Reverie means to enter a pleasant daydream; and dream about the food you will, after a meal at the newly opened Reverie in River North. The menu at Reverie reads like a dream, a jumble of asian and comfort food favorites, like sushi and sashimi and mac and cheese, and the drink menu is one to match this lofty name with drinks like "dream of genie" and "diviners sage". When I checked out this new spot, the drink menu was not quite ready to share, but the food was so we indulged in several tasting-style plates to take it all in.
Our server recommended the "Great White Sashimi" as a starter, and we also chose the tempura asparagus with tamari and poached egg. The "Great White Sashimi" is an escolar dish, dressed up with fried shallots and indulgence oil - essentially truffle and other goodies. While the taste of this was too truffle-forward for me, the dish was balanced and rich like a red meat dish, and not as typical for a fish dish. I would have preferred trying the halibut and jalapeno sashimi, in retrospect. The tempura asparagus comes with a side of tamari and poached egg, which mixed up into a delicious and decadant sauce. I preferred the asparagus alone, as they were perfectly seasoned and pretty perfect as they were.
Craving a lighter meal, we then moved on to other bites, like the carrot tartare, kale salad, spinach and mushroom salad, the "does this look rice on me" roll and the havarti mac and cheese. The carrot tartare was a lovely display of purred carrots, crunchy garbanzo beans, cumin spice, and more all served with flatbread to dip. This dish had a sweet quality, due to the summer carrots I suppose, and could have been a bit more balanced for me, but was a table favorite.
The kale salad, with grapes and lemon, was divine, and perhaps my favorite dish of the evening. The shredded kale paired very well with the lemon vinagrette, and the subtle herbs and grapes added just the right touch. The spinach and mushroom salad (not pictured) was a bit heartier, and not a table favorite, but still a nice addition to the meal.
We dabbled in more japanese fare, with the riceless "Does this look rice on me" roll, a combination of tuna and albacore sashimi, avocado, gogi berries, and more. This was my first "superfood" roll of this style, and while it boasted many things I loved, I would not order this again, due to a distinct tart flavor which did not match my pallet. Then again, maybe I was craving the missing rice.
Finally, our table tried the all-American favorite, mac and cheese, this time with havarti cheese, and a lovely parmasean cracker topper. This was super decadent, which can be said for many of the items we tried, and was a mac and cheesy dream.
The location and restaurant are clean and cozy, with a bar-style seating area, and an upstairs lounge. They also boast a late night menu for those looking for a different dream state.
Overall, Reverie may have to refine some of the menu items and get the drinks ready to serve, before moving from a vivid dream to a pleasant one, but it's a welcome addition to the food family in Chicago.