Midwest Living Review
While North Pond Restaurant's setting in leafy Lincoln Park boasts dramatic skyline views and museum-quality Arts and Crafts decor, the intimate, pond-side restaurant is best known nationally for chef Bruce Sherman's seasonal cooking. His French-American cuisine has been a perennial fine-dining favorite since 1999. Three-course Sunday brunch ($33), tasting menus ($85) and a la carte choices showcase the season's bounty. In summer, expect Midwest-grown apricots, peaches and French heirloom melon on the plate with sockeye salmon or succulent duck ($39). Enjoy a creative dessert like banana cremeux and coconut cake with toasted coconut flake-dusted dollops of Jamaican pineapple sorbet. Service is stellar. Although the soft-spoken chef calls himself merely a cook, Sherman is a five-time James Beard Award nominee, a "Food and Wine" magazine Best New Chef in 2003 and community activist. His restaurant donates to Chicago Park District conservation projects, women's shelters and sustainable cuisine initiatives. Chef Sherman practiced farm-to-table cooking long before it became fashionable. His approach is born from many international experiences. He works with up to 50 Midwest sustainable farmers supplying his restaurant housed in a restored 1912 Chicago Park District building that was once a warming hut for ice skaters on the pond.