vegetable chips ($4), terrifically tasty soups ($5/$8) and a fried-chicken sandwich ($14) so crunchy and luscious, you'll want another one tomorrow, but only if you can resist the meatloaf sliders ($12).