Even the atheists among us prayed to the gourmet gods when Avec closed this summer.
And apparently, they listened. The tiny West Loop institution re-entered the dining scene just two weeks ago with a few new tools and menu celebrating its history.
What hasn’t changed: Koren Grieveson helms the kitchen, bringing back cult favorites like whipped brandade, chorizo-stuffed dates, and herbaceous taleggio/truffle oil focaccia. Grieveson riffs on classic dishes from Avec’s adolescent years, too, giving us citrusy, mojo de ajo-smothered Gulf shrimp and pissaladiere (Southern France-inspired white flatbread with anchovies, olives, and caramelized onions).
What’s new: a wood-burning oven for perfectly roasted lobes of foie gras, olive oil-poached tuna (sweetly presented in a Mason jar), a host of exclusive cheeses, and more.
Pastry chef Patrick Fahy even delivers a vintage Blackbird dessert: chocolate crepes brimming with mascarpone, hazelnuts, and his famous homemade Nutella. You’ll worship it.
Avec, 615 West Randolph Street, between Jefferson and Desplaines Streets (312-377-2002 or avecrestaurant.com).
Photo: Doug Fogelson / Courtesy of Avec